Advanced Manufacturing in Europe: Top Recruiters, Occupations and Skills

Published on Sep 15, 2023

Written by Mariana Marques

Advanced Manufacturing

Harder, better, faster, stronger. Yes, this is the title of a Daft Punk song, but it could very well be the motto of the Advanced Manufacturing industry. If traditional manufacturing served us well over the last years, the need to make processes more efficient and speed up time to market brought us to leverage the latest technologies such as AI, Robotics, and IoT to transform this sector. 

64% of the EU’s private sector research development expenditure goes to manufacturing, so it is no wonder this sector continues to evolve at lightning speed. And its potential goes beyond serving an Economy of Scale: it also supports green economy plans by making processes and machines more sustainable, reducing waste and pollution. 

In this article, we use our brand new European Skills Transformation Index to explore the latest trends of Advanced Manufacturing in Europe, including the top companies recruiting for this sector, and the most in-demand roles and skills. If you want to explore the data yourself, or check out the other insights and industry data we compiled, click below to see the full index.

Top recruiters for Advanced Manufacturing in Europe

Of the 10 companies we studied, the highest recruitment activity in 2022 was from Siemens, accounting for 23.8% of job postings across these companies.The German multinational, known by many for its technology hardware, offers an endless list of products and services in Industrial Automation too, including automation systems, power supplies and industry software. 

Bosch, also headquartered in Germany, had a share of 20.1% of job postings across the top 10 Advanced Manufacturing employers. Third place was taken by the French company Thales Group (14.7%), which manufactures electrical systems and devices for aerospace, space, transportation and security. 

Out of all the top 10 Advanced Manufacturing recruiters, 5 of them are German, and they are mostly in the automotive sector (Continental, Mercedes, and Volkswagen). The remaining leading recruiters are French (Airbus, Alstom, and Thales), and British (BAE Systems, and Jaguar Land Rover). These three countries are leading the way in leveraging cutting-edge technologies to improve traditional manufacturing.

Top Advanced Manufacturing occupations

Now that we know the top hiring companies for Advanced Manufacturing - what roles have they been hiring for? Engineering Professionals, Software Developers, and System Analysts make it to the top 10 list of occupations all 10 companies hired for throughout 2022. With engineering and technology being the basis of Advanced Manufacturing, this data reflects the needs and goals of the industry.

Advertising and Marketing was also among the most popular occupations, making it to the top 10 occupations list of nine  companies (Thales is the exception), whilst Buyers makes it into the top 10 for eight companies (BAE Systems and Siemens being the odd ones out).  

Looking at those occupations that appear in the top 10s for most companies tells a lot about the similarities in their hiring priorities. Equally interesting are the differences in demand. Jaguar Land Rover, for instance, is the only company with Product Graders and Testers in its top 10 most sought-after occupations. Other “unique” occupations appearing in the top 10 for just one company include Electronics Engineering (Bosch); Human Resource Managers (Continental); and Applications Programmers (Thales).

Every company clearly has its own unique recruitment footprint and talent strategy, but as the world of work becomes increasingly driven by skills not job titles, one of the key differentials in the competition for scarce talent will be which organisations adopt the new skills-driven approach to workforce planning and which ones are content to continue with the more old-school approach.

Top skills Advanced Manufacturers request when hiring Software Developers

If you’ve been reading our previous blogs on digital skills - you'll know that not all digital skills are the same. And analysing the most in-demand skills Advanced Manufacturing companies are looking for also tells us that. 

Looking at Software Developers (one of the occupations that appeared in the top 10s for all 10 companies), we found some very striking differences in demand for various skills. Both Alstom and Jaguar Land Rover had an especially high emphasis on Agile Methodology in 2022. The average frequency of Agile Methodology mentions across all 10 companies’ job postings was 24.6%, whereas it was 60.9% for Alstom and 60% for Jaguar Land Rover.

On the other hand, Volkswagen, Continental, and Bosch were putting most of their eggs in the Computer Science basket when hiring Software Developers. Volkswagen mentioned Computer Science in over half of its job postings (50.9%), while Continental and Bosch required Computer Science skills in 47.9% and 46.5% of its job postings, respectively. The average frequency of Computer Science mentions in these 10 companies’ job postings for Software Developers was just 25.9%.

While some skills are visibly popular across companies, if we look at specific technologies and programming languages, we can see a lot more differences. For example, C# (Programming Language) was present in 6.4% of all 10 companies’ Software Developer job postings - but in 0% of postings from Jaguar Land Rover. Embedded software was also present in 0% of job postings from Volkswagen, Thales, and Siemens, yet Continental required this skill in 17% of its postings.

Get more European data 

As the data tells us, Advanced Manufacturing is a world of its own, and even within the top 10 recruiters for this sector, occupations and skills requirements vary widely. If you’ve enjoyed this industry deep-dive, we have good news: Lightcast European data can help you analyse any industry, occupation, or even skills trend in Europe. Plus, you can go as granular as you need with our Lightcast Taxonomies and regional data. 

As an educational institution, our labour market data can help you understand the most in-demand skills across industries, and adapt and market your portfolio so that your students are fully equipped to meet employer demand. 

Similarly, as a talent leader, our data can help you do benchmarking against competitors, understand what skills your company should be hiring for, or even where to find the best talent. Lastly, governmental agencies can share these insights to consult the private or public sector and support the economical development of their region. 

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about how our data can help you unlock opportunities and solve labour market challenges, get in touch with our team below.

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