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There's a stigma that comes with working in the automotive industry. It has had an effect over the years on a dealership's ability to retain high quality people, particularly on the sales floor. How can we solve this?
Before we can answer that question, it's important to understand why the problem exists in the first place. Wages can be an issue, but as Jim Ziegler mentions in the video below, it's not necessarily the biggest concern. Hours and pressure from a salesperson's spouse has had an influence and could be the biggest reason that dealers lose their best people. Many salespeople work crazy hours and that has an impact.
Another issue comes back to the stigma itself. Because of flaws in the past within the industry, being in the car business has brought about poor perceptions from the outside world.
As David Kain points out, it comes down to making it a career. "The turnover is ridiculous and dealers have to solve the riddle of keeping employees and paying them appropriately, and making it to where being at one store for thirty years, making a career out of it is valuable to them."
To Brian Pasch, the way to keep great employees is about tools and training. If you give them the tools to connect with a digital customer and the training to take advantage of the culture of the next generation, you empower them to be truly successful for the dealership as well as in their own lives.
"The faster the throughput is through the dealership, the more efficient everything gets, the lower the cost, the more cars get sold, the more busy these sales professionals are," said ADM's Ralph Paglia. "I believe that in the stores where you see that happening, you also see the turnover dropping."
One of the things that was often discussed throughout the video is training, but Cory Mosley brought up a great point about establishing the right expectations up front when hiring people and giving them an idea of what's going to happen from the start.
"We bring people in on a 30-day, 60-day, 90-day probation period. We don't bring them in on a three-month engagement strategy," said Mosley. "That creates the abandonment. That creates the issues."
Here is the video from the Year of the Dealer Round Table sponsored by LotLinx. It's totally worth a watch, even if only to hear what Ziegler says about millennials.