How to Hire Automotive Talent Faster with Texting

Hiring talent in the retail automotive industry is hard.

Crucial roles, like service technicians and other revenue generating positions, are going unfilled. Your hiring team is doing all that they can, but candidates are dropping out of the hiring process left and right. All of this is ultimately hurting your dealership’s bottom line. 

It’s time to give your dealership’s hiring and recruitment processes an upgrade — especially if you’re only using emails and phone calls to communicate with your candidates. 

But you can change that with text messaging! Consider text messaging the next trim level for your dealership’s hiring process — it’s about as luxe as hiring can get. 

If you’re using an outdated hiring process, the snail pace is likely leading you to lose out on top automotive talent. Read on to learn more about why you should text candidates and where you can implement this powerful communication method in your process today.

Why should dealerships use texting in their hiring processes?

Your ideal workers aren’t chained to a computer all day — but they probably have their cell phone in their pocket at any given time. Instead of hoping that your top candidates will sift through their overstuffed inbox and find your email amongst countless promotions, communicate with them in a way that they’ll find faster.

Let’s have the numbers speak for themselves here: nearly half of automotive job seekers indicated that they check their text messages more than their emails in our 2023 State of Automotive Hiring Report. Combine that with the fact that 49% of those respondents also used their smartphone during their last job search, and you have a pretty impactful case for utilizing text messages to hire technician talent faster.

Places where dealers could leverage texting capabilities

As with any great tool, there are optimal places in the hiring process where you could text with applicants for the best results. Here are three steps in the hiring process that can deliver the most impact from this communication method. 

Encourage applications via text messages

You could empower applications from folks who see physical assets like flyers, business cards, or even strategically placed posters if your applicant tracking system has text-to-apply functionality. Text-to-apply, if you’re unfamiliar with the term, allows viewers to scan a QR code on a physical asset, send a text, and communicate with a chatbot via text to create their application — all within 60 seconds!

This is a great tool for recruitment, as you’ll be able to digitally track the effectiveness of your different materials so you can improve ROI over time. If your dealership regularly attends job fairs, speaks at vocational schools, or otherwise has partnerships in place to display your physical assets, you’ll be able to determine which recruitment channels provide the most value for your business and adjust your recruitment strategy accordingly.

Tip: 80% of automotive job seekers would be open to applying for jobs via text!

Enroll employees in automated referral campaigns

Consider this strategy one that you can essentially set and forget about: automatic enrollment of your new and current employees into your employee referral program. Your dealership should already be embracing recruitment automation, so this is a natural continuation of the trend. With this tactic, you can easily access new networks of talented friends, family, and former colleagues of your newest employees.

With automated referral campaigns, new hires are entered into your existing employee referral campaign after two weeks on the job. They’ll be sent a text message asking for any recommendations they have for your open positions along with a link they can click to chat with a chatbot to submit names and contact information. These automated campaigns make it easy for your dealership to tap into new talent pools while keeping your newest hires engaged (and more likely to stay!) with you.

Speed up candidate communications

Perhaps most obviously, texting with candidates simply speeds up the hiring process. Your hiring team can ditch phone tag and get right to the point, all without wasting time waiting on dial tones.  Texting with candidates keeps them engaged throughout your hiring process — and less likely to drop out.

With texting, you’ll be able to move through the entire hiring process much faster than with traditional communication methods, which is great news for employers and job seekers alike. The best part? Our recent survey found that 89% of automotive job seekers would be willing to text with recruiters via texts so the odds are high that your top picks will be onboard with this candidate communication method.


Hiring automotive talent has become harder and harder as the national technician shortage wears on. In order to keep your dealership’s service bay stocked with top talent, you need to move quickly through the hiring process — and that means you need a faster way to communicate with applicants. With texting, you can speed up the hiring process, tap into new networks of talent, and even receive applications.

To see how Hireology’s intuitive platform can help you hire automotive talent faster with texting while keeping you compliant with state and federal regulations, book a 1:1 demo today!



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