Automotive Schools - Ask Industry Employers!

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Automotive Schools - Ask Industry Employers!

By: Eric Benjamin - written: February 25, 2014

You've decided that a career in the automotive industry is an option for you and you're ready to take the next step, so ask the experts. Start with talking with automotive industry employers and you might just land your dream job and/or score a fully paid education or partial scholarship with one of the top automotive schools. Stranger things have happened.

If you're considering working in a specific area, like your local home town or even if you're thinking of relocating for your automotive career, consider contacting a couple of area employers (car dealers and independent auto shops) to ask them what they look for in a technician and their opinions on auto career training courses and schools.

In addition, by contacting area auto employers you can get insights into job opportunities with the perspective employer and create the all important introduction before completing your automotive training. This is one of the best things you can do. There is also a little unknown fact that some very select few employers who have a hard time finding skilled and trained technicians will actually off set the cost of your training and pay a portion if not all of your education costs, if you're willing to sign an agreement that you will return and work for a set period of time for the employer.

Here's a couple of general questions to start the conversation should you consider contacting a local area auto employer. First ask to talk with an individual that can give you some insights like the service manager, hiring manager, or a technician. These individuals should be able to give you the most insight into planning your career path.

Auto Industry Employer Introduction:

* Hi, I'm considering a career in the auto industry and in the process of selecting a school to attend and would like to ask you (hiring manager, service manager, or technician) a couple of questions.

General Auto Career Path Questions:
  • How important is it to you for a mechanic to have an education from an accredited automotive school?
  • Are you familiar with A Automotive Institute, B Technical College, or C Trade School?
  • What can you tell me about their reputations and would you suggest attending one of the schools?
  • What do you look for in a (Auto Tech, Auto Body Technician, or Mechanic) and how important are certifications and credentials like ASE? Or I-CAR (Collision & Refinishing Specific)?
  • What was your career path into the auto industry and what might you suggest to an individual like me looking to become a trained automotive technician?
  • What's your opinion of the automotive industry and where do you see the future career opportunities and career paths for an individual like me?
  • Are you currently hiring any new auto techs or have plans to hire any additional technicians in the near future?
  • Do you find it difficult to find skilled technicians and would you consider hiring me after completing my education? (Optional Consider the person your talking to if you decide to ask the following question, but what could it hurt.) If, YES Would you consider sponsoring a portion of my training and education at an accredited automotive school if I was to work for you?

These questions should better help you understand what potential employers in the automotive industry are looking for and how they got their start as engine mechanics, auto body specialists, lead auto techs, service managers, etc. Take note of the connections you've made thus far and consider calling on a few more. The more connections and relationships you can build in the automotive industry, whether it's with friends, family, alumni, dealers, or independent shops the wider your potential network and opportunities for jobs become once you've completed your formal automotive education.