Named Headlight and Autocity, both initiatives stem from a need to challenge the misconceptions of the industry and to demonstrate that motor retail is a professional and attractive career path.
Headlight is a national schools competition for pupils aged 14 to 16. It encourages schools to link with their local automotive firms, and introduces them to the breadth of roles available in the industry.
Dealers and repairers need to sign up to it by September by contacting the IMI.
“It is a unique twinning opportunity for schools and local businesses,” said Lesley Woolley, the IMI’s head of professional development.
The aim is to improve the industry’s profile, and change the poor perceptions held by pupils, teachers and parents.
“For Headlight to be successful, it needs the industry’s backing. It will fall down if it doesn’t get the twinning with schools,” said Woolley.
Autocity is a website designed to clearly show the variety of job roles available in motor retail and repair, from valeters and receptionists to HR managers and dealer principals.
It has more than 150 video interviews with personnel currently working at franchised car, motor-cycle and truck dealerships, independent repairers, bodyshops, fast-fits, motor factors and vehicle leasing companies.
Each video outlines the main elements of that role and career prospects, and is accompanied by information signposting the qualifications relevant to the job and potential employers.
“It will help redefine the career in automotive industry as a positive choice,” said Woolley.