Each year, the turnover rate for dealerships continues to increase. In 2013, the average dealership saw a 66 percent turnover rate among sales consultants, well above the national average for the private sector of 42 percent. As of 2015, that number has risen to 71 percent. Regardless of the cause, high turnover rates are both disruptive and costly for dealerships. From lost productivity to wasted training costs, it’s crucial for dealerships to hire credible candidates.

Many times, dealerships are quick to look to external candidates to fill the void of a lost employee or a new role. The search can be lengthy and tiring — not to mention risky.

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Strength from Within

Hiring internally to combat turnover rates is much more effective and safer for a dealership that’s looking to efficiently fill positions. First of all, you’re pulling from an existing pool of well-trained staff members who are already familiar with the culture, values and work ethic of your company. Right away, this can help save you time and money.Typically, there’s also a solid level of trust already present with current employees. Upper management is aware of how much the candidate can handle and, presumably, an internal hire knows how to make decisions consistent with the business’s standards. Still, it’s important to choose wisely when looking at in-house candidates. A staff member who’s excellent at one position may not be fit for another, which is why you still need a strong hiring process in place.Developing Qualified Internal Candidates

A successful dealership program for hiring internal candidates almost requires a shift in the way you build your business. While you need well-trained employees for specific roles, it’s important to also consider how they could eventually be the best candidates for in-house hires. These types of workers should be flexible, knowledgeable and adaptable to different situations. Meanwhile, educate your employees on how to communicate with a diverse group of people with a variety of personalities and work ethics. As always, success begins with motivation and positive reinforcement coming from the top of your dealership’s hierarchy.

The Right Tools to Grow Internal Candidates

For the most part, internal hires are generally much lower-risk candidates. This is due in large part to the fact they have built-in on-the-job experience at your dealership and have a strong grasp of your organization’s culture. Still, it’s important to map out each role for your employees before you begin the hiring process. By doing so, you give your employees a realistic idea of their future with your company and provide motivation to work towards a positive outcome.

How a Structured Hiring Process Can Help

Let’s say your dealership recently lost a salesperson to turnover. At this point, you have an excess staff working in the service department, so you decide to look internally for an employee.

By incorporating hiring software into your interview process, you can log into your system to review how employees interviewed in the past. You make note of the benefits each of them offer, their hard and soft skills, and narrow down which would be capable of transferring to your sales team.

You select three potential candidates as most fit for the position. Then, without having to spend time and money on advertising externally on job boards and social media, you simply meet with each candidate separately to discuss the benefits of switching to the sales position.

After meeting and deliberating, you’ve chosen your employee and move them into the salesperson role. Without having to put a new hire through the full rigors of training or gaining their trust and acclimating them to your dealership’s culture, you’ve found your dealership a familiar and suitable contestant for the job.

By using automated hiring software, your company is able to analytically sort through the most qualified candidates before hiring. You are easily aware of which applicants need your review, how many open positions you currently have, interviews that have been recently scored, hires you’ve made and any new hire onboarding steps that need to be completed.

When it comes to promoting internally, hiring software can archive all the information from the hiring process and allow you to sort through to determine which candidates are most credentialed for a recently open position. Then, you can speak with the most prominent contenders to further analyze who’ll be the best fit.

Use a Career Site to Make Life Easier

A dealership career site allows dealerships to create a clean employment Website that enables top candidates to quickly research job openings while also getting more familiar with your business and team.

With access to a simple, user-friendly career site, applicants have the chance to take their professional development into their own hands and research new opportunities for internal hires. You’re also able to highlight your key employee benefits, which can motivate your internal candidates in case it’s been a while since they learned about them. You can also describe your career path for job seekers, making your dealership stand out as a company with a clear plan for employee advancement.

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