AdvisorSmith ranks Auburn as no. 3 midsize city for auto workers

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Special to the
Opelika Observer

Auburn was ranked as the no. 3 midsize city for auto technicians and mechanics, according to a new 388-city study by AdvisorSmith.
Auburn ranked #8 overall in the study of 388 cities, beating out Birmingham (#38), Dothan (#79) and Gadsden (#81).
Auburn hosts 27% more jobs for auto technicians and mechanics on a per-capita basis compared with the U.S. average.
The average annual salary for service techs in Auburn is $50,340, 15% above the national average, while the cost of living is 6% below the average.
Automotive service technicians and mechanics are tasked with inspecting, maintaining and repairing cars and light trucks. While they generally work on traditional mechanical systems, such as engines and transmissions, today’s service techs must also be skilled in the growing number of electronic systems being built into modern vehicles. As newer vehicles house more complex systems, particularly with electric and self-driving vehicles, the demand for skilled service technicians is growing. Given this high demand, auto technicians and mechanics have the ability to settle down in a myriad of locations, but where exactly are the best opportunities for service techs?
AdvisorSmith’s study ranked 388 U.S. cities to determine the most attractive cities for automotive technicians and mechanics to pursue their careers in.
Their analysis found that many of the best cities for auto technicians and mechanics are small and midsize cities. Smaller cities have, on average, a more geographically spread out footprint than high-density cities, fueling higher demand for cars and more miles driven, meaning more job opportunities for auto technicians and mechanics. Coupled with lower costs of living, smaller cities won out in the study, with nine of the top-10 and 43 of the top-50 cities having populations under 500,000 citizens.
Methodology
AdvisorSmith’s study examined three key variables in determining the best cities for auto technicians and mechanics to pursue their careers in.

  1. Average annual salaries for auto technicians and mechanics
    They considered the average annual salary earned by service technicians in each city in the study. The higher the average salary, the more highly they ranked a given metro area. The average salary for auto technicians and mechanics in the study was $43,730.
  2. Density of jobs for auto technicians and mechanics in each city
    Automotive service technicians and mechanics have a special set of skills that require post-secondary education or on-the-job training. Given this, they ranked cities that have a higher concentration of jobs for service techs relative to the general worker population as more desirable. This density is represented by the location quotient in the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment data.
    In 2018, there were 648,050 auto technicians and mechanics employed in the United States. The BLS predicts that employment for auto technicians and mechanics will grow at a 6 % pace over the 10-year period of 2016-2026, which is in line with the national job growth outlook.
  3. Cost of living index for each city
    They adjusted the salaries earned by auto technicians and mechanics in each city by a cost of living multiplier. The cost of living, including necessities such as rent, transportation, and groceries, varies by city, so it is important to normalize the salaries so that the cities can be compared fairly. Cities with more affordable lifestyles were ranked more highly in their study.
    Read the entire study at www.advisorsmith.com/data/best-cities-for-auto-technicians-mechanics/.

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