Auto Dealers derive plan to address shortage of technicians across the state
The first meeting of the Automotive Technicians Task Force took place at the North Carolina Automobile Dealers Association (NCADA) Thursday. NCADA is spearheading the project while working in conjunction with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, North Carolina community colleges, and several media outlets to address the industry-wide shortage of automobile technicians.
North Carolina franchised dealerships employ over 35,000 people across the state. As the current generation of technicians are getting older, the industry is seeing a wide-spread shortage of qualified workers and creating a tremendous burden for North Carolina businesses. The goal of the new Task Force is to help identify, train, hire, and retain talented technicians for automobile dealerships.
“North Carolina’s franchised new car, truck and RV dealerships continue to be a driving force in our state’s economy,” said Robert Glaser, President of the North Carolina Automobile Dealers Association. “Many North Carolina dealerships are locally-owned family businesses, committed to the well-being of the communities in which they serve. As our industry continues to grow, so does the demand for qualified workers. If we don’t address the problem head-on it’s only going to worsen.”
“We currently have openings in our dealership where a trained technician could earn in excess of $100,000. And, we have a hard time finding people who are interested,” noted Jay Wyatt, owner of Valley Auto in Fayetteville and current Chairman of NCADA.
The first order of business for the Task Force is to better educate the general public regarding the availability of these careers and the quality of life they can provide. Apprenticeship programs exist across the state for students interested in entering the workforce without the financial burden of student loans. These programs provide hands-on experience in local dealership shops that can lead to immediate job placement.
NCADA will be working with key stakeholders to increase the awareness of today’s students of the opportunities and salaries available at local car and truck dealers. Likewise, the association will reach out to the community colleges and local high schools to work with educators to chart a path for students interested in an automotive career.