Digital Transformation Consultant - Automotive

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As part of their new global strategy, our client is moving to position themselves as industry experts in the delivery of Industry 4.0 solutions.

They had identified 7 key verticals in which they believed, based on successful history, they could make a significant impact. One of which was the automotive industry – a particularly challenging industry due to the fact that it has for many years taken the lead in automated manufacturing processes.



Our client believed that to gain the credibility needed to be successful in this strategy, they would need to attract someone from within the industry. The ideal candidate was someone who had previously led digital transformation projects, at scale within an OEM or Tier 1 supplier to the automotive market.

Someone with this experience would be able to speak confidently on the subject. They would know their way around the manufacturing set up, understand the challenges faced and ideal outcomes for Industry 4.0 implementations. This knowledge would go beyond the plant, to the supply chain and partner ecosystem.

The key objective of the role was for this person to become the trusted advisor to the end client. The goal being to bring them back to our clients IT/OT solution, and into their Innovation Centers. Scaling solutions, building strong relationships in new and existing accounts and laying the foundations for long term accounts.



After an in depth briefing with the Global Innovation Team Leader, we were ready to start mapping the market. With a clear idea on the objective of the role, the culture of the business and the team and the long-term strategy, which are all critical information when attracting candidates, began our search.

With our wealth of expertise in finding technical talent within the industrial automation field, we were in a strong position. The market mapping was aimed around some of the major OEM, Tier 1 and Automotive industry suppliers. In total 150 candidates were identified.

A crucial stage in this assignment would be the competency-based interview, which we undertake before the candidate is submitted for formal interview with the client. Many of the candidates identified were clearly capable from a technical point of view of delivering what our client needed. However, because of the environments that these candidates were coming from, they were not to have had consultancy experience.

But this was no problem because, having had such a detailed brief from the client and strong understanding of what was needed, we were able to use this information to tailor the right approach when interviewing the candidates. We were bringing an opportunity to the candidates which was not something they had necessarily considered before, quite a different direction to take their skills and experience. Because of this the client story was more important than ever, our role is to bring this story to life, lead the brand engagement on behalf of our client.



From the target clients and the pool of associated candidates, we screened 5 exceptional candidates and interviewed 3 which were subsequently submitted to the client. Following the client interviews a successful appointment was made. The successful candidate came from a target client, a global supplier to the automotive industry.  They received excellent feedback from all parties, meeting 4 people in a 4-stage process.

Being close to the candidate throughout the negotiation process ensured that this stage ran smoothly. As with all of our clients, we advised and supported throughout these negotiations, and we were delighted to reach a successful conclusion. Feedback from the client to Collingwood was excellent and we have since been invited to work on numerous other technical assignments.


About the author
Doug Mackay
min read

Having started his career in Executive Search in 1998, Doug set up Collingwood in 2005 alongside his wife, Claire Mackay.

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