Ready to start a fulfilling career? Looking for a change in job scenery? Maybe it’s time for you to consider a career in the automotive industry. Automotive technicians are always in demand, whether they’re restoring headlights or doing a turtle wax job on someone’s vehicle.
If you’re interested in the automotive market, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind before you get started, from pursuing certificates in automotive service excellence to finding your specialty in the industry.
Think of it from a consumer’s perspective: Would you rather choose a service that is certified in working with diesel engines or one that isn’t? Chances are, you’d probably opt for the one that has the added qualifications. Automotive and diesel certifications can really beef up your resume and make you look that much more impressive to prospective customers. Unfamiliar with diesel technology? Try a diesel technology program. While you don’t have to go through a degree program to become a diesel mechanic, per se, an ASE certification can help you compensate if you don’t have years of work experience in the industry.
A good place to start is the National Automotive Technician Education Foundation. The foundation’s track record of academic excellence with automotive technology and automotive repair can help you link up with the right diesel programs and receive your ASE certification. The ASE certification test is just one part of a longer test series that can pad your resume and give you the added qualifications that supplement years of work experience. Of course, if you’re interested in a degree program, that’s a viable route, too. An associate’s degree program in diesel technology or an apprenticeship can help you break into the industry more quickly.
To Specialize or Not to Specialize?
So, you’ve passed your degree program and ASE certification test, and you’re now a qualified diesel mechanic. What next? There are several paths you can take after you’ve received the right education. You could opt to start your own automotive shop that handles a wide variety of general repairs. Or you could join an existing shop as a specialist.
Say, for instance, you’re interested in headlight restoration and electronic systems. You’ve worked with tail lights and directional lights and know how to install headlight restoration kits for greater ease of use. Naturally, you’d want to find a shop that doesn’t have a current expert in headlight restorer kits. For the best results, you’ll want to prove your mettle with a car’s headlights and tail lights. You should also be able to recommend headlight lenses and the best headlight restoration kits on the market.
Of course, you could also open your own shop and still specialize in something like headlight repair, replacement of lenses and fog lights, and abrasive discs. As long as you have the right power tools—from a power drill to restoration pads for diesel repair—you can specialize in just about anything you want.
While it’s important to pursue the right certification programs at the beginning of your career, you’ll likely have to be re-certified at some point or another. Plus, as diesel technology and automotive technology continue to develop and advance, you’ll want to keep up with the latest products and repair methods. Continued education is important for every mechanic, technician, and repair serviceman. Don’t neglect ongoing education or you could find yourself falling behind your competition.
The automotive industry is always in need of fresh talent. If you’re ready to change up your careers, you can get the best results by pursuing certifications and specialties. All of these can make you a more viable candidate for hiring or starting your own company.