Figures forecast nearly 65,000 more EV technicians needed by 2030 to meet demand

The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) has reported the total number of technicians trained to work safely on electric vehicles at the end of March 2023 was 42,400. This represents just 18 per cent of all technicians in the UK.

 And according to its EV Technician Forecast Report, the number of newly qualified EV technicians in the first three months of 2023 was 10 per cent lower than the same period in 2022.

The IMI projects there will be an even more substantial decline of 31 per cent in technicians obtaining EV qualifications for the second quarter compared to quarter two in 2022.

It believes several factors are contributing to the shortfall in EV upskilling. As the average age of the UK vehicle parc increases, the time required by technicians working on internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles also rises, reducing available time for retraining.

The significant skills gap across the sector is also forcing employers to ‘park’ new skills training in order to meet customer demand. Plus, training budgets are being refunnelled into ‘business-as-usual’ operations as employers manage the current economic pressures.

The significance of this to the government’s decarbonisation ambitions could be huge. By 2030, the IMI predicts the UK will require 107,000 IMI TechSafe-qualified technicians to meet the evolving demands of electric vehicles.

This figure rises to 139,000 by 2032. At that point, IMI projections indicate a potential shortfall of 25,000 technicians if the current trends persist.

Steve Nash, CEO of the IMI said: “More electric and hybrid vehicles are joining the UK car parc every day, but the number of technicians trained to safely maintain, service and repair them is simply not keeping pace.”