3 Min Read • October 20, 2023
Dealerships Must Embrace Tech to Attract Millennial Workers
As staff turnover continues to plague dealerships, implementing modern technology could be the saving grace to attracting millennial talent. The industry needs to cater to this group. After all, millennials are the largest working generation. Millennials, broadly categorized as those born between 1980 and 1994, represent 35% of the total U.S. labor market.
If dealerships want to stay competitive and continue adding quality workers to their staff at a variety of levels, the millennial population can’t be ignored.
Millennials are digital first, growing up with the web at their fingertips and entering the workforce with smartphones in hand. For those used to the convenience of online shopping and next-day (or even same-day) delivery, the traditional car buying process is unappealing.
Add to that the stereotype of pushy sales staff, cut-throat competition for commissions and stacks of paperwork. While this stereotype is outdated, it’s important for dealerships to address these concerns to attract reliable, new employees.
Tech, Not Stress
Selling cars in a traditional dealership is often very stressful, for customers and employees. This sales model doesn’t appeal to millennials who place a lot of value in a seamless buying experience. They’re used to the ease and simplicity of buying on Amazon. They want the car buying process to be Amazon-like, but they also want to sell that way from an employee perspective.
Modern retail technology can be the saving grace for dealerships seeking to attract and retain millennial workers. Technology, such as tablets and kiosks, streamline the experience for everyone involved.
The Express Storefront
Keeping what millennials want in mind, many dealerships have decided to go a step further by enhancing standard dealership processes with an online Express Storefront, like the one offered by CDK Global.
The promise of an Express Store is simple: Customers go online and select an available vehicle or customize a dream car. They can secure financing, receive a value for a trade-in vehicle, calculate monthly payments, and educate themselves on finance and insurance products.
The transparency and convenience shorten the buying process in-store and eliminate the price haggling that so many customers and employees dread.
Consultant, Not Salesperson
Leveraging technology to transform the buying experience also transforms the role of salespeople. When all the details of a purchase are transparent, salespeople fill the role of trusted consultants and can leave the hard bargaining behind.
A customer in-store who has already done hours of research online doesn’t need to be sold. Instead, customer and consultant can work together on one tablet using the same Express Storefront the customer used at home to calculate payments, work a first pencil, and choose finance and insurance products. Built-in guardrails ensure payments meet dealership parameters and don’t erode gross.
Freedom from the burden of high-pressure sales appeals to millennials who are suspicious of pushy salespeople and lengthy transactions. This instantaneous generation weaned on the Internet and the convenience economy can be drawn to dealership jobs when technology is leveraged to ease transactions and blunt hard sales tactics.