Nicola Mascard, Operations Director at Audatex UK was one of 40 women recently recognised for her contribution to the automotive sector at ABP’s inaugural ‘Women of Influence’ awards.
Women of Influence is one of the ways the sector is showcasing the huge variety of careers held by women in all areas – from bodyshop managers and insurance companies, to supply chain and OEM.
The event took place in Loughborough in Leicestershire and welcomed key industry players from across the UK to discuss and observe the need for a more diverse workforce.
A lively debate amongst prolific women in the industry sparked some interesting conversations about whether there was a need for a separate forum for women, the job opportunities for women and why female technicians are in the minority.
Many attendees shared their observations about career progression for women in the sector and the barriers and prejudices that can arise, but the majority in the room agreed they are increasingly becoming a thing of the past.
Throughout the day, discussions moved beyond the topic of gender and instead focused on how the industry can encourage the younger generation as a whole to join a career in the automotive industry, regardless of their gender. A particular challenge that struck a chord with several attendees was the issue of attracting young people into the industry with the right skills, with many saying school visits and university open days, while a step in the right direction, weren’t enough to drive interest.
The resounding take home message from the day was the need for the industry as a whole to do more to ‘Market’ the fantastic opportunities and career paths available to anyone who joins the industry.
Audatex says it is looking forward to supporting the industry as it enters a new era of change and keeping pace with rapid digital transformation.