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NFDA HR survey shows positive trends for dealer recruitment

NFDA chief executive, Sue Robinson

The percentage of dealers looking to recruit across all business areas is up from Q2 this year, according to the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) latest HR survey.

The survey revealed that 77.5% are seeking to recruit sales executives over the next three months and the same percentage intend to employ technicians. Additionally, 67.5% intend to hire service advisors.

All dealers who engaged with the survey perform employee engagement activities, with 75% of respondents undertaking them annually or more frequently.

Most dealers (72.7%) undertake performance development reviews at least once a year, according to the research.

The research found that 75% of dealers plan to use the funds from the apprenticeship levy in the next 12 months. 67.5% are looking to recruit apprentice technicians, compared to 36.9% in Q2 this year, 35.0% sales apprentices (vs 9.2% in Q2 2021) and 22.5% body shop apprentices, compared to 7.7% earlier this year.

Sue Robinson, NFDA chief executive, said: “The latest findings of our HR survey revealed a number of positive trends within the employment sector, with dealers intending to hire across all business areas.

“The challenges faced by businesses over the past months indicated the need for employers to communicate more frequently with staff and it is encouraging to see most dealers undertake employee engagement activities and performance reviews on a regular basis.

“Dealers are increasingly looking to recruit a diverse skillset to respond to the trends facing our sector, from electrification, to the growing involvement of technology.”

The NFDA said its employment initiative, Drive My Career, continues to support members by raising awareness of the career opportunities available in automotive, promoting the positive aspects of a career in the sector and sending young people to dealers’ career pages.

Sytner parts advisor Samantha Anscombe became the first ambassador for the NFDA's campaign.

Robinson added: “Attracting and retaining talented people is key to the success of our industry and we will continue to work closely with our members to assist them with their recruitment efforts.”

The NFDA said it runs a HR working group that meets every quarter to discuss employment issues facing dealers.

The responses of the survey covered 1,115 dealerships and a total of 41,448 employees.

See the full results of the NFDA's HR survey.

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