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CARBOREP: Harmonised Training for European Car Body Repair

Introduction

With over 200,000 working professionals and 50,000 companies, the European auto body repair industry is not only a way to get you back on the road, but also an important source of employment across Europe. Most employers are SMEs, and the continuing innovation in vehicle technology presents them with challenges in recruiting new and upskilling existing repair technicians.

One of the biggest developments in the past 10 years is the use of adhesive bonding, alongside or in addition to welding and mechanical fastening in auto body production and repair. The increasing use of adhesives is a prime example of why new skills and training for personnel in the automotive industry is of paramount importance.  

TWI led a consortium of project partners including the European Federation for Welding, Joining and Cutting (EWF), Asociación Española de Soldadura y Tecnologías de Unión (CESOL), and Instituto de Soldadura e Qualidade (ISQ), for the CARBOREP Erasmus+ Project to create a standardised training programme for car body repair technicians across Europe.

Objectives

CARBOREP created a harmonised training solution for personnel working in the car body repair sector that is aligned with the requirements of industry.

The project improved the quality of qualification programs related to the automotive industry in regards to content, methods, transparency and recognition between European countries (using common EU tools), as well as promoting the mobility of specialists in Europe.

CARBOREP also enhanced the integration and exploitation of the qualification to countries with lower engagement and access to these programs and, in turn, ensured competence among operators, including local shops and other independent operators.

The programme also promoted a high-quality curriculum featuring the latest technologies and manufacturing processes to help assure motor vehicle safety by ensuring repair and maintenance routines are performed correctly.

Outcomes

Co-funded by the European Union’s Erasmus+ programme, with a grant of over €400,000, the CARBOREP Project successfully delivered a harmonised training solution for personnel working in car body repair.

It increases the transparency of competences and qualifications in the automotive sector and supports the development of appropriately qualified and trained personnel, to address the shortages currently experienced by the industry within the EU, and enable the free movement of specialists across Europe.

Consisting of a modular curriculum, with set learning outcomes, an assessment scheme with theoretical and practical examinations, and training materials provided in English, Spanish and Portuguese, this multi-national qualification will promote language learning and linguistic diversity while increasing uptake and integration of the qualification across Europe.

Conclusion

Through the creation of a qualification and professional profile at a European level, CARBOREP is an example of how project objectives and results can contribute to achieving European Union targets to increase market relevance and reduce skills mismatches and shortages between nations.

The project defined key knowledge, skills and behaviours for vehicle repair and maintenance, and created the resources to deliver the expected outcome of addressing the needs of industry across Europe.

Ultimately, CARBOREP should enable an increased number of car bodies to be repaired rather than written off, reducing waste and restoring safety post-accident.

The training developed by this project should prove of interest to car manufacturers, insurance companies, repair garages, and national and international bodies and associations for automotive repair as well as vocational training providers.

For more information please email:


contactus@twi.co.uk