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Details from DrivingSales’ Most Valuable Insight Competition

Hireology was fortunate to speak and present at the DrivingSales Presidents Club 2016 event as a finalist for the Most Valuable Insight Awards. As a way to present our “most valuable insight,” Hireology presented the findings from an in-house study on how effective employment branding drives quality hires and improved store performance at dealerships.

Our study found something to be true across all retail automotive dealerships: employment branding matters. We want to tailor our career sites or “employment brand” to best show the culture, history, community involvement and benefits of working with our organization. Top employees will seek out companies with strong employment brands. The best way to create a strong employment brand is through a career specific website designed specifically for applicants.

Here’s a concise look at the results of the study:

Be sure to visit our site for a full look at the study.

Our insight: Strong employment branding, when combined with a data-driven evaluation process, is one of the best investments a dealership can make. When dealerships build a strong employment brand and utilize process to manage the recruiting and hiring effort, the results are staggering.

What we found.  Our survey exposed numerous challenges facing the automotive industry when it comes to finding and hiring employees. There is a clear difference between utilizing job boards and a company career site when it comes to recruiting talent.

Applicant conversion by source.  We analyzed the rate at which inbound page traffic to this dealership group’s career page converted into candidate applications, and found that conversion rates from organic traffic delivered as a result of a branded career site substantially over-performed the conversion rates generated from paid job board traffic:

  • 2% conversion rate from job boards
  • 5% conversion rate from organic traffic

Organic traffic is defined by visitors who are coming to your site after finding you in a search engine like Google. They could be searching for your brand or openings at your company because of your established career site and content tailored to employees.

Candidates by source.  We define “candidate” as someone who has applied for an open position via the career site, and who has been deemed qualified first review such that a next step (like an interview) is warranted. Nearly 94% of candidates who applied for an open job were attributable to a paid job board, versus organic traffic attributable to a career site.

Hires by source.  While job boards control a majority of candidate traffic, our data showed 77% of all hires made resulted from organic traffic generated by the dealer’s career site, versus job boards.  Even though organic traffic attributable to a dealer career site generated just 6% of all candidate traffic, this cohort produced a whopping 77% of all hires made.

In other words, 6% of traffic generated 77% of hires.

Turnover Percentage by Source. Most importantly, the results show that turnover rates diverge substantially based on cohort. The new variable ops hires that originated from an candidate attributable to a branded career site turned over at a rate that’s two-thirds less than than the industry average.

  • 25% from Control Group A
  • 72% industry average

Key Takeaways.  So, what’s the value in having a branded career site for your dealership?

Here are four things to consider:

  1. Organic applicant traffic and process is over 5x more cost-effective
    1. Organic cost per-hire: $245
    2. Third party sources cost per-hire: $1,700
  2. Organic applicant traffic and process yields the majority of hires
    1. 20% of the traffic yields 80% of the hires
  3. Hires sourced this way are 2.5x more likely to be an A or B player
  4. Hires sources this way have higher retention rates
    1. 27% versus 67% industry average


What Dealers Must Do: Retail automotive dealers that want to build better teams and reduce turnover should invest in employment branding, and should integrate a data-driven hiring process.

The financial benefits of such an approach far surpass nearly all potential operational improvements through which dealers can generate a return on investment.

Assuming that a dealer has 55 employees (the average) and that their turnover is 67% per year, turnover is costing them nearly $600,000 per year, every year:

55 Employees

37 turns (67% x 55)

@ $16,000 cost-per-turnover ea.

 = $592,000

Now let’s assume that this dealership gets its act together, implements a branded career site and a structured hiring process, and produces a turnover rate similar to the cases studies discussed previously (25%). That same dealership turnover calculation now looks like the following:

55 Employees

 14 turns (25% x 55)

@ $16,000 cost-per-turnover ea.

 = $224,000

That’s a profit add-back of $368,000 per store per year.

The bottom line is that dealers must take charge of the hiring challenge by taking control of the hiring process. Strong employment branding, when combined with a data-driven evaluation process, is one of the best investments a dealership can make.

If you’re not already taking this approach, it might be time to reconsider the way your dealership hires employees, because your employment brand most definitely matters.



By: Kevin Baumgart, VP Business Development, Hireology

Michigan Auto Dealers Self Insured Fund (MADSIF) logo

MIOSHA Inspections Are On the Rise!

Since January 1, 2016 OSHA & MIOSHA have completed Safety Inspections in almost 130 dealerships nationwide. Michigan dealerships have accounted for nearly 25% or 30 inspections during 2016. Over $53,000 in fines were issued to those Michigan Dealerships.
In 2016, workers’ compensation claims in Michigan Dealerships have averaged $2500 per claim.

MIOSHA may show up at your door when you least expect it. Your dealership is subjected to numerous inspection/audits and the more prepared you are the less costly and time consuming these inspections/audits will be. Is your dealership prepared to welcome a MIOSHA inspector? If you’re not, or you’re not sure, please send your managers to this upcoming workshop. (Dates and registration information.)

The workshop will prepare your managers and dealership for a MIOSHA inspection by providing the following information:

  1. Who is MIOSHA (history and legality of their conduct)?
  2. Why was my dealership picked for an inspection?
  3. What will happen during a MIOSHA inspection, and what can you do during and prior to the inspection to be prepared?
  4. How providing a hazard free work place will reduce Workers Compensation costs and also comply with MIOSHA Regulations.
  5. Updated information on the requirements of the Right to Know Law and the Globally Harmonized System (GHS)

By attending this workshop your managers will know what to expect when MIOSHA arrives.

They will learn proper record keeping and how to correctly report injuries. The instructors will discuss what safety training is mandatory, and how it must be documented. They will learn how a walk-through inspection will be conducted including what MIOSHA will focus on. Finally, we will explain the potential cost of penalties, what appeal rights the dealership has, what is a Penalty Reduction Agreement (PRA) and whether you should accept it or not?

Workshop dates and registration information.


CAPTRUST Named #1 Advisory Firm in U.S.

MADA has worked with CAPTRUST Financial Advisors for more than 25 years.  It’s the 401k provider we choose for our own staff, and the company almost 100 other MADA dealers work with.

In its July 2016 issue, Financial Advisor magazine ranked CAPTRUST number one among registered investment advisors (RIAs) with assets in excess of $1 billion. The magazine’s annual survey analyzes several metrics, including assets under advisement, asset growth over the trailing year, assets per client, and a number of other indicators of business success.

Authors Evan Simonff and Eric Rasmussen cite recent challenges for the investment advisory industry, such as the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, lackluster and volatile capital markets, advisor succession, and the challenges of investing in the technology and infrastructure necessary to grow. In fact, of the 612 RIAs that participated in the survey, “more than one-third, 219, said they saw assets under management shrink last year,” according to the article.

Despite industry headwinds, CAPTRUST’s client assets and number of clients grew by 15.3% and 9.5%, respectively, during 2015. Last year was a record year for CAPTRUST on several fronts. Client assets under advisement grew from $147.7 billion to $169.1 billion.

Learn more about MADA’s endorsed 401k provider!  Call us at (800) 292-1923.

NADA Convention Registration & Housing is Open

The NADA Convention & Expo is the world’s largest international gathering of franchised new-vehicle dealers. It offers dealers the chance to meet face-to-face with major automakers, provides dozens of workshops with the industry’s best trainers, and features hundreds of exhibitors showcasing the latest equipment, services and technologies.

The 2017 NADA Convention & Expo will take place Thursday, Jan. 26, through Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017, in the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.  NADA recommends you book early to secure a room in your top choice.

Get more information online: http://convention.nada.org

Ignite the Night

The Northwood University Auto Show Gala is an annual tradition that has raised an amazing $360,000 in endowed scholarship funds!  The theme for the 2016 gala on September 30, 2016 is “Ignite the Night, ” and proceeds will again support students through much needed scholarships.

Last year Northwood and sponsors set a record year by raising more than $100,000 for endowed scholarships. Your sponsorship in 2016 can help the university provide additional scholarships to talented students who would not otherwise be able to attend Northwood University.

To learn more please visit www.northwood.edu/gala.

photo of a sailboat on a lake with calm water, blue skies and trees spanning the background.

9 Under-the-Radar Favorite Locales for a Mitten-cation

Summer’s just about here, which means you’re ready to plan a perfect summer stay-cation. So where should you go? While the obvious answers are places like Traverse City and Mackinac Island, there are many unique and beautiful destinations around the state without the crowds.

These nine lesser known lake towns have amazing views, attractions and culture:

  1. Pentwater: Pentwater’s white sand beaches, local farmers markets and small town charm all add to its appeal. Whether you’re a solo camper, a couple looking for a bed-and-breakfast or a family wanting to stay in a lakeside cottage, Pentwater is one of West Michigan’s best kept secrets.
  2. Cheboygan: In the northern part of the state Cheboygan’s sweeping beachfront, beautiful lighthouses and scenic landscape make it a favorite getaway during the summertime season. The quiet town offers charm, delicious restaurants and up-north favorites like ice cream and fudge shops.
  3. Saugatuck: Sailing and fishing charters are just one of the many attractions Saugatuck boasts. The city also has several great diners, dives and breweries, so bring your appetite.
  4. Ludington: Ludington has gained popularity in recent years for its active downtown scene and unique attractions. Visit the Country Dairy, local marina and wineries for a one-of-a-kind experience. And be sure to catch the S.S. Badger as it pulls into port transporting visitors from across Lake Michigan!
  5. Tawas: Tawas’ many parks and small town feeling along Lake Huron is everything we love about Michigan. The town is known for its quaint community that brings big charm. Be sure to check out the neighboring town of Oscoda for golf and other attractions as well.
  6. Gladwin: Quiet, picturesque and isolated, Gladwin is great for campers and those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Enjoy a walk through the mid-Michigan wilderness or a relaxing boat ride on local waterfronts.  
  7. Eagle Harbor: It can take a little bit of effort to get to this UP spot, which is one of Michigan’s earliest settled towns, but the views and the local experience are worth it. Enjoy kayaking, canoeing or fishing bayside, or venture into the wilderness for bird-watching or outdoor activities like camping and hiking.
  8. Caseville: Although Caseville is loved for its waterfront and cottages, the annual Cheeseburger Festival is what makes it a summer staple. This year’s fest takes place August 12th through the 21st.
  9. Escanaba: This town, in the southern part of the UP, was originally fueled by the lumber industry. It now serves as a treasured favorite for hunters and those looking for a dose of serenity.

Looking for more ways to enjoy Michigan during the summer? Read these blogs:

Photo credit: Ray Dumas


This article was originally published on www.ahealthiermichigan.org, a website sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.  Blue Cross and MADA are your trusted partners in building a healthier business and workforce.

MADPAC golf outing 25th anniversary logo

Celebrating 25 Years of MADPAC Golf

MADA invites you to join friends and colleagues throughout Michigan on June 6th for a day of golf at Eagle Eye Golf Course. This year we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the MADPAC Golf Outing!

Your registration fee includes greens fee for an 18 hole golf scramble with cart, buffet lunch, evening dinner reception, plus gifts, contests and raffle prizes.

Please register your foursome by May 16, 2016. A registration form is available here, or call MADA at (800) 292-1923. We look forward to seeing you on June 6th! More information about the event is available here.

photo of a single apple tree in a field

6 Michigan Native Trees You Can Plant on Earth Day

More than half of Michigan is covered in forests, which is one of the reasons why the state is so beautiful. Want to make it even more gorgeous? Plant some new trees! That simple act helps naturally clean carbon from the air while improving the Great Lakes State’s landscape. And there’s no better time than Earth Day, which is April 22, to do it.

If you’re at a loss for which variety is best, check out this list of some of our favorite native Michigan trees that are also super easy to plant and grow:

  1. Red Maple: These Michigan natives are easily adaptable, grow quickly and can now be found almost everywhere in the country. They do best with full sun exposure and turn a vibrant red color in the fall.
  2. Black Cherry: Black cherry trees are the largest of the wild cherry trees. Though the wood is prized to carpenters and woodworkers, the fruit is delicious as well. Just be careful: When the small cherries drop, they can stain concrete and driveways.
  3. Tulip Tree: Tulip trees are the ones with bright gold leaves you see every fall. They attract lots of birds including hummingbirds, cardinals and finches, and are highly resistant to pests such as insects and diseases. Tulip trees can grow up to 70 feet tall and are best suited for spots that get lots of sun.
  4. White Pine: These trees are long-needled, hearty pine trees with that can live up to 200 years (you probably already have some in your backyard). They are also the official state tree of Michigan.
  5. Apple Tree: A staple of the UP and northern Michigan, apple trees produce one of the most important—and delicious!—crops in the state. They are hearty enough to stand up to Michigan winters and can adapt to many different soil types.
  6. Arborvitae: Want a tree that will give your yard some privacy? This is the one. Arborvitaes can grow up to 10 feet tall and have a dense, green structure to them, making them perfect for giving you a barrier between you and your neighbor.

Will you be planting a tree on Earth Day? Tell us in the comments! If you’re a Michigan tree-hugger, you may also enjoy these blogs:

Photo credit: hjjanisch


This article was originally published on www.ahealthiermichigan.org, a website sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.  Blue Cross and MADA are your trusted partners in building a healthier business and workforce.

MADA membership benefits logo

Let MADA help with your installment seller license renewal!

The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) emailed installment seller license renewals to dealerships the first week of April. (Reminder: these documents were sent to the email address on file for the dealership.) Please print the renewal application and attachments provided by DIFS then complete and sign as required.

As a complimentary benefit of MADA membership, dealers are encouraged to send their completed renewal paperwork to MADA.  We will review your documents for accuracy and personally deliver all paperwork to the state.

Did you know? In previous years, the state had a long list of dealers whose renewal paperwork was incomplete or incorrect and the state was prepared to cancel the licenses. In most instances, the dealership was not aware there was a problem. Dealers who renew through MADA can help avoid this concern; we will contact you directly to correct errors before the renewal is delivered to the state and confirm the license has been renewed.

For more information please go here.

Automotive News Best Dealership to Work for 2016 graphic

Automotive News Best Dealerships To Work For

Automotive News has announced that registration for its 5th annual Automotive News Best Dealerships To Work For program is now open. This survey and recognition program is dedicated to finding and recognizing the best employers in the retail automobile industry. If you think your dealership has what it takes to be named to Automotive News’ fifth annual list of Best Dealerships To Work For list, or if you simply want to learn more about this project, please visit www.autonews.com/bestdealerships.