Auto Service World
News   February 15, 2024   by Adam Malik

The key role for older techs in an AI world

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Artificial intelligence in the automotive repair sector can only be as good as the technicians who are working with it behind the scenes.

Tilak Kasturi, founder and CEO of Predii, an AI solutions provider for the aftermarket, observed that what’s helping create good data in automotive AI is bringing in seasoned technicians who can parse the data and help AI understand what it’s found and what it needs to look for.

“I see that in the future where the technicians — not only they’re good at [using a] ratchet and wrench;  they’re hands-on people — but they would be powering some of these expert-based [AI platforms],” he said during the session, ChatGPT & AI Applications for the Aftermarket, a panel discussion during the MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers Aftermarket Technology Conference.

These are experts who know their data, the tools to be used and the parts needed to do the job. This is what helps technicians be more efficient when they get data that had a real pro working in the background.

This makes him optimistic about facing the challenge of the technician shortage and overcoming the daunting learning curve.

“The moment you throw in AI, I actually think the workforce is going to get transformed,” Kasturi predicted.

Think about the older technician who just can’t handle the day-to-day tasks in a shop but has decades of knowledge, Scott Brown, industry ambassador with Diagnostic Network, pointed out.

“It also could extend the usefulness of, say, an aged technician that can no longer function because their back is shot. They can turn into the triage specialist in the shop that basically takes the AI, takes the vehicle info and then preps a repair path to assign to the other technicians in the shop,” he said.

They can also be mentors when they’re working with younger techs, using AI as an aid to teach younger techs how to troubleshoot and do repairs.

“Train them on how to get around in this new technology and [teach] them some of the historic things that they’ve had to deal with,” Brown said.

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3 Comments » for The key role for older techs in an AI world
  1. Bob Ward says:

    All AI will do is train techs not to think. You cannot rely on AI for assistance in the auto service sector. Look how well it worked with autonomous driving vehicles! We need techs who are analytical and thinkers, not ones who will rely on AI. Our education system needs improvement instead of developing AI.

  2. CRAIG WALTER says:

    All I will say is, Bob Ward is right. Most guys out here change the O2 sensor because that’s the code he received. He better know why the light came on. The End

  3. Mike says:

    Don’t think AI will just dive in and say replace a part but would guide tech along a diagnostic testing approach. This is already used in scan tools.

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