When Capitol Auto Group moved its dealerships in 2012, new stores meant a new focus: employee engagement.
Employees became No. 1 and customers, No. 2.
"How we engage with the employees every day, every week and every month, that's what really changed our business model," said Scott Casebeer, owner of Capitol Auto Group, which has three rooftops in Salem, Ore., and a used-vehicle store in Dallas, Ore. All three of the franchised new-vehicle stores made this year's list of the Best Dealerships To Work For.
Most workplaces strive for employee engagement, but only a select group gets it right, experts say. Prioritizing engagement the right way could improve employees' performance and boost dealerships' bottom line, they add.
In the engagement section of the Best Companies Group employee survey, an average of 98 percent of the employees from the 100 Best Dealerships To Work For answered positively, said Peter Burke, president of Best Companies Group.
Of the approximately 60 industry-based programs Best Companies Group manages around the globe, the employee engagement levels are the highest in the U.S. auto dealership program, he said.
Dealerships on the list offer more or better perks than other industries. These include new-hire referral bonuses, retirement plan matches, paying at least half of dependents' health care, health care availability by the 60th day of work, more domestic partner benefits, paid time off to volunteer, telecommuting policies and flexible work hours, said Burke.