Bridging The Skills Gap In Electric Vehicle Technicians In 2024 

 

The rapid adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) presents a significant challenge for the automotive service industry. A skills gap looms large, with a concerning 2023 report revealing a stark regional disparity in EV technician qualifications across the UK. Only 7 local authorities in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland boast a workforce where 10% or more technicians are qualified to work on electric vehicles. Furthermore, the IMI predicts that by 2030 the sector will need more than 107,000 EV trained technicians, increasing to 139,000 by 2032, and 185,000 by 2035. With this skills gap in mind, the AWARE Series team dives into 3 examples of electric vehicle processes technicians should be trained in to bridge the skills gap, to prepare for the EV-centric automotive market.

1 - Safe & Effective EV Repair Procedures

EV repair demands specialized knowledge and manufacturer-approved practices. Training should delve into proper procedures for servicing various EV components, including battery packs, electric motors, and high-voltage systems.

EVs also generate unique waste products. Technicians should be trained in understanding how to identify and safely handle spent batteries, capacitors, and other EV-specific components.  Following proper disposal procedures is crucial to avoid environmental contamination and comply with regulations.  This ensures responsible environmental practices alongside safe and effective repairs. 

 

2 - Maintaining Thermal Management Systems

Electric vehicles (EVs) rely on efficient thermal management systems to maintain optimal operating temperatures for both the battery pack and electric motor. Battery performance and lifespan can be significantly impacted by temperature fluctuations, and electric motors can lose efficiency or even suffer damage if they overheat.

It is important for technicians to understand the cooling loop in Electric Vehicles.

EV technicians need to be familiar with both liquid-cooled and air-cooled battery thermal management systems.

For liquid-cooled systems, technicians should be able to identify and service coolant pumps, replace thermal interface materials (TIMs) that transfer heat from the battery to the coolant, and inspect/maintain coolant lines and connectors for leaks or damage.

For air-cooled systems, the focus is on servicing air cooling fans and keeping air intake and exhaust vents clear of dust and debris to ensure proper airflow and prevent overheating. 

3 - Staying Current with EV Technology

The EV landscape is constantly evolving.  Equipping technicians with the ability to stay up-to-date is crucial. Training should emphasize the importance of ongoing education and provide resources for staying current on advancements in EV technology and repair techniques. This could include industry training programs, subscriptions to relevant publications, and online learning platforms.

The benefit of receiving AWARE Series training is that our courses incorporate the latest Electric Vehicle safety regulations and knowledge  into our framework. We also are a knowledge leader in the industry, with a range of free content and eBooks we have to offer.

The past six months have been a period of significant progress in the world of electric vehicles (EVs).  While advancements in consumer features have grabbed headlines, the focus on technician safety and efficiency hasn't been neglected. Here's a breakdown of key developments.

 

AI-powered Diagnostics and Troubleshooting:

AI is making its mark on EV diagnostics. Advanced software analyzes sensor data, identifies potential problems, and suggests repair solutions. This is particularly helpful for tackling complex electrical issues or pinpointing faults within high-voltage systems.

 

Cloud-based Service Data Management Systems:

 

Cloud-based systems streamline the service process. Technicians can access and store vital service information like repair history, diagnostic reports, and manufacturer procedures for each vehicle. This centralized data repository improves efficiency and ensures technicians have the most up-to-date information at their fingertips.

 

Of course, these are just a few examples of where technicians should be trained with EVs to help bridge the current skills gap in the UK.

By partnering with the AWARE Series, technicians can gain the specialized knowledge and practical skills needed to thrive in the world of EVs.  From online training modules delivered through AWARE Series TV to bespoke Electric Vehicle training programs, automotive businesses have a complete suite of electric vehicle courses to choose from, to be ahead of the game. 

AWARE Series offers training courses for all levels of professionals who work with Electric Vehicles on a daily basis.

Our EV & HybridAWARE Course trains delegates on the basics of Electric Vehicles, including identifying the key components of the EV & Hybrid side, and how to power up and power down these systems safely.

If you would like to view all our Electric Vehicle Training courses, click here.

Gary Tucker, Managing Director of Network Training Partnership

Awarded the 'Outstanding Contribution to the Motor Industry' by the Institute of the Motor Industry at their 2020 Centenary Awards and a finalist in the Talent in Logistics Industry Ambassador Awards 2020.

A dynamic, entrepreneurial personality and strategic leader with a proactive attitude and history of proven success within the Military and Commercial sectors. Can be relied upon to always produce outstanding results in exceptionally high-pressure situations.