Here’s How VW Plans to Train Employees for EVs

produktion des vw id 3 am 08062021 in glaeserne manufaktur von vokswagen in dresden foto oliver killig
Here’s How VW Plans to Train Employees for EVsOliver Killig
  • VW is in the process of converting several plants to produce EVs, with the main Wolfsburg factory in Germany set to begin building the VW ID.3 hatch in the fall.

  • As part of employee training, the automaker has created a series of rooms with puzzles dubbed the eMotionRoom.

  • VW plans to train 22,000 of its employees at Wolfsburg between now and 2025, as part of its turn to electric-vehicle production.

Volkswagen has committed to transforming itself into an EV maker over the next several years, with the historic Wolfsburg plant set to start producing electric models later this year, joining Zwickau and Emden.

But simply converting the plant hardware to produce electric models doesn't address the entirety of the process—Wolfsburg plant workers have to be on board with electrification as well. And this requires a unique approach.

Volkswagen has created what it calls an eMotionRoom for its production employees, as part of their training, designed by the Volkswagen Group Academy. It consists of three carefully created rooms with puzzles that employees must solve within 20 minutes in teams of four people to advance to the next room. And each team of employees is guided by two instructors via a video link.

The first room focuses on the early age of electrification, with a 19th century theme. The second room focuses on the history of the Wolfsburg plant itself, tracing its origins from the distant past to the present day. The third room, meanwhile, is focused on the digital future of automobiles.

emotionroom wolfsburg vlnr ralph linde, leiter group academy, christian vollmer, produktionsvorstand und gunnar kilian, konzernpersonalvorstand
The eMotionRoom challenges employees to solve puzzles related to EV technology.VW

"The eMotionRoom principle already met with very positive feedback from our employees in Zwickau," said Gerardo Scarpino, Deputy Chairman of the General Works Council. "The idea proved extremely popular—that is why we have included it for Wolfsburg, too. The transition to e-mobility can only happen together with our colleagues."

The eMotionRoom puzzles are part of a one-day training program that also includes other training activities for employees, including the use of VR headsets as part of production.

In all, VW plans to train 22,000 employees at Wolfsburg between now and 2025, but the plant's immediate aim is to begin ID.3 hatch subassembly at its home plant by this fall, ahead of the full start of production by the middle of 2024.

"The assembly line will be the first at one of the Volkswagen brand’s passenger car plants in Germany that is able to build both MEB and ICE vehicles on the same line," Plant Manager Rainer Fessel said. "With the future SSP platform, this will make Wolfsburg Volkswagen’s first multi-platform factory a few years from now."

Should VW offer smaller EVs like the ID.3 stateside, or have consumer tastes shifted too far in the direction of larger crossovers? Let us know in the comments below.