Advancements in tech mean parking will become increasingly appealing to a new generation of jobseekers, writes Hannah Fuller, Client Director of PayByPhone UK.

If someone mentioned a career ‘in parking’ to university graduates a decade ago, chances are they would instinctually envision mundane days spent driving around a borough, enforcing parking restrictions and handing out fines to frustrated drivers. Today the profile of our industry looks very different. 

In a 2017 article on the complexities of parking, The Guardian reported that Britain is home to more than 30 million cars, which on average spend 95% of their time parked.1 Research from other sources indicate that the average UK motorist spends a staggering 106 days of their life looking for a parking spot.2 The reality is that whether we are drivers or passengers, service providers or consumers, parking is something that affects us all.

An industry in motion

For fifty years following the introduction of the very first parking meter in Britain in 1958, parking was a static affair, with coin-operated meters and pay-and-display machines dominating the market. Thanks to advancements in payment technology, automation and big data, however, parking and parking management today is exciting, dynamic and full of promise. 

Parking is a key component in the race to create smart cars and cities. In the foreseeable future, drivers will not only be able to start a parking session with the touch of a button from inside their car, but also the car will automatically locate the closest available parking spot, and park itself without the help of the driver. 

The entire parking industry is evolving at a rapid pace with increasing appeal for young jobseekers. The evolution of payment technology over the past ten years has opened up an array of interesting new career opportunities in areas such as app development, product marketing, account management and sales, to name a few. 

Ticking the boxes for Gen Z

More specifically, there is an opportunity for the industry as a whole to appeal to the socially-conscious Generation Z, who is now entering the workforce. This generation, as a group, comprises true digital natives, who are more likely than any of their predecessors to make consumer decisions based on commitment to social causes like environmental protection.3  

Mobility solutions such as cashless parking offer not only tech appeal, but also an important environmental aspect for jobseekers of this age group. Along with various other benefits to local authorities and consumers, cashless parking is environmentally-friendly because it reduces paper waste and removes the need for enforcement vehicles to drive around collecting cash from machines. Local authorities can also use mobile parking payment providers to assign ECO Tariffs to reward drivers of electric and hybrid vehicles with discounted parking rates. 

Finding and retaining talent

Career prospects in the parking industry are infinitely broader and more appealing today than they have ever been before. However, the UK is a competitive recruitment marketplace, where employees regard themselves as consumers with a choice about where they work. Just as parking is evolving with technology, organisations too have to keep pace with their employees. In order to attract the right kind of talent, we must offer exciting opportunities and the right kind of workplace.

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