With the ADS-B mandate deadline coming up fast, many are asking how tens of thousands of planes will get outfitted in time. After they learn how many unfilled avionics installer (and other aviation tech) jobs are going unfilled for want of qualified applicants, they should start worrying more.
A recent survey conducted by the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) highlighted the continuation of a troubling trend in the U.S. workforce—the lack of skilled technical workers. ARSA’s survey revealed that 55% of the 80 member companies that responded have unfilled positions. The group estimates that there are 1,045 open aviation-related technical jobs in its member companies alone. If that trend holds true for the rest of the FAA-certificated repair stations in the United States, ARSA says the number of open positions across the country may be close to 11,000.
“These numbers are a snapshot of how just one industry is being affected by the technical worker shortage plaguing the U.S. economy,” said ARSA Executive Vice President Christian Klein. “Well-paying jobs in the high-tech aviation maintenance sector are going unfilled because workers aren’t available or candidates lack basics skills.”
The survey was conducted during the first quarter of 2017. Overall, the companies surveyed listed “difficulty finding and retaining technical talent” and “regulatory costs/burdens” as the biggest risks to their businesses. If there truly are 11,000 open positions, ARSA says that the industry will forego as much as $1.95 billion in economic activity in 2017.
Learn more at ARSA.