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New tool aims to increase dealers' recruitment efficiency

The apparent widespread lack of attention given to effective recruitment by dealers has led to a push on a new online assessment tool designed to help businesses find - and ultimately retain - the best people as well as reduce costs in ineffective management.

With staff turnover rates cited as being as high as 30 per cent, the Institute of the Motor Industry, is backing a joint initiative to tackle poor recruitment practises in the sector.

Called AMA Trait, in line with the IMI’s automotive management accreditation (AMA) competency framework, the psychometric profiling tool has been developed in collaboration with Motor Industry Consultants responsible for managing the initiative, as well as specialist academics from Aston Business Assessments, a spin off company from Aston University.

Part funded by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, the new tool has been trialled by more than 50 motor retailers involving 300 individual.

It is designed to evaluate personality traits and potential competencies of those in managerial roles.

It also helps identify the most suitable individuals prior to interview, thus minimising the risks of choosing the wrong candidate from the outset.

Steve Scofield, head of the accreditation academy at the IMI, said: “In a highly challenging economy, the traditional methods of recruitment have proven to be ineffective and costly to the sector, demanding a fresh approach.

"AMA-Trait offers a structured and cost-effective programme enabling businesses to significantly enhance their selection process and provides a quick and effective way to help identify the right manager for your business, saving time and cost.

"Industry research suggests that employee turnover rates in the sector are as high as 30% per year, often made worse because the recruitment process is left to the last minute. As well as providing valuable information to select the right person for the role, AMA Trait provides guidance on conducting the interview itself, including the best questions to ask."

Sample data:

A survey* of more than 200 dealers found that 75% did not know how much they spent on recruitment. The study found that fees were often absorbed into operational expenses and time allocated to finding new staff was rarely measured.  The system has the potential to help businesses measure their recruitment costs.

As part of the IMI’s plan to improve development opportunities within the sector, AMA-Trait also evaluates progression suitability.

To ascertain management potential, the tool assesses individuals against 12 of the critical competencies of the IMI’s AMA competency framework. The resulting information provides candidates with a detailed profile of their potential strengths and weaknesses, highlighting any areas for further development.

For further information about AMA-Trait, visit

* Research conducted by Job Co-op Automotive 2012

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