Certified Technician Program

What is the Certified Technician Program? 

The AED Foundation Certified Technician Program allows technicians to earn a professional industry certification by successfully passing an online technical assessment. The benefits of becoming AED Foundation Certified include: 

  • Showing your professional commitment 
  • Earning recognition for yourself, your dealership and from your peers 
  • Demonstrating that your skills fully align with The AED Foundation’s industry-developed technical standards 
  • Proving you can complete equipment repairs properly the first time 
  • Investing in your career 


What is the workforce shortage? 

The Equipment Industry Technician Shortage: Reassessing Causes, Impacts and Policy Recommendations research report provides an updated look at the impact the skills gap is having on our industry, estimates how many technician positions will need to be filled over the next five years, and provides recommendations for addressing the technician shortage. 

Highlights of the report include: 

  • The need to fill up to 73,500 heavy equipment technicians over the next five years 
  • The equipment industry has a job opening rate three times higher than the national average 
  • Almost 90% of AED member dealerships have a job opening rate above the national average 
  • Among AED member respondents, 95% agree there is a skills gap in the industry and 89% report a shortage of workers in their company 
  • The AED Foundation, through its Vision 2025 initiative, is creating a steady and robust pipeline of technicians for the future of the equipment distribution industry. By 2025, the Foundation is aiming to reach the following goals; 100 accredited college programs, 50 recognized high school programs, 10,000 skilled technicians entering the workforce, 500 certified managers, 10,000 tests administered, and 5,000 certified technicians. 

Concurrent with the report release, the Caterpillar Foundation announced a $300,000 grant to The AED Foundation to fund scholarships to high schools interested in promoting a curriculum that leads to a career in the heavy equipment industry. To view the report, click here. 



What has The AED Foundation done to combat the workforce shortage? 

In order to combat the equipment industry’s workforce shortage, the Foundation plans to bring a pipeline of skilled workers into the industry by involving students, schools and dealer members with our Vision 2025 initiative. This includes increasing the quantity of technicians and quality through The AED Foundation’s accredited and recognized school programs. Both aspects play an essential role in building a strong foundation for the future of the industry. See how AEDF breaks Vision 2025 down into numbers here.   


The Five Ways to Become AEDF Certified 
















The AED Foundation (AEDF) offers premier educational programs for high school and college students planning to become diesel technicians, but opportunities from AEDF don’t stop there. The Foundation provides aspiring managers with self-study courses to develop their knowledge on specialized topics and course bundles, known as Certified Manager Programs (CMP). These programs differ based on individual career goals at a dealership. Essential courses, including financial management, people management and sales/customer service management, are featured in all CMPs. The remaining courses in each program are focused on the specific needs of the department in the dealership. 

The Foundation has broken down the details of each program, including salary averages and course load below: 

Parts Manager Certification Program
Participants in the Parts Manager Certification Program will gain general leadership skills, develop planning techniques specific to parts department needs, and learn how to optimize customer benefits and sales. 

  • Courses: Financial Management 101 & 102, People Management 101,102 & 103, Sales/Customer Service 101, Parts Management 101, Parts Management 201, Final Certification Test 
  • Salary Expectations: 50K-75K 

Service Manager Certification Program
AEDF’s Service Manager Certification Program covers both general leadership courses as well as service management courses. Participants can expect to learn about service operation standards, selling techniques and service management tips. 

  • Courses: Financial Management 101 & 102,People Management 101, 102 & 103,Sales/Customer Service 101,Service Management 101,Service Management 201, Final Certification Test 
  • Salary Expectations: 55K-85K 

Branch Manager Certification Program
The Foundation’s Branch Manager Certification Program offers the opportunity not only to learn essential leadership skills, but gain background knowledge on parts management, rental management and service management to manage all areas of the branch effectively. 

  • Courses: Financial Management 101 & 102, People Management 101, 102 & 103, Sales/Customer Service 101, Parts Management 101, Service Management 101, Rental Management 101, Final Certification Test 
  • Salary Expectations: 75K-145K 

Sales Manager Certification Program
The AED Foundation’s Sales Manager Certification Program allows participants to gain leadership skills and refine their sales techniques, with key knowledge on how to retain and motivate your team and forecast sales. 

  • Courses: Financial Management 101 & 102, People Management 101, 102 & 103, Sales/Customer Service 101, Sales Leadership 101, Sales Leadership 201, Final Certification Test 
  • Salary Expectations: 80K-160K 

Rental Manager Certification Program
AEDF’s Rental Manager Certification Program features courses that help develop professional leadership skills and training on fundamental parts of the position, including rental management, rental sales, and rental operations. 

  • Courses: Financial Management 101 & 102, People Management 101, 102 & 103, Sales/Customer Service 101, Rental Management 101, Rental Management 201, Rental Management 301, Final Certification Test 
  • Salary Expectations: 50K-85K 


Interested in becoming certified? 

If you haven’t already passed The AED Foundation Technical Assessment 

If you have already passed The AED Foundation Technical Assessment 

Note: purchase only if you have your official AED Foundation Technical Assessment results report available right now as an electronic image file to upload. 

For more information on The AED Foundation Technical Assessment, click here.