Why are there shortages of tradesman in the automotive industry?
Many argue this issue stems from a monetary issue, stating that its impossible to earn a significant salary without taking the risks involved in becoming self-employed. Comparative to the corporate sector this is not an accurate argument. Many technicians we have had the pleasure of knowing and working with over the past decade are currently earning between $80 – $150K. Some of this is with performance-based incentive payments.
The reason for this shortage I believe has little to do with possible income and in fact, goes all the way back to the grassroots. I believe it is fuelled by our high school education system.
Using one high school we gathered up all those students finishing up school this year with the plan to enter the workforce or continue their education at a third party. A class of 97 students graduating year twelve and a further 33 collective from both year eleven and students who have completed year ten but choose not to continue the Higher School Certificate. These numbers leave us with exactly 130 students.
We then asked all those who have either legitimately secured a position at a university or have very serious intentions to go to university to leave the room. Following these students the next to be asked to leave were those who planned travel and have “life experiences” for the next twelve to eighteen months. After both these selective groups departed we were left with 26 students.
26 possible students, both male and female to either enter a trade-based industry or to have occupations requiring no long-term qualifications (supermarket work, bartending etc)
Of the 130 students, we were left with only 26 people to fill much-needed positions in childcare, carpentry, mechanics, real estate, plumbing, hairdressing and so on. Of these 26 only 12 would be classed as genuine possibilities for successful career development within trade-based industries.
The conclusion is the schooling system has identified these twelve students as particularly gifted with the use of the right hemisphere of the brain. These students are gifted with insight, artistic talent, and musical talent. They are also able to imagine and view problems within their mind in three demotions. Students more dominant in the left hemisphere are far more linear in problem-solving and traditionally are gifted in sciences, maths, and English. Young children with extremely dominant right hemisphere activity are rapidly accused of having attention disorders such as ADHD and too frequently are medicated into “calming down” and attempting to activate the left hemisphere of the brain. Effectively the schooling system has trained the vast majority of students to be suitable for a university by either enhancing the already dominant left hemisphere or training from an early age, those with dominant right hemispheres to shift to the left.
The problem at hand is the trades require students who think and use the right hemisphere and universities require students who think and use the left. It’s not hard to see why our numbers seem to be somewhat favorable towards the university entrants and this creates a huge skills shortage in the trade-based occupations.
However, there is an additional problem which is adding to the already heavy burden employees of tradespeople face.
Of the 26, one could realistically argue that anywhere from 6 to 9 of these students are nearly unemployable. One needs to examine the requirements to be deemed “unemployable” but for the purposes of this task, the prerequisite was solely attitude. Almost one-quarter of applicants available for trades had attitudes no human being should ever have to co-exist, let alone co-inhabit or become a coworker of. The causes for these attitudes are a multitude of social and economic problems which will not be rectified overnight. What is important to take from this is that there were six to nine students that didn’t really belong in any real “employment category” and as opposed to finding solutions to help and improve these young people they were bunched together with the group that ranked below 40 on university entrant exams.
These exams are designed to identify students who are dominant with the left hemisphere it does not determine stupidity all it does is identify if you would be suitable for practical hands-on employment such as a trade or if you’re better suited in universities. The result is the “no-hopers of society” those students with vile attitudes, values that are in serious need of realigning and ethics that no mother taught any child, these students get bunched in with the right hemisphere students. The solution to this problem is unknown but the current issue is bong smoking deadbeats are encouraged to enter trade-based employment rather than get on the straight and narrow.
Because it is just too hard to deal with the problem, the buck is passed and young people who just need a decent smack in the lip and told to pull their head in are encouraged to get a trade. The result of all of this is there is an outright shortage of employable young people and the knock-on from that is there is an even greater shortage of tradesman. What’s even more troubling is young people with legitimate opportunities to excel within these industries are tarnished with the same brush and not given the opportunities they deserve by employers who are now “once bitten, twice shy”