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Women in Automotive: How to Conduct Appropriate Interviews

By Beth Kempton

Women make up almost half of the U.S. workforce, but only 1 in 5 dealership employees are women. And with dealerships facing staffing shortages – only 1.25% of job seekers would consider working at a dealership – dealers need to make more of an effort to ensure their employment brand and hiring process are inclusive and open to women.

One way dealers can improve their hiring efforts to attract more women – and create a more diverse workforce overall – is by asking all job candidates the same fair, compliant questions. Not only can asking inappropriate interview questions drive away top talent – both men and women – but they can also be illegal. According to Project XX, a study released by Automotive News, women report being asked several inappropriate questions during automotive industry interviews, including the following:

  • Are you sure you’re not going to cry in the production line?
  • Who will watch your children? How old are they? What does your husband think of you working shift work?
  • What does your husband do and is he likely to relocate for a job?
  • Is your biological clock ticking?
  • Why, being a woman, would you want to be an engineer?

During a keynote panel at Women in Automotive June 24-26 in Orlando, Florida, several female leaders in the retail automotive industry will discuss how to avoid inappropriate interview questions, along with other key findings from Automotive News’ Project XX survey. The survey found that persistent sexism in the auto industry – an industry that says it wants to attract more female leaders – stalls careers and leaves women feeling unsafe.

Titled “How We Fit In and Where We Go From Here,” session participants include Julie Rodgers, Chief Operating Officer at Hireology, Kynzie Sims, Content Product Manager at Compli, Mary Beth Vander Schaff, Managing Editor of Automotive News, Jody Devere, CEO of AskPatty.com and Candice Crane, People Strategy. The panelists will discuss the implications of the Project XX survey results and how the automotive industry as a whole can better support and nurture female empowerment and leadership.

The keynote panel will take place on Sunday, June 24 at 5:45 p.m.. For more information on the Women in Automotive conference and to register for the event, visit: www.WomeninAutomotive.com. To see the full Project XX findings, visit: http://www.autonews.com/section/projectxx.

About the Author

Beth is the content strategist on Hireology’s marketing team, responsible for creating compelling blog posts, eBooks, marketing materials and other content. Her background includes five years of experience at a B2B digital marketing agency, where she crafted content for a variety of clients, including several in the HR technology space. Before beginning her career, Beth attended Loyola University Chicago, where she studied advertising and public relations.

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