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You spend a lot of time and money finding an hiring an employee. Whether it be a technician, service advisor or office worker. However, the real work to ensure that the new employee is up and running begins when you hire that person. Don't make the mistake of thinking that a new-hire can be put to work without an orientation period. No matter how experienced someone may be, take the time to slowly acclimate that person to your shop, your other employees and your systems and procedures. The time you take in the beginning will help to create a long-lasting employee relationship.
One thing I see different with young techs today from years back is the lack of hands-on experience. In my era, mechanics got their start pumping gas, working with their father on the family car and helping friends. By the time you landed a job in a garage, you had the basics under your belt. I am firm believer in hiring entry level techs, always have been. I contact the trade schools; Lincoln Technical, Universal Technical Institute, etc. I have to tell you, the last few years have been a bit discouraging. When I look at their resumes I am shocked that they never worked in a repair shop. Oh, they have worked as a camp counselor, at the local deli, at Rite Aid and Apple Bees. But no hands on mechanical work? Some of them never worked on car other than what was required at school. These schools are pumping out techs by the thousands. Are they all like this, and where are they too? Our future is dependent on a strong entry level workforce. I think we need to rethink the process. I also think that trade schools should adopt a concept similar to the medical field. Nurses and doctors must go thru mandatory work at hospitals while still in school and then go thru internship programs. You would never put a doctor in an operating room, fresh out of Med School with no hands-on experience. Would you?