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Drive Motor Retail introduces new rewards scheme for automotive apprentices

Awards winner: Drive Motor Retail Technician of the Year for 2021, Dan Buckle

Drive Motor Retail is marking National Apprenticeship Week with a new rewards scheme that will will fund its apprentices’ driving lessons in a bid to attract its next generation of technicians.

The AM100 car retail group has also formalised a bonus structure aimed at retaining vehicle technician apprentices after they qualify through schemes run in partnership with the Stellantis and the Vauxhall Training Academy.

Announcing the changes in National Apprenticeship Week (February 7 to 13), Vauxhall, MG and Citroen franchisee, Drive, revealed apprentices at its 16 UK dealerships will benefit from paid-for driving lessons; a monetary reward six months after qualifying; and further guaranteed bonus payments during years three and five after their qualification.

Apprentices who qualified in 2021 will also be entitled to the new benefits and will be paid their first reward retrospectively, it added.

Drive’s aftersales director, James Godley, said: “We are delighted to introduce this new reward scheme which we hope will attract the best young talent to the Drive team.

“We recognise the importance of developing the next generation of vehicle technicians, especially at such an uncertain time for the industry with the need for electric vehicle technicians becoming more prevalent in the coming years.

“We have had great success with our apprenticeship programme, and it is something we are keen to continually develop and grow.

“We know that these individuals are the next generation of talent for our company and currently have opportunities across many of our sites across the UK.”

Competition is hotting-up in the pursuit of young recruits in the automotive retail sector.

The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) has warned there will be a shortfall of almost 36,000 EV-trained technicians by 2030 if retraining isn’t addressed urgently.

Last month AM reported that Vertu Motors has launched a nationwide apprenticeship programme aiming to fill 120 customer service vacancies.

Bowker Motor Group, meanwhile, has struck-up a new automotive technical skills partnership with Preston College with the aim of boosting the confidence of apprentices.

Dan Buckle recently completed a three-year apprenticeship as a technician at Drive Leamington Spa and is now fully qualified.

He was awarded Technician of the Year for 2021 at Drive’s company awards in December.

Buckle said: “Being recognised as Technician of the Year was a massive achievement for me. It was great to know that my hard work had been recognised and it massively boosted my confidence.

“Even if you don’t have experience with cars, the technician apprenticeship gives you lots of skills you will have forever and sets you up with a great career path. The workshop is never quiet and there’s always something going on. I’m excited for the future.”

 

 

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