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Hyundai plans to hire 1,800 staffers, mainly polytechnic and ITI diploma holders, at its plant near Chennai as it ramps up output.
Hyundai plans to hire 1,800 staffers, mainly polytechnic and ITI diploma holders, at its plant near Chennai as it ramps up output.

Automakers hire semi-skilled workers to fill manpower gap

The new recruits are expected to fill in the vacuum of support staff for permanent skilled workers on production line

MUMBAI : Automakers such as Maruti Suzuki India Ltd and Hyundai Motor India Ltd and their key vendors are hiring skilled and semi-skilled diploma holders trained under government schemes to fill in vacancies.

Hiring people trained under the National Employment Enhancement Mission or NEEM scheme and at Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) is aimed at ensuring the carmakers have enough manpower as they ramp up operations, three senior industry executives said.

People aware of the matter said while Suzuki Motor Gujarat Pvt. Ltd, a unit of Suzuki Motor Corp., is adding fresh recruits at its Hansalpur plant, Maruti Suzuki has also asked its vendors to recruit staff in the coming months.

The company declined to comment on the matter.

Hyundai Motor, India’s largest exporter of cars and second-largest domestic player, plans to hire 1,800 staffers, mainly polytechnic and ITI diploma holders, at its plant in Tamil Nadu as it resumes the third shift as part of ramping up production.

Stephen Sudhakar J., senior vice-president of people strategy and business support, Hyundai Motor India said, “To fulfil growing demand, we recently resumed our third shift and we need a skilled and highly driven team backing our operations from our facility in Sriperumbudur (near Chennai). In view of the same, we are currently in the process of recruiting manpower and will bring on board around 1,800 of them in the apprentice and trainee cadres."

“This hiring will also fill up the gap created by those who were unable to return to or rejoin work due to the lockdown and travel ban situations prevailing in the state," he added.

According to Gaurav Vangaal, associate director of light vehicle production forecast, IHS Markit, manpower shortage is one of the biggest problems facing automakers in ramping up production.

“There is high demand for technical staffers, diploma holders and ITI candidates across the industry. The new recruits are being hired to fill in the vacuum of support staff for the permanent skilled workers on the production line. They get on-the-job-training immediately after their induction and this process ensures continuous flow of work on the shop floor without disrupting output," he said.

Even large tier-1 suppliers are adding new recruits.

Vivek Vikram Singh, managing director and group CEO, Sona Comstar, said the company recently hired 140 diploma trainees and 20 ITI freshers at its Gurugram and Manesar facilities for new vacancies as well as to replace workers who have returned to their hometowns.

“We are paying the freshers regular salaries. However, to incentivize our skilled and experienced workforce that has been with us for longer, we are paying extra retention bonuses for regular attendance," Singh said.

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