If you’re watching the news, any news, over the past year and a half, since the COVID-19 restrictions were loosened across the country, it is blatantly obvious that retaining staff has been an issue. Across all industries, hiring and maintaining capable staff members has been practically impossible.
The automotive industry is no exception. Given the limitations set by government shut-downs and further complications from industry supply, car dealerships are still struggling to find replacements for their former employees or new employees that are ready and willing to come to work.
See what happened is the government, both local and federal, made it really easy to refuse to go back to work. With the supplemental income provided with unemployment compensation, many people were making more money to be at home than they were from actually being on the floor selling cars. Commission based businesses are still struggling. Not to mention it’s an outdated structure for compensation at most dealerships.
This is where hiring practices come in. With stricter standards and a more rigorous interview processes, you’re sorting out the best of the best when outfitting your store. You want people who are proud to work for you and were happy to come back when business restrictions subsided. However, this isn’t where the attention to your staff needs to stop.
Not only are you looking for people to staff your store that have a solid work ethic, drive, ambition, and charm, but you also want people who will be moldable to the culture of that store. Too often we encounter potential employees who glad hand their way into positions and six weeks to three months down the line, we’re looking for their replacement.
The car business isn’t a difficult one in which to get your feet wet, but it is nearly impossible to find the right hire 100% of the time. However, with the right training that “impossible” moves to probable. Your sales, BDC, and your service teams need to rise to the reputation the dealership has established and the way to make that happen is with proper formalized ongoing coaching and training.
Customer service is how you’re going to win customers over the same brand dealership ten miles down the road. If you demonstrate to your customers that they are of the utmost importance, you will be able to ensure a customer for life. How do you do that?
A lot of your business is going to be conducted over the phone, especially today. Most people are still of the mindset of only leaving their homes for the very necessary items and it is up to you to make sure the car on your lot is part of that need. In this instance, your basic training and sloppy phone skills aren’t going to cut it.
Today the need has arisen for advanced and ongoing phone coaching and training. Not only to help to make your sales, service, and parts teams more comfortable talking to customers, but also to help to ensure they are in control of the call. No more are your sales people simply providing inventory information and hanging up the phone. Ongoing and active telephone coaching offers incredible results which will improve appointment set rates by double or triple when used properly and consistently.
Don’t delay! Your staff needs this and your customers want this!