We can proclaim 2016 a ‘watershed’ for Autotech Recruit – the biggest year for both temporary and contract recruitment.
Describing the reasons for 2016 being a turning point for the company, our MD Gavin White, hails the UK’s motor trade’s record-breaking period on the surge in demand for skilled candidates. “The growing demand, combined with the shortage of those highly qualified, experienced industry professionals, has created a challenging recruitment market for employers” Gavin comments.
Significantly, Autotech Recruit has seen our client pool become increasingly diverse throughout 2016 as a lot of small, independent garages realise the benefit of using technical recruitment specialists in a market where in-demand talent is difficult to attract. “There’s also a greater sense of determination from job seekers entering this strengthening market,” explains Gavin, “they are realising the progression opportunity this booming industry can bring and, in the case of permanent recruitment, we see that today’s skilled technicians are very much aware of their value and continue to actively seek new job opportunities.”
While the skills shortage has been a very real problem for the industry, automotive companies are, consequently, prepared to do more to retain their talent, often presenting counter offers to a skilled employee who is looking to move on. In terms of temporary recruitment, the average longevity of placements has increased from 1-2 weeks to 4-6 weeks as the garages want to hold on to high-quality contractors.
Generally, depending on the sector, there seems to be a greater shortage of relevant skills within the M4 corridor and the Midlands, and it is jobs within these areas which are harder to fill. “As a result of these regional skill shortages, our contractors’ rates of pay have risen as more of them need to travel further to fill short-term placements to cover leave and peaks in demand” comments Gavin.
With regard to job titles, there appears to be a blanket effect to growth with requests for positions rising across all areas. However, in the future we envisage a rise in demand for bodyshop positions: “The automotive industry has seen a shift in the last few years with a number of automotive companies re-shoring back to the UK. As the industry continues to thrive, employment will continue to rise along with the forecasted vehicle output. I predict that demand for bodyshop will be particularly prevalent as the UK becomes a centre of excellence in the manufacturing of vehicles.”
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