Josh is a student at Woodbrook Vale School. He researched careers in the automotive industry for us while he was in the CASCAID office on work experience.
Even if cars aren’t your big passion, the automotive industry has loads of exciting jobs on offer — from working in a garage, fixing engines and bodywork, working on cutting-edge research for self-driving vehicles or doing sales in a luxury car showroom. The automotive industry has lots to offer in terms of career choice.
Careers in the automotive industry are varied and include mechanic, vehicle technician and MOT tester, automotive engineers, even graphic design.
Automotive engineering involves the research, design, development and manufacturing of vehicles. As an automotive engineer you would specialise and work on one part of a car or vehicle. What you would do as an automotive engineer would depend on the specialist area that you work in. It could include using computer-aided design, problem solving, inspecting or building prototypes or electrical and electronic work.
Mechanics are responsible for repairing and correcting faults in vehicles. They quickly diagnose a problem and correct it. They also carry out regular checks to prevent breakdowns.
In the automotive industry marketing is important and making your vehicle or brand stand out is crucial. As a graphic designer in the automotive industry you would design things like logos and marketing material that give a positive impression of the business at the same time as ‘selling’ the product or brand.
According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), a total of 1.7 million cars were produced in the UK in 2016 and by 2020 it could exceed two million, increasing the need for skilled engineers to meet the demand. The industry has invested in apprenticeships and training which means more opportunities for young people to take up an automotive career.
The development of new technologies means that people with existing automotive jobs will probably need extra training. As the technologies used in cars change, young people training for jobs such as mechanic or other careers where you design, build, maintain and repair cars will also probably need to develop different skills than those that are used now.
UK automotive — the numbers
- 814,000 people employed in the UK automotive sector
- 169,000 people employed in automotive manufacturing
- 41,000 people employed in the UK motorsport industry
- 25,000 new jobs expected in automotive manufacturing to build connected and autonomous vehicles
- 2,500 automotive component providers in the UK
- 1,816,622 vehicles produced by UK car manufacturers in 2016
- 93,924 UK commercial vehicles manufactured in 2016
- 2,545,608 engines built in 2016
- 30 Million+ vehicles serviced a year
- 78,000 people employed in the supply chain