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Toyota plans to double hiring of software professionals

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Toyota’s head office in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture

Toyota Motor Corp. will drastically change its recruitment policy, increasing the ratio of new engineering recruits with software development skills in the spring of 2022 by about double compared to the spring of 2021.

Also, the company will gradually increase the percentage of mid-career hires to about 50% of the total number of employees joining the company annually from the current level of about 30%.

Toyota has traditionally hired a large number of mechanical engineering students.

In spring 2021, the company hired about 300 undergraduate and graduate students for engineering positions, but most of them were in the field of mechanical engineering; only about 20% were in the software field. In spring 2022, the company will increase the uptake of software students to 40-50%.

In the automotive industry, the competition to develop autonomous driving technology is intensifying. More and more cars are connected to the internet all the time. As a result, there is an urgent need to secure human resources with knowledge of software and artificial intelligence to control driving.

When hiring, Toyota will have a system in place to categorize the kind of positions available and then hire students who want to go into particular fields.

The aim is to prevent students from leaving the company early by giving them an idea of what they will be doing after they enter the company. It is a similar concept to a job-based personnel system that clarifies the duties and required abilities, but it is expected that students will experience multiple jobs after joining the company.

As for increasing the number of mid-career hires, the company is hoping that hiring experienced professionals will have a stimulating effect on the organization.

The Yomiuri Shimbun

Focus on next-generation vehicles

By Hirotaka Sano / Yomiuri Shimbun Staff Writer

The automotive industry is facing increasingly fierce competition in the development of next-generation vehicle technologies, known as CASE (Connected, Autonomous, Shared, Electric) such as autonomous driving and electrification. With tech giants such as Google LLC entering the industry, Toyota has decided that it will be difficult to keep up with the changes if it continues its past hiring practices.

Toyota is shifting toward becoming a “mobility company” that not only produces cars but also supports a wide range of people’s mobility.

The company is expanding its business domain, including the construction of Woven City, a demonstration city for advanced technologies in Shizuoka Prefecture. Rather than focusing on just cars, the company is prioritizing the development of software to improve performance and value.

There is cross-industry competition for human resources with advanced knowledge and expertise. Major electronics companies, for example, are hurrying to secure talented personnel by raising wage levels even for new employees.

The fact that Toyota, one of Japan’s leading companies, is stepping up its efforts to acquire software personnel is likely to have a major impact on the hiring market.