Recent data from the IMI has reported that vehicle technician salaries are on the increase – rising by 5.5% in the last six months.
Too many skilled vehicle technicians have left the industry to follow the pull of high salaries and transferred their skills to other sectors such as offshore wind farms.
As a result, the skills shortage has been the perennial thorn in the side of the automotive aftermarket. Earlier this year, at our Talent Recharge event, we ran an interactive poll with over 200 attendees which revealed that 75% felt that recruitment had become even more difficult following the pandemic, and 45% admitted that the skills shortage had cost their businesses over £100k in the last 12 months.
Years of underinvestment in the recruitment of young talent has undoubtedly exacerbated these issues, but for too long, our industry has been blighted by an image problem.
We frequently highlight the fact that the next generation of vehicle technicians will need strong engineering and technological abilities to excel within the sector, and we know that we are now competing with the gaming and computing industries – both of which hold greater allure than the motor trade.
While we need to be better at selling ourselves and the current and future technical vehicle advancements to attract new talent, money talks. Not only will increased wages help attract a new generation of vehicle technicians but also recognise and retain the talent we already have.
Consequently, the news from the IMI that wages are on the up is encouraging and demonstrates that a shift is underway which will put our industry in a better position for the future.