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Dealer Principal

  • Job added:   8 January 2014
  • Location :   Guildford
  • Job Type :   Permanent
  • Company :   Sandown Mercedes Benz
  • Contact :   Jo Michael
  • Email :

Sandown is a privately owned Mercedes-Benz group operating across six sites. The group is responsible for two of Mercedes-Benz UK’s market areas and employs approximately 350 people. Sandown is focused on being innovative and dynamic and is committed to delivering an exceptional experience to its Mercedes Benz customers.

An opportunity has arisen to join Sandown Mercedes-Benz in this challenging new role. Reporting directly to the Group Managing Director, the main responsibility of this role will be to ensure the efficient running of the site. You will be involved with planning, and motivating and co-ordinating the site’s management through leadership. Your responsibility will include the management of all department managers, including sales, service and parts.
You will deliver the Sandown experience and maximise sales and profit opportunities through the overall management of the site whilst exceeding customer expectations at all times and ensuring that all standards and processes are adhered to in line with franchise contract arrangements.


  • Ensure that the site achieves profit margins within its objectives/annual budget.
  • To continually monitor the financial situation, examining all accounts, daily and weekly operating controls and dealer composite figures and franchise/industry KPI’s, taking corrective measures and actions as deemed necessary.
  • Take steps to increase market penetration, in order to achieve budget.
  • Regular liaison with Manufacturer to discuss franchise performance and objectives.
  • Take actions to sustain and enhance levels of customer satisfaction, service and retention through processes, facility enhancements and training/development of staff.
  • Focusing on customer complaints that department managers are unable to rectify and taking the necessary action to resolve these complaints by responding promptly to complaints and ensure timely and correct resolution.
  • Maintain effective control of expenses in line with budget objectives.
  • Carry out monthly minuted management meetings including review and actions from the management accounts.
  • Ensure cost effective stock turn ratios.
  • Review monthly aged debt reports to ensure Company policy on collection and provision for aged debt is applied.
  • Establish and agree site managerial and departmental staff requirements.
  • Ensure training needs are met efficiently and are in line with operational and block exemption requirements.
  • Lead and motivate a senior management team, taking steps to create a professional and customer focussed environment.
  • Completing evaluation performance reviews and developing short and long term goals with each department manager
  • Ensure Company HR policies are followed correctly.
  • Ensure marketing campaigns, advertising and promotional activities are implemented.
  • Initiate research into customer satisfaction and requirement for improvement.
  • Ensure that the site complies with relevant legislation on consumer law, trade descriptions, FSA Regulations for insurance etc.
  • Ensure that steps are taken to ensure safe working processes are followed and provision of H&S legislation are complied with

Key Skills/Attributes Required.

People management, specifically in terms of achieving high performance through teams. Leadership style should be highly visible and hands on.

Motor industry experience, along with experience in a senior position with established track record in profit delivery, cost control, stock and people management.

Experience of Sales and After Sales functions.

Enthusiasm to deliver the Mercedes-Benz experience and continuously improve product knowledge of yourself and others. Desire to achieve the highest standard of personalised customer care commensurate with the Mercedes-Benz brand.

Flexible approach to work and adaptable to thrive in a changing environment.

High level of IT competence.

The successful candidate will have significant relevant retail motor experience and be able to demonstrate a track record of success in a challenging and fast paced automotive environment . Candidates will need to have outstanding drive, ambition, enthusiasm and excellent communication skills and be immaculately attired. Applicants will preferably be educated to degree level or equivalent or hold a Management / Leaders in Business Qualification with a main manufacturer. A full Driving Licence is essential as travel between sites will be required.

For more details please contact Jo Michael.