It appears that Apple and Ford are engaging in some type of poaching war for employees. The latest example came this week, when it was reported that Apple has poached a 31 year veteran of the auto industry, formerly with Ford, to help ramp up development of its forthcoming electric vehicle.
The tech giant has hired Desi Ujkashevic, who has worked at Ford since 1991 and has most recently been the company's global director of automotive safety engineering, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday.
She helped "oversee engineering of interiors, exteriors, chassis and electrical components for many Ford models," the report says.
From Ford's website:
In her previous role, she was the Engineering Director for North American Vehicle Programs where she was responsible for Engineering for Car and Utility Programs managing engineering design deliverables including achievement of cost, profit, quality, and timing objectives. Prior to this, Desi was the Global Director, Interiors Engineering where she led the Strategy, Program execution, Quality and launch for Interiors on all Global Programs. Previous to this, Desi completed a 3-year international assignment in Germany, serving as Ford's Director of Engineering for Body Systems and Design Operations.
In addition to working on EVs, she helped develope the Ford Escape, Explorer, Fiesta and Focus, according to Mac Rumors. The outlet also noted that Bloomberg has reported "that Apple wants the Apple Car to be safer than cars from Tesla and Waymo, with backup systems to avoid driving system failures."
Recall, back in September 2021, Ford poached iconic auto engineer Doug Field from Apple.
Field, who previously worked as a vice president of Mac hardware engineering at Apple, returned to the Cupertino tech giant after a nearly five-year stint at Tesla to work on Apple's secretive automotive initiative.
Three years later, Field jumped ship again and the former Tesla and Apple exec was poached by Ford as its chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer. The latest transition marked a full circle for Field, who started his career as an engineer at Ford.
Field, who led development of Tesla’s Model 3, most recently served as vice president of special projects at Apple, which also included the tech giant’s Titan car project.
Ford said Field will lead its vehicle controls, enterprise connectivity, features, integration and validation, architecture and platform, driver assistance technology and digital engineering tools.