Automotive News celebrated the Best Dealerships to Work For 2018 at a gala dinner and awards show on Thursday, October 11. The annual awards program recognizes the best dealerships across the country that have established excellence in areas including leadership, corporate culture, role satisfaction, training, pay and benefits and overall engagement.
What makes the Best Dealerships to Work For 2018 winners stand out? We’ve pulled together some similarities between the winners below.
Top Dealerships Treat Job Applicants Like Customers
The U.S. unemployment rate recently hit a near 50-year low, at 3.7%, making it more difficult than ever for auto dealerships and other employers across industries to attract top talent. Dealers on the Best Dealerships to Work For list understand the importance of building their best teams and turning their people into a key source of competitive advantage.
In today’s applicant-driven economy, the most successful dealerships recognize the need to sell job seekers on the opportunity working for their teams present – and answer the “What’s in it for me?” question. This means maintaining a strong employment brand that outlines employee benefits, training opportunities, career paths and employee success stories. Dealership that don’t have a compelling employment brand story to tell will are more likely to lose top talent to the competition.
In addition to selling applicants on their open roles, the best dealerships to work for understand the importance of treating recruitment similar to consumer marketing. Recent Hireology data found that the average dealer waits 10 days to review and respond to applicants. Dealers on the Automotive News list are more likely to respond to top candidates quickly, before losing candidates to other opportunities – similar to taking quick action on customer leads. Top employers, like the dealers on this list, are also more likely to keep candidates engaged throughout the hiring process, so they stay excited to join and contribute to the team.
They Value Engagement from Dealership Employees
According to Automotive News, “In this, the seventh year of honoring the 100 Best Dealerships To Work For, the competition to make the rankings is tougher than ever. The percentage of employees giving positive responses to survey questions has gotten much higher for the winning dealerships since the program began in 2012.”
Employee engagement scoring, a survey of how dealership employees employees feel about working at their auto dealership, makes up 75% of the score to determine the rankings. This means top dealerships that stand out and make the Best Dealerships to Work For list value employee engagement. Even if one or two employees respond negatively to the survey, this can throw off the entire ranking.
To keep employees engaged post-hire, top dealerships offer competitive pay and benefits, a strong corporate culture, ongoing employee communication, a variety of training and development resources, and more.
Given today’s record-low unemployment rate and fewer than 1% of job seekers interested in dealership careers, your dealership should strive to prioritize your people strategy and continuously keep employees engaged, similar to the honorees at this year’s Automotive News Best Dealerships to Work For. In doing so, you can attract quality candidates and keep current employees excited to work every day, ultimately increasing productivity and profitability.
By improving your people operations, one day your auto dealership might end up on the list, and this best dealerships to work for accolade can be used as a great recruitment tool to attract top talent. If you’re interested in more information about attracting top talent at your dealership, read our resource, “Planning for People in Retail Automotive.”