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Andre R

Shop/Technician licensing

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I just finished reading the post from Gonzo about diagnostics and I was about to respond and then chose to go this route. Let me give you a little background on me ; 57 years old, repairing cars for 42 of them, ase master certified with L1. I've repaired cars in Alaska, Massachusetts , Connecticut, Rhode Island and now in Arizona. I've been self employed for 29 years.

 

The problem of no techs and more importantly unqualified techs were present in the 70s when I started. ASE came along and they were going to fix the problem. All techs were going to have to get certified to be able to work in the automotive field, i'm still waiting for that to happen. Then ASE said that if we certified on our own that we would be more attractive to prospective employers and could command higher wages, still waiting for that to happen.

 

A couple of months ago Mitch Schnieder wrote an article about the tech shortage and that something needs to be done. Donny Sieffert from ASA has been writing articles about the connected car and all the complexities and how we are going to need very talented diagnosticians to figure them out and repair them. These same articles were written in the 80s about the new computer controlled cars and the 90s about the new fuel injected cars and the, well you get the idea.

 

We as an industry need to come together and fix this problem. Instead we complain to each other about how hard it is to find qualified techs while we hire unqualified /barely qualified techs to work in our bays.I include myself in this ,I'm just as guilty.

 

The reason we do this is we have no way of knowing if that person applying for the tech position has any schooling or even knows what he says he knows.

 

I feel shop and tech licensing fixes a lot of these problems. I'm sure there will be a bunch of you that will disagree with me and thats fine. I know you only hire certified people and run the best shops except the three shops down the road or around the corner don't and it says auto repair on the front of their buildings too.

 

If you knew that the person coming through your door had to pass a rigorous licensing requirement and that every shop had to have the same basic equipment and could only hire these licensed techs it levels the playing field for all of us.

 

Think it can't be done? Look at the Right To Repair laws and agreements that have been forged and passed in different states. It can be done but only if we start the discussion on a national level.

 

Using an organization like ASA and bringing together some of the leaders in our industry to work on this with our input I feel would be a start in the right direction.

 

I know it won't be a cure all but it would be a start. We need to start some where .

 

Thoughts, insights??

 

 

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