Training and development of staff should be one of the highest priorities for any car dealership. If you can create an environment that affords employees the opportunity to progress, then people who may not have considered an automotive career may well be interested. This was the main driving force behind Jardine Motors Group’s decision to launch the Jardine Academy, offering young people the chance to quickly develop the skills needed to have a long, successful career in the automotive industry.
Since its launch two years ago, the Academy has received over 11,000 applications, resulting in 10 groups of students that all have gone on to enhance the sales teams operating across the eight brands working with Jardine Motors Group.
One stand out achievement has been the number of women who have come through the Academy. Of the ten groups of students who have graduated, there has been a 55:45 male to female gender split. One such graduate, Emma Bloomfield, a Sales Executive at BMW Bury St Edmunds, has been excelling since she embarked on her career in October 2018.
She said: “I was looking for a job following redundancy and came across the Jardine Academy. The way the course was structured really appealed to me and gave me a fast-track into a career where I can progress and develop my skills.
“The course specifically helped me learn the skills needed to deal with members of the public and provide a high level of customer service. The Academy assisted me so much that I have even had customers bring in a bottle of champagne to thank me for my work, and many have made positive comments to my manager.”
One key aspect of the Academy is making sure people have the space to learn the trade before they go out onto the shop floor and do it for real.
This was the experience of Robert Johnston, a Senior Sales Executive at Volkswagen Harlow. He commented: “The training gave me the confidence and the tools to be able to start the job on my own two feet as an established sales person within the team that had years of experience behind them. I did not feel out of place, just prepared.
“Everything that is within the programme is completely relevant to what you’ll be doing, from negotiation skills to learning about the vehicles we sell. All of it is instantly transferable into your day-to-day role and in fact, it puts you ahead of even some experienced sales people who were not lucky enough to have the professional training the programme provides.”
The Jardine Academy is set to continue to help drive new talent in the sector, with applications coming in from across the country.For more information about Jardine Motors Group, please visit: www.jardinemotors.co.uk