SAN FRANCISCO — NADA Chairman and longtime dealer Charlie Gilchrist is determined to do something about the retail auto industry's shortage of service technicians.
After all, technicians are quitting or retiring far faster than training programs can provide replacements. Yet seats in automaker-sponsored training programs go empty.
"Our industry is experiencing a dangerous shortage of technicians," Gilchrist said in his Jan. 26 keynote speech at the National Automobile Dealers Association Show here, announcing what NADA calls its Workforce Initiative. "This is not a can we can afford to kick down the road."
The problem is not new. But NADA's approach reflects a twist: The NADA Foundation, which is more typically associated with charitable contributions and emergency relief from natural disasters, is leading the Workforce Initiative.