9 Secrets to Recruiting Outstanding Automotive Technicians

By Ted Ings, Executive Director 

There’s no denying the fact automotive technicians are at a premium throughout the United States.

Even “borderline” techs are getting scooped out of trade school well before they graduate. How can you beat out the competition and find competent wrench turners? 

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Competition for technicians is fierce – just posting an advertisement on Craigslist doesn’t cut it anymore. To hire top-notch help, you’ve got to get creative. These strategies will help you do exactly that. 

1. Get involved at the local tech college or trade school

Every local shop is at the career fair. To set yourself apart, you need to get involved at a deeper level. Joining the school’s advisory board is one tactic. Sponsoring a class is also an excellent idea since it allows you to decorate the room with marketing materials. Your brand will be become instantly recognizable (and hopefully, cool) to the students. “

2. Visit high schools

Most teenagers have no idea what they want to do. Present the option of becoming an automotive technician by visiting the local high schools (middle schools aren’t out of the question, either). Teens with fresh driver’s licenses are enamored with cars and trucks, making them easy converts.

And here' a biggie...
3. Become hip (or lit, as the young people say)

Millennials and young people from generation Z aren’t thumbing through newspaper help wanted ads. To reach out to these groups, you have to be present where they are – and that means going on social media. Get your business on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, no matter how opposed you may be. You can reach out to potential candidates on LinkedIn as well.
Finally, if there are events, such as concerts and festivals young people will be attending, you may want to advertise there. 

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4. Post an online advertisement with a catchy headline

Craigslist may be on the decline, but that doesn’t mean online advertising is a total bust. There are several sites worth posting on. Right now, Indeed and CareerBuilder are popular. On many job web pages, you can pay to “boost” your posting to increase visibility. 


It’s also crucial that your listing has a catchy headline. For example: “$3,000 Sign on Bonus for Topnotch Auto Technicians” or “Full-time Mechanic Wanted – Never Work Weekends Again!” Find something to include in the title that sets your business apart from the rest.  

5. Increase the effectiveness of your advertisement with SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) tactics are used to get your advertisement more views. It’s a marketing strategy that can put your job posting near the top of the heap for any search engine query. If you’re not an SEO guru yourself, you can always hire an expert. Many freelancers are available on sites such as UpWork.

6. Create online content

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Good marketing content, whether it be blogs or YouTube videos, can draw a lot of traffic. If you can make something intriguing that goes viral – even better. One thing to keep in mind is that content creation is generally an extension of SEO practices. So, you may need some outside assistance to get things rolling. 

7. Become likable by being helpful

As often as you can, be helpful to those around you. The person you lend a hand to today might have a lead for you tomorrow. For example, if you give a former employee a letter of recommendation, they’re far more likely to provide you technician referrals. Doing small favors for people makes you likable – and that will put you ahead of the competition. 

8.  Recruit from the military

The military has many competent individuals in its mechanics program. Not only have these service members developed technical aptitude but also discipline and work ethic. Both veterans and active personnel can be transformed into talented, civilian automotive technicians. 

9. Hold an open house/technology clinic

Holding an open house with complimentary snacks and drinks is another way to attract applicants. Many college and tech school students can be drawn in with the offer of free food. Post flyers announcing the event on campuses and broadcast it on social media.


Once you have potential candidates through the door, present them with a clean, friendly work environment – a place they’d want to be. 

Get started immediately  

Don’t wait any longer to find the ideal technician. Reach out and try these new strategies to build your service team. 

Finding technicians is a lot easier if you know where and how to look. Use these nine practices to recruit the perfect employee.