A new study released by the Automotive Industries Association of Canada highlights the shortfall in skilled trades that will challenge the industry moving forward in the face of growing industry potential.
The study, “Labour Market Watch: Gaps, Challenges & Opportunities in the Automotive Aftermarket Industry in Canada” looks at the potential for the aftermarket, driven largely by advancing automotive technology and a growing vehicle population, and overlays the challenges of growing a skilled labour force to capitalize on this potential.
“Continued technological advances in the automotive industry offer great potential for the aftermarket industry, “states the study. “In addition to increased demand for skilled labour in the current market scenario, the industry will need a more and more specialized workforce to deal with such disruptors as hybrid, fuel cell light vehicles, electronic systems, networks, and cellular and digital technologies. This will require re-training programs for existing technicians in order to stay current with technological advancements, and making inclusion and diversity training a tactical component of apprenticeship programs for new technicians.
“The pressure that increased demand exerts on supply often drives prices up. Aftermarket suppliers must maximize pricing potential in order to address recruitment, training, and compensation needs.
“The aftermarket industry has great potential in the coming years and offers many exciting opportunities and challenges. Meeting the anticipated labour demands will greatly increase the ability to benefit from the growing sales opportunities and maximize revenue potential.”
The study covers key findings nationally and regionally, engaging high-school students, diversity in the aftermarket, STEM skills for the industry, compensation, HR practices and training, as well as the image of the industry.
The study offers that potential to bridge the gap may exist in bringing underrepresented groups into the aftermarket in larger numbers.
“While skill, experience and age statistics indicate a potential supply issue going forward, the large gap in the number of women versus men in the industry, could offer part of the solution. Even in the areas of estimating and service advising, where the presence of women is highest, Canada’s 2017 aftermarket industry workforce was significantly and predominantly male.”
The free report is available for download HERE