NAPERVILLE, Ill. — Training and keeping up with new technology are top concerns for many independent vehicle repair shops and their automotive technicians, according to IMR Inc., an automotive market research firm.
According to IMR surveys, the top challenges for repair shops this year include:
- staying on top of advances in diagnostics (31.6% of respondents);
- lack of knowledgeable/motivated technicians (29.2%);
- funds for advertising (26%);
- higher prices for parts (16.6%); and
- diagnostic tools/software being too expensive (15.6%).
Despite an emphasis on keeping up with diagnostic technology, only 18% of shops with one to three bays prioritized that concern, compared with 37% of shops with four to seven bays and 38.3% of shops with eight-plus bays, according to IMR.
In addition, while shops mentioned keeping up with advances in vehicle technology as a challenge (31%), they also said they believe their technicians will be specifically challenged with having broad enough skills to be able to repair all types of vehicles (17.5%), including older, newer, foreign and electric/hybrid vehicles.