Hireology's Robinson says most dealerships are marketing jobs the same way they used to market vehicles in the early days of the Internet — generically.
Dealers should be thoughtful in how they describe prospective positions and upfront about attributes they're seeking. Just as a vehicle description is designed with a certain customer in mind, a job description should be similarly targeted, Robinson said.
"We market these jobs as if all sales jobswere the same. It's not effective," he said.
A dealer looking to fill a job on the sales floor must first determine what he or she wants from an applicant.
If the store needs a recent college grad for an entry-level position, the ad copy should spotlight the potential career path that lies ahead, Robinson said.
Or if the dealership seeks an experienced sales rep, the advertisement should underscore better management practices, flexibility in working hours or even a choice between base pay and full commission.
Marketing employment opportunities is only one piece of the puzzle. Dana Hughes, director of Cox Automotive's dealer education programming, said dealerships should work on their culture first. That way, incoming applicants can see the benefits before they arrive.
"If you want to attract the best talent, you have to do business in the best way. And create an environment the minute they walk in," Hughes said.
Once a company's culture is worthy of attracting applicants, dealers should take advantage of the strength of their brand online.
Robinson said dealerships underuse their most effective virtual real estate — their websites.
When dealerships have dedicated career sites attached to their consumer- facing platform, their odds of attracting employees significantly increase.
"Your dealership's consumer brand and your dealership's employment brand are not separate. It's the same consumer, and the experience on the employment side is often related to whether or not they decide to do business with you," Robinson said.