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News & Events

Powering the Electrification: the Need for a Trained Workforce

Building a skilled workforce for the booming battery value chain

As more countries set ambitious targets for decarbonisation, electrification and introduce enabling frameworks for storage technologies, the demand for batteries will only continue to rise. This will create a surge in job opportunities. However, to fully realise the potential of this industry, a concerted effort is needed to develop the necessary skills and training for the workforce.

The global shift to electrification is accelerating. By 2030, the annual demand for lithium-ion batteries around the world is projected to reach 4,700 gigawatt hours (GWh) [1], which is 6 times our current global usage. This growing demand is driven by several lithium-ion battery applications, with most demand anticipated to come from electromobility and stationary storage applications. The number of electric vehicles (EVs) on the road is expected to grow tenfold, to 200 million [2] by 2030. Moreover, we can expect to have over 400 gigawatts (GW) of stationary storage [3], another tenfold growth compared to today. This growth will be conditional not just on the supply of materials; it will also rely on finding more skilled people to power it.

Unveiling critical job roles and skills

The battery value chain, illustrated in Image 1, requires a diverse range of job roles and skills to design, manufacture, maintain, troubleshoot, and repair batteries for their different applications. To keep pace with the rapidly expanding demand for lithium-ion batteries, additional jobs roles and skill will be necessary across all stages of the value chain, from raw materials and processing to battery recycling and second life. Similarly important are cross sectoral skills across educational profiles, such as a number of digital skills; among others data analysis, data science, artificial intelligence, and software engineering. Already, there is a shortage of skilled workers in the battery sector and a critical need for a trained workforce across the battery value chain. As new job roles and skills requirements emerge, and the demand for skilled workers grows, investment in specific training and upskilling programs is essential to ensure a flexible and skilled workforce that can adapt and grow with the industry.


Research we have conducted across the last 5 years[4], has identified more than 600 unique jobs roles and skills across the battery value chain. In this article we describe some of the critical job roles and skills needed for today and the near future at each stage of the battery value chain (see Image 2). It is important to acknowledge that this sector is still booming, and its needs evolve quickly, adapting to relevant changes and requirements. As such, employers and education providers must position themselves to keep up with the pace.

Fueling the global shift

To power this global shift toward electrification, batteries must be produced. At the first stage of the battery value chain, raw materials and processing, material and laboratory technicians, sourcing analysts, mining engineers, R&D engineers, and battery material engineers are needed to source and process materials that meet the industry’s requirements, as well as identify new emerging materials for future needs. These roles require knowledge and experience in working with electrode materials, chemical engineering and safety, battery material sourcing, along with skills in extraction and refinement, and characterisation techniques. At the second stage of the battery value chain, cell and battery pack manufacturing, process engineers, battery design engineers, manufacturing engineers, quality and test engineers, manufacturing operators, maintenance and production technicians are needed to design, assemble, test, and ensure the quality of batteries. The skills required for these types of roles include, battery and battery cell design, handling of batteries and electrical safety, electrochemistry, preventive and predictive maintenance, battery testing and quality control, among others. Today, nearly 1 million people[5] work in similar roles in support of EV battery manufacturing, with the majority in China. The global shift toward green energy will require battery manufacturing to expand to other regions.

European battery industry expansion and electromobility demand

In Europe, if battery cell and module production is successfully built out, the industry will be able to sustain between 150,000 and 300,000 jobs at minimum by 2030. Considering additional indirect jobs this increases significantly. Within the integration and application of battery storage, there is a focus on electromobility and stationary storage applications. When considering electromobility, automotive engineers, battery system engineers, algorithm and software engineers, functional safety engineers, system control engineers, production assembly operators, battery maintenance and test technicians, are needed to design, develop, and test batteries for electric vehicles and assemble electric vehicles. These roles require knowledge and experience working with batteries for electric vehicles and with battery management systems respecting safety standards. Additionally, they require skills in automotive engineering, EV battery design and EV diagnostics, maintenance, and servicing, and experience in handling and working with batteries.  While the International Energy Agency[6]  predicts about 7 million people can shift from internal combustion engine vehicle manufacturing to electric vehicle manufacturing, frictions are unavoidable. Apart from location and sheer manufacturing differences, EVs maintenance will see more mechanics needing practical knowledge on how to handle high-voltage batteries.

Opportunities in battery storage and recycling for a sustainable future

In stationary storage applications, application engineers, battery systems engineers, data and software engineers, quality and installation technicians are needed to design, test, install, and ensure the quality of battery storage systems behind-the-meter as well as in-front-of-the-meter. These roles require knowledge and experience with battery components, system design and integration, as well as diagnostics, performance prediction and electrical safety. Some 70,000 Americans[7] already work in the battery storage systems sector, and this number is likely to see a five to six-fold increase. If the growth of battery storage systems continues, there will be a need for well over 1 million new jobs by 2030 globally, many of them in Europe and America. All in all, an unprecedented need for hands and brains for batteries and its two main downstream value chains.

Finally, in battery recycling and second life, recycling specialists and engineers, environmental engineers, chemical engineers, machine operators, recycling, R&D, and inventory technicians are needed to implement efficient and environmentally friendly processes to recycle and reuse batteries. This requires knowledge on battery materials, chemical engineering, material science, and relevant regulations, along with skills in dismantling batteries, material recovery, and battery upcycling (e.g., repurposing EV batteries for stationary applications).

Nurturing a skilled and innovative workforce for the thriving battery industry

Reflected in the job roles and required skills described here, are the need for both skilled workers as well as innovative and forward-thinking individuals in the battery industry. To grow a workforce that meets this need at the rapid pace the industry demands, it is important to provide multiple opportunities for training and upskilling. The current shortage of skilled workers in the battery sector is a major challenge that threatens the growth and sustainability of the industry. The urgency of growing and upskilling this workforce cannot be overstated, and steps must be taken now to address this problem. Employers need to invest in training and upskilling their existing workforce, while learners must be encouraged to pursue careers in the battery sector. InnoEnergy Skills Institute already has a portfolio of ~400 learning hours, actively training the workforce today in collaboration with other projects and initiatives aiming at supporting these efforts.


[1] Battery 2030, McKinsey & Company, 2022 (

[2] Global EV Outlook, IEA, 2022 (

[3] BloombergNEF, 2022 (

[4] EIT InnoEnergy and InnoEnergy Skills Institute (formerly EBA Academy), 2019-2023

[5] World Energy Employment, IEA, 2022 (

[6] Energy Technology Perspectives 2023, IEA 2023 (

[7] Nearly 70,000 US battery storage jobs in 2021 (

[8] EIT InnoEnergy and InnoEnergy Skills Institute (formerly EBA Academy)  research and interviews with battery stakeholders (2018-2023), ALBATTS reports (2019-2023), Future Expert Needs in the Battery Sector (2021), Batteries Europe Task Force on Education and Skills Position Paper (2021)


Author: Dimitra Maleka, InnoEnergy Skills Institute and Ashley Gyllen, InnoEnergy Skills Institute (review and revision) with support from Kris Ignaciuk, IGN Research (information)