As part of our series introducing our contract vehicle technicians, today we are focusing on John, our contractor of over six years and one of our Autotech Recruit Ambassadors.
John, who lives in Newcastle-Under-Lyme, made the leap into contracting after selling his MOT centre business. After decades of working within the automotive industry, John has witnessed first-hand the significant evolution of the sector. Check out John's story on why he became an Autotech Recruit Ambassador, his thoughts on the challenges and rewards of being a contract vehicle technician and what the motor industry needs to do in order to attract a new generation of talent.
Interview with John, our contract vehicle technician and Ambassador.
Why did you decide to apply to become an Ambassador for Autotech Recruit?
John: I joined the Ambassador programme as I am well aware that fewer people today are staying in the motor industry. The fact that I am now in my 60s means that I will also be considering my own retirement in the near future and my thought was that by taking on this role, I would be able to talk to people about the automotive industry and point them in the direction of contracting. If I could inspire just one person to do this, then I will have succeeded!
What inspired you to become a contractor?
I have been in the motor trade all my working life and spent 25 years working in my own MOT centre. After selling my garage I found it difficult to settle in one place so when I heard about contracting through Autotech Recruit, I felt that it was the perfect solution for me.
How long have you been with Autotech Recruit?
I have now been with Autotech Recruit for almost six years and have worked continuously.
Has contracting afforded you a better work/life balance?
For me, contracting has become a full-time job. But that’s my decision, if I wanted to work part-time, I know that I could and as a contractor, I manage my own time. My weekends are my own though and while I enjoy working in the garden most weekends now, when I first started contracting, I would spend all my weekends taking my kids to climbing competitions around the country or walking in the Peak District.
Have you received much training since joining Autotech Recruit?
Through Autotech Recruit’s Manufacturer Led Recruitment Programme (MLP) I have received intensive training at Volvo’s training facility. This enabled me to learn new skills and be trained to a manufacturer standard, and I have spent almost 18 months working within Volvo dealerships. I have also achieved my IMI Level 3 electric/hybrid vehicle certification.
What are the key benefits of contracting for you?
The different faces I have met and the places I have been. Through contracting, I have made some good friends around the country. For me, I continue to work long hours but that’s my decision, I know if I wanted to cut back I could. The key benefit though is getting my weekends to myself, something I was unable to do when running my own MOT centre.
What do you think the industry needs to do to attract a new generation?
Pay them accordingly! Young people want decent money, and some will earn more by getting their forklift licence and working in a warehouse all day than by becoming vehicle technicians. Money will always win and employers need to increase what they are offering to attract and retain skilled vehicle technicians and MOT testers.
Learn more about the role of a contract vehicle technician
With the increasing demand for temporary vehicle technicians and MOT testers, it's never been a better time to give contracting a try. Would you like to follow in the footsteps of John and become a contract vehicle technician? Apply via our website or join our online open evening to learn more about this career path.