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Stacey Phillips

Stacey Phillips photo

Stacey Phillips is an award-winning writer for the automotive industry based in Southern California. She has more than 25 years of experience as an editor and writer and has assisted a wide range of businesses and fields. In addition, Stacey has co-authored two books.

 

She can be reached at stacey@radiantwriting.com. 

 
Tuesday, 08 February 2022 15:50

Techs of the Future: Matrix Trade Institute’s Efficiency Bootcamps Help Collision Repair Industry Grow and Retain Employees

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MTI instructor Jim Schnitz teaches proper mapping in MTI’s Blueprint/Technical Estimating Bootcamp. Participants included Kelly Henry from Classic/DCR Systems, Christopher Lutz from Rutherford Autobody and Mitchell Rife from CollisionRight’s Rife’s Autobody (with pen). MTI instructor Jim Schnitz teaches proper mapping in MTI’s Blueprint/Technical Estimating Bootcamp. Participants included Kelly Henry from Classic/DCR Systems, Christopher Lutz from Rutherford Autobody and Mitchell Rife from CollisionRight’s Rife’s Autobody (with pen).

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...a retention problem,” said Peugeot. “Retention is different today than it used to be… you have to have a better offering with a better path and execution, and it has to be fulfilling and meaningful for employees. There’s too much competition to be able to afford not getting it right.”

 

With people defecting from the industry for jobs with companies like Amazon or Walmart that promise career paths filled with attractive promises and benefits, or competing trades that are paying more and more for services every day, Peugeot said the industry is missing a vital connection point between the skills needed to succeed and the industry’s ability to provide ongoing career development that allows new hires to see the vision and grow as fast as they’d like to.

 

“Employees need real, tangible career education so they can learn and earn simultaneously and have confidence that it’s going to connect to real development,” he said. “I think that’s what the traditional model is missing right now and that’s what we offer.”

 

To help address the growing concern of recruiting, developing and retaining the next generation of technicians, Peugeot established MTI in 2019 with Rick Blum, COO.

 

When the institute first opened, its primary focus was to offer automotive efficiency training for auto technicians and mechanics. Peugeot and Blum soon recognized the vital need for collision technicians and expanded the program to include a collision repair technical efficiency program.

 

The training encompasses a 20-week, employer-centric, 80% hands-on repetition-based curriculum with an eight-to-one teacher-student ratio. The goal is to prepare graduates to work in dealerships, collision centers and franchised and/or independent repair facilities. Students attend class in the mornings throughout the week and are encouraged to intern with a repair facility in the afternoons. This allows them to apply the hands-on training they learn at school.

 

With tradespeople in such high demand, MTI aims to provide job-ready automotive and collision technicians who don’t necessarily have industry experience. Peugeot said MTI differs from the traditional model where students attend a couple of years of school and receive a broad certification. Instead, the institute teaches...