Jul 1, 2020

Mercedes And Nvidia - Closing The Tech Gap On Tesla

Technology
Manufacturing
Kayleigh Shooter
3 min
cars on manufacturing line
Mercedes-Benz and Nvidia are partnering to close the competitive gap on Tesla. What does this mean for the industry...

Who is Mercedes?:

Mercedes is a German automotive marque and a subsidiary of Daimler AG.[1] Mercedes-Benz is known for producing luxury vehicles and commercial vehicles. In 2018, Mercedes-Benz was the largest seller of premium vehicles in the world, having sold 2.31 million passenger cars. Mercedes-Benz traces its origins to Karl Benz's creation of the first internal combustion engine in a car, the Benz Patent Motorwagen, financed by Bertha Benz dowery and patented in January 1886, and Gottlieb Daimler and engineer Wilhelm Maybach's conversion of a stagecoach by the addition of a petrol engine later that year. The Mercedes automobile was first marketed in 1901 by Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (Daimler Motors Corporation).

Who is Nvidia:

Nvidia is an American multinational technology company incorporated in Delaware and based in Santa Clara, California.[3] It designs graphics processing units (GPUs) for the gaming and professional markets, as well as system on a chip units (SoCs) for the mobile computing and automotive market. Its primary GPU product line, labeled "GeForce", is in direct competition with Advanced Micro Devices' (AMD) "Radeon" products. Nvidia expanded its presence in the gaming industry with its handheld Shield Portable, Shield Tablet, and Shield Android TV.

Since 2014,[citation needed] Nvidia has diversified its business focusing on four markets: gaming, professional visualization, data centers, and auto. Nvidia is also now focused on artificial intelligence. Nvidia provides parallel processing capabilities to researchers and scientists that allow them to efficiently run high-performance applications. They are deployed in supercomputing sites around the world. 

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About the partnership:

Industry-leading company Tesla faces a new challenge from an alliance of Mercedes (Daimler) and Nvidia. On Tuesday, Daimler and Nvidia penned a deal to develop and equip the German company's Mercedes-Benz cars with a next-generation chip and software platform that could eventually be used to help vehicles drive by themselves.

The partnership is in response to Tesla's ability to integrate custom-designed chips with thousands of lines of code, which has allowed the company to develop new features faster than its competitors, giving them a competitive edge. While Daimler and rivals such as Volkswagen and BMW have criticised Tesla's aggressive marketing of its "autopilot" features, they have struggled to match the speed with which the U.S. carmaker brings innovations to market.

In a bid to narrow the technology gap, Mercedes, one of the world's largest luxury carmakers, has taken the unprecedented step of sharing its intellectual property with an outside tech company in exchange for access to Nvidia's computer processors and its software engineers specialised in artificial intelligence.

This joint venture is a big change from established automakers' traditional approach of trying to go it alone, or partnering with existing suppliers and manufacturers, and marks an attempt to keep up with Tesla, and deep-pocketed tech firms like Amazon and Apple. Mercedes, Volkswagen and Audi have so far used a patchwork approach, combining vehicle platforms originally designed for combustion engine drives with electric vehicle software and components largely developed by third party suppliers.

"You no longer install one small box for every single function; instead you install a bigger smart box that can do many things simultaneously,” a spokesman said. "The computing power you need for climate control is ridiculously low compared to functions that prevent the car from crashing. A smart box prioritises the safety functions and uses its 'downtime' to focus on things like climate regulation."

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May 7, 2021

Improving Skill Initiatives in Technology Businesses in 2021

skills
Technology
Business
upskilling
Becs Roycroft, Senior Director...
4 min
Becs Roycroft, Senior Director of Global Emerging Talent & Reskill Operations at mthree talks us through the skills needed in today's job market.
Becs Roycroft, Senior Director of Global Emerging Talent & Reskill Operations at mthree talks us through the skills needed in today's job market...

According to Tech Nation’s most recent report, UK technology companies now employ more than 2.93 million people, with the sector seeing a 40% growth in the last two years. The new world of work and the uptick in digitalisation caused by the pandemic with the mass uptake of digital services and online communications has meant that the technology sector has seen a huge demand for specific skills across the job market.

Whilst many businesses have done well to adapt to the digital transformation witnessed over the last few years, this rapid advancement of technology has also resulted in widespread difficulties recruiting experienced tech employees. McKinsey reported that over 87% of organisations have reported huge digital skills gaps, which suggest that whilst most tech businesses are aware of and actively trying to tackle these issues, many are struggling to do so effectively.

To remain competitive and overcome this shortage of skilled workers, technology businesses must look at how they can upskill current employees, move employees to new areas of the business, and ensure their technology talent is as up to date as possible. 

So how can tech businesses stay ahead of the skills curve this year? 

Make an inventory of desired skills – and offer training for them

To introduce effective skilling programmes within technology businesses, management teams should identify and agree on skills that the business is in greatest need of – both in the immediate and longer terms. 

Over the past three years, demand for tech skills such as AI, cyber and cloud automation has accelerated, with AI and cyber in particular growing by 44% and 22% year on year, respectively, from 2019. For many tech businesses, these skills will continue to be desirable for the business to progress, and senior leadership teams must agree on what skills the business wants to prioritise in its workforce.

Next, management teams should then look to create an inventory of these desired skills and also identify what job roles need to be introduced to further this expertise within the business. This can be done through hiring external candidates or even introducing a programme that current employees can take to develop these particular skills.

This technique requires technology businesses to be malleable in their approach, and they can therefore look to introduce training that builds on these skills gaps or even move employees around the business to utilise their existing skills in areas that are most needed.

Incentivise the workforce

Finally, a good way to develop the skills available amongst the workforce in a technology business is to ensure employees are excited about the prospect. If new candidates and existing members of the team feel included in the approach, can see a benefit in taking additional training and feel motivated to further their own career progression, this could be the tech companies’ strongest asset.

For example, companies such as Amazon have set the bar for investing in reskilling and upskilling to keep their entire workforce motivated and, most importantly, up-to-speed. As many people join Amazon, some without any previous educational qualifications to some possessing PHDs, the business’s skilling programme is provided to give all employees the skills they need to either move up at Amazon or move on to a qualified position outside of the company. By offering this training, employees are motivated to think of their own career and future, and Amazon has the benefit of seeing the operational and financial benefits of a skilled, engaged workforce.

According to recent research completed by Robert Half, software development, cloud migration and project management experience are top of the list for hiring managers in 2021, with tech-specific skills being some of the most in-demand across all sectors. The pandemic has undoubtedly accelerated this increased demand for technology skills and talent, and industry leaders are at a pivotal stage to ensure their workers’ skills sets are up-to-date and being utilised effectively within the business.

For tech businesses that wish to attract this new talent as well as keeping current employees engaged and competitive within the industry, bosses must not only incentivise their workers with skilling programmes, but they must work to identify what skills they are in most need of and then put the necessary training programmes in place.

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