It’s National Apprenticeship Week and there’s never been greater demand for apprenticeships in the motor trade.
The week-long event runs from 6 to 10 March and is aimed at encouraging more young people to choose apprenticeships as a fast-track to a great career.
To kick start the 10th installment of National Apprenticeship Week we wanted to share with you an interview that appeared in the December 16/January 17 issue of the IMI Magazine.
In the magazine, Gavin White, Managing Director of Autotech Recruit, talks about Autotech Apprentice and recruitment challenges in the automotive industry as well as offers advice to garages thinking about taking on an apprentice.
1. TELL US ABOUT AUTOTECH APPRENTICE?
As a dedicated automotive recruitment specialist, Autotech Recruit Ltd established Autotech Apprentice in 2015 as a specialist division to create high-quality apprenticeship solutions supporting colleges, employers, and students alike. With the industry currently facing a skills shortage, apprenticeships offer a route to harness fresh new talent to ensure that the industry has the practical skills and qualifications needed now, and in the future. A dedicated division within Autotech Recruit, the aim of Autotech Apprentice is to ensure the process of hiring an apprentice is smooth for all parties involved. Acting as a facilitator between all parties, the team takes the complexity and time out of hiring apprentices, while educating employers on government schemes and financial incentives which are readily available to train the next generation of vehicle technicians.
2. WHAT ARE THE MOST CHALLENGING RECRUITMENT ISSUES CURRENTLY FACING THE INDUSTRY (SKILLS SHORTAGE ETC.)?
The revival of the UK automotive industry since the recession has brought significant success to the sector and around 800,000 jobs across Britain were sustained. 2015 was the best year in a decade for car production with 1.59mn vehicles built with forecasters predicting an all-time record of 2mn by 2020. But this success could be undermined by the lack of skilled workers to fill new jobs. Despite efforts made by companies to increase training and apprenticeships, not enough is being done to ensure that there is a sufficient number of young people with appropriate training to feed the motor trade’s growth. Whilst the government is striving to boost the levels of participation in apprenticeship schemes among employers across the UK, it is evident that the motor trade could benefit from assistance and guidance from a specialist organisation that can monitor apprentice enrollment and development, acting as a link between the employer and training providers throughout the whole process.
3. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO GARAGES LOOKING TO TAKE ON AN APPRENTICE?
We receive a high volume of calls from college leavers seeking employment but, regardless of apposite qualifications, a lack of experience can deter garages who need people to hit the ground running. With automotive technology moving at such a high pace, the industry needs to recruit workers who possess the right blend of skills and education to complete technical jobs effectively. Garages need to turn to specialists who can educate and guide them through the process of recruiting apprentices to ensure they end up with people specifically trained to fit into their business and who they can trust to work to the highest standards.
4. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO COLLEGE STUDENTS LOOKING TO ENTER A COMPETITIVE INDUSTRY
Britain’s automotive industry is the most productive in Europe, and now is an exciting time for students to enter the sector and gain the relevant skills and experience which will help them to take the helm in the future. With a growing focus on the integration of consumer electronics – tablets, touchscreens, mobile technology – into vehicles there will be an increase in demand for specialised roles where both technical and mechanic expertise will run in parallel and it is this generation who will deliver this skillset. Providing both practical, hands-on skills and theoretical knowledge, college students can hone their skills and experience through an apprentice scheme. Our advice would be to knock on as many doors as possible to gain employment and seek the advice of colleges and recruitment agencies who specialise in the automotive industry. The automotive sector is booming and it’s an exciting industry for college leavers to get into. Now, with so many incentives open to apprentices and employers, it’s never been a better time to join the motor trade.
If you would like to find more about Autotech Apprentice and how we’ve been supporting future Motor Vehicle Technicians, Colleges/Training Providers and Employers with high-quality mechanic apprenticeship solutions, please call us on 01234 432978 or visit apprentice.autotechrecruit.co.uk.