Can the Aftermarket Spur Job Creation? -

Can the Aftermarket Spur Job Creation?

Amid the issue of job security, the automotive industry has a variety of opportunities for those interested in a hands-on, service-oriented career.

(ARA) – With official unemployment reaching 7.6 percent in January and the Bureau of Labor Statistics reporting that the number of unemployed people increased by 4.1 million in the past 12 months, job security has become a priority for many families. Amid this uncertainty, the automotive industry has a variety of opportunities for those interested in a hands-on, service-oriented career.

"The automotive industry usually makes the news when it comes to manufacturing job loss. This gives the impression that good automotive jobs are few and far between. But that just isn’t the case," says Brad Smart, transmissions instructor at WyoTech in Long Beach, Calif. "While it’s true that careers in automotive manufacturing are becoming more limited, the future is bright for skilled service technicians."

The Department of Labor reports that service careers in the automotive industry are expected to grow at around 16 percent through 2016. The DOL estimates that approximately 110,000 new positions will be added between 2006 and 2016, with even larger demand resulting from the large number of service technicians who plan to retire.

The right training will be essential, however, and prospects are best for those who have completed a technical degree. "The automotive industry is becoming increasingly sophisticated and technological, so proper training is important. There will be high demand for those with the right training," says Smart.

Joe Bojorquez, automotive instructor at WyoTech in Long Beach, Calif., explains why automotive service jobs continue to be in demand. "Because consumers are keeping their cars longer, demand for vehicle service and repair are on the rise," says Bojorquez. A recent report from JD Power and Associates found that in 2008, consumers are keeping their vehicles for 71 months on average, up from 67 months in 2007, mostly for economic reasons.

"While manufacturing jobs are currently in transition — service jobs never are. That’s why a job in automotive service will be a secure career option over the next few decades," says Bojorquez. He also explains that the service department is the largest department of any car dealership and its staff must manage both the technical problems of the car, as well as administrative and customer relations duties. With baby boomers expected to retire in record numbers, demand for employees in the service sector is expected to remain high.

Moreover, Bojorquez explains that the industry offers jobs that appeal to a wide range of interests, and options for advancement abound for those with the right training. "Jobs in automotive service range from hands-on service technicians to management positions. There are also opportunities for individuals to specialize in a specific area such as lubrication, detailing or customer service."

One promising area of specialization for automotive service workers is in diesel engine repair and service. The Department of Labor reports that diesel engine technicians held approximately 275,000 jobs in 2006 and are expected to grow at a rate of approximately 11 percent through 2016. Usage of diesel engine vehicles is rising steadily, as more trucks and buses are used to ship freight across the country. And experts predict that the rising use of diesel engines in buses, trucks and increasingly, passenger vehicles, will fuel new jobs in the field.

Chad Enyeart, diesel/advanced diesel department coordinator at WyoTech’s Laramie, Wyo., campus explains that diesel engines have a lot of advantages over gasoline engines. "Diesel engines are more durable and economic than gasoline engines. And as diesel engines continue to improve their environmental standards, they will be used more frequently," says Enyeart.

Another area that offers a whole new line of work in automotive sales and service is the huge growth of alternative fuel vehicles. Faced with incredible pressure to reduce dependence on gas and reduce emissions, most car producers are now on a fast track to offer electric cars and hybrids. Large car manufacturers including Ford, Toyota and GM either already have electric cars in stock, or plan to add them in the next two years.

"Alternative fuel vehicles open up a whole new area of automotive jobs. For those graduates who have had the proper training in hybrid engine maintenance, electric cars can offer great career opportunities and long-term job security," says Enyeart.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

You May Also Like

NPW Welcomes Automotive Installers Warehouse to Its Network

Automotive Installers Warehouse has been an NPW customer since 2013 and has merged with NPW as part of its ongoing expansion.

National Auto Parts Warehouse Companies (NPW) has added Automotive Installers Warehouse (AIW) into its network. The company said AIW, a loyal NPW customer since 2013, has merged with NPW as part of its ongoing expansion endeavors.

Under the leadership of owner Omar Mesa, AIW has consistently provided service and expertise to its clientele. Mesa has transitioned to NPW with the merger, bringing his experience and industry knowledge to the team, NPW said.

Valvoline Ushers in New Era of Environmental Stewardship

Valvoline is providing solutions for ICE vehicles to be as clean and long-living as possible to benefit the environment of today and tomorrow.

Lumileds Debuts New Philips Automotive Lighting Website

The site features an entirely new design that brings together the full breadth of the Philips portfolio of automotive lighting and accessories in North America.

MANN+HUMMEL NA Aftermarket Shows Right to Repair Support

Representatives from MANN+HUMMEL’s North American aftermarket brands recently visited Capitol Hill to express their support for H.R. 906.

Auto-Wares Group Wins TCED Super Bowl Contest

As part of the grand prize, Auto-Wares winners will be accompanied by TCED President Elise Rozon.

Other Posts

Valvoline Global to Debut Ad During Super Bowl Pre-Game

The company will showcase its Restore & Protect motor oil in a 30-second ad before Super Bowl LVIII.

Chevron Introduces New Rykon Formula to Grease Product Line

The new calcium sulfonate complex-based grease is designed for heavy-duty and extreme pressure applications.

Valvoline Inc. Opens Its 1000th Franchise Location

The addition of the 1000th franchise location brings the total number of system-wide stores to nearly 1,900 retail locations.

Standard Motor Products Expands Emission Control Program

SMP’s program features more than 3,500 parts, including EVAP, EGR and positive crankcase ventilation products.