Auto manufacturers constantly introduce new technology
with every new model. Features such as back-up cameras,
lane drift detectors, ‘smart’ suspensions, and cars that
anticipate and prepare for collisions in a split second are only
a fraction of what has been rolled out in just the past five
Each advance increases interrelationships and dependencies among
the various systems in a vehicle. Think of the components of a
collision avoidance feature; in a split second, sensors can warn
the driver of danger, tighten seat belts, inflate seats for extra
support, position head rests in case of whiplash, and
de-accelerate and engage the brakes if necessary.
In the past brakes, restraint systems, fuel systems and power
seats were independent of each other; you could work on one
without affecting the others. Now technicians need a
thorough understanding of how each system and component is
affected or affects one or more others. A lack of knowledge
can be the difference between a correct, profitable repair or an
aggravating, drawn out, hands-on experience that frustrates the
technician and the customer that ultimately erases profits.
Avoiding costly mistakes during repairs is only one benefit of
training. Technicians who feel their boss is committed to helping
them become better at their job are more likely to remain with
their company. For the technician, training can mean the
difference between advancement on the job and more earning power,
or even keeping their job or unemployment.
In the past, training meant sitting in classroom and hours away
from work; today, training can be accessed on-line and after
hours. Many manufacturers offer on-line training
specifically for their products. There are also numerous
providers available such as ASE, I-Car, CDX and a host of
others. Some sites require a significant investment; others
offer information such as ASE study guides for free.
Content ranges from the basics to YMME specifics. Some time
spent researching these resources can help a shop decide what
best suits the needs of their business.
For a shop training is as much an investment in a shop as
purchasing new tools and equipment. It means not having to turn
customers away because no one knows how to do the work. It means
fewer come-backs because of incorrect repairs, or worse, damage
to a customer’s vehicle. It means a better reputation and
more referrals from satisfied customers. Training should be
a part of the shop’s business plan as much as pricing, marketing
and other business strategies.