NEW research has revealed that more than half of UK adults believe that young girls are discouraged from a career in mechanics because it’s a male-dominated industry.
According to the poll of 2,007 UK consumers for online car repair marketplace ClickMechanic, 58 per cent said the gender imbalance had a negative influence on a young girl’s decision to enter into the workshop profession.
Other factors highlighted included 50 per cent feeling that the stereotype of a mechanic would put young girls off, while 40 per cent believed that the lack of role models had a significant influence.
Meanwhile, 34 per cent blamed a lack of exposure to the opportunity, 21 per cent believed that a fear of the opinions of friends’ played a noteworthy role, and the same number also assumed that the physical labour involved discouraged young girls.
Twenty per cent felt that young girls were concerned with their family’s opinions dissuading them from the career, and 20 per cent also believed that a mechanic’s lack of opportunity to progress as a career path would have an impact.
Factors receiving the least amount of blame included school, of which 14 per cent felt had a negative influence, and at the end of the table, pay, which only six per cent argued would act as a discouragement.
As such, there is a sense that the current imbalance of gender in the industry as well as the position’s dated reputation of being a ‘man’s job’, is believed to put off more young girls than its potential as a career path. Indeed, almost 3x as many people believe that its being a male-dominated industry will put-off the decision, compared to the physical labour involved or the lack of opportunity to progress in it as a career. In addition, there are almost 10x more people which believe that gender imbalance is likely to discourage, compared to the wage.
Andrew Jervis, co-founder of ClickMechanic, which won Best Tech Product of the Year, Product Innovation of the Year and the Extra Mile Award at this year’s Workshop Power Awards, said: ‘It is sad to see a number of industries, such as car repair, still being dominated by one gender. Whilst there has been some improvement over the years for mechanics, there is still an obvious imbalance which needs to change.
‘There is no reason a woman cannot excel in this career, and as such, young girls should not be negatively influenced if they show an interest.’
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