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This article was written by EPG, a company that focuses on helping electric and autonomous vehicle clients hire the best people through our industry and product-specific staffing expertise. Contributors include Joe Rooney, CEO and co-founder, and Evie Sherrer, a talented recruiter. 

At EPG, we match our clients in the electric and autonomous vehicle industry with people that are looking for their dream careers. Our recruiters often get asked questions like “How can I get into the EV industry?” or “How can I stand out from my peers when pursuing a job in emobility?”. When it comes to electric vehicle recruitment and hiring the right engineers, there are several factors that companies and hiring managers look at. Using our EV staffing expertise, we put together a guide to assist people and students that are looking to join this ever-growing industry. 

A Guide to Becoming an Electric Vehicle Engineer – Part 1

Know the Basic Lingo

First, it’s important to know the basic terminology within the EV industry to help you learn more about the vehicles and how they work. This will give you a good launching point for choosing a major, picking college courses, speaking in interviews, and more. Here are a few to get you started

  • ICE (Internal Combustion Engine): A vehicle that is powered by a conventional internal combustion engine.
  • ZEV (Zero Emissions Vehicle): A vehicle that produces zero exhaust emissions under all possible operational modes & conditions.
  • BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle): A type of electric vehicle that is exclusively powered by rechargeable battery packs with no secondary source of propulsion
  • PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle): A type of EV that combines a conventional ICE with an electric propulsion system (hybrid vehicle drivetrain) and can be plugged in to recharge the battery.
  • HEV (Hybrid Electric Vehicle): Similar to a PHEV but it only charges through regenerative braking and/or a motor. 
  • SOC (State of Charge): The percentage of battery charge remaining.
  • SOH (State of Health): The percentage of health left in your battery related to battery degradation.
  • Regenerative Braking or “Regen”: A mechanism that allows an EV motor to act as a generator to recharge the battery while braking.
  • Level 1 Charging: Chargers that plug directly into a standard 120 volts of alternating current (VAC) outlet and supply an average power output of 1.3 kW to 2.4 kW. This power output is equivalent to 3-5 miles of EV range per hour
  • Level 2 Charging: Chargers that operate at 208 to 240VAC and output anywhere from 3 kW to 19 kW of AC power. Can typically charge an EV in 8 hours or less. 
  • Level 3 Charging: The fastest way to charge an EV, ranges from 200 to 600 volts of direct current (VDC) and beyond and can typically recharge an EV in around 30 minutes.
  • EVSE (Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment): The equipment involved in supplying energy to charge a vehicle, also called a charging station.
  • kWh (kilowatts per hour): The unit of energy typically used to measure how big an EV battery pack is.

Stay Up to Date

Our clients love to recruit and hire people that are passionate and knowledgeable about electric vehicles and the industry that surrounds them. Best practices to keep up to date include staying current with the news through articles and watching videos, attending car shows, test driving vehicles at your local dealership, and following newsletters. EPG puts out a weekly electric and autonomous vehicle newsletter, through our subsidiary Mobility EVo, that will keep you updated on the latest and most interesting topics in the mobility industry. You can sign up here.

Next week we’ll provide advice on choosing a college major, picking the right courses, and more. Tune in!

By following this guide, you should have a good idea of how to plan a course of action to become an engineer in the electric vehicle industry. You can check out EPG’s current job openings on our Careers Page. You can also contact us at Info@EPGAmerica.com or check out our website www.EPGAmerica.com for our services.

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