Year in industry – James Tomlin

My year in industry at Cornwall Insight began in September 2022, where I was given the role of analyst within the Electric Vehicle Insight Service, part of the wider Consumer Market team.

As this was my first job I was quite unsure of what to expect during my time here, but thankfully everyone was really welcoming and happy to help get me up to speed so I quickly felt I fit right in. Whilst I had some knowledge of the energy sector before starting due to my Environmental Sciences studies and interest in the area, this placement has been a huge learning opportunity especially during this tumultuous time in the sector.

My responsibilities for the EV team include writing the weekly newsletter covering market developments relevant to EVs such as the growth of the public charging network, vehicle fleets switching to zero-emission vehicles, and policy and regulatory changes in the face of increased electric vehicle uptake. I also write and manage the monthly market metrics which is a database of statistics concerning a wide range of EV relevant material, such as the prices charged for charging, sales and registration figures of EVs, and the national distribution of charge infrastructure. When not working on these pieces I will often be researching a topic to expand our team’s knowledge of the sector, or finding ways to improve or increase our current coverage.

A highlight of my time here so far was the Electric Vehicle and Charging Infrastructure Forum we held in London. It was exciting to go to an industry event with nearly 100 attendees from across the energy market and a wide range of companies. The panel talks and audience questions were a really great way to learn the market perspective on the vehicle net zero transition, and it was also a great opportunity to talk and connect with industry figures following the presentations.

Having spent just under half of my year here, I would say I have already gained a wealth of experience that I can carry forward with me when I come back to employment after finishing my degree, whether at Cornwall Insight or elsewhere. This includes report writing, data analysis, and in more fluid tasks such as research. I’ve also developed the equally important but more abstract skills such as time management, working both independently on tasks as well as on tasks as part of a team, and organizational skills. I have also found that this time in work has been a nice break from my studying and has given me a useful perspective on what to expect post-graduation, making thinking about what I will do then a lot less stressful.

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