EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second of six stories that take a look at what makes a dealership one of Automotive News Canada’s 25 Best Dealerships to Work For. You can read previous stories here.
Automotive News Canada’s 2021 Best Dealerships To Work For were more likely than others to offer variable hours and telecommuting options for employees, survey data shows.
And at least one even began offering unlimited sick days.
According to data gathered by the Best Companies Group, 44 per cent of the Best Dealerships said they offer telecommuting for employees, compared with nine per cent for all other dealerships.
- Click here to see profiles of all 25 Best Dealerships To Work For.
Given the nature of many dealership jobs, including in sales and the service department, few employees actually work remotely. On average, about four per cent of permanent full- and part-time workers at the Best Dealerships were still telecommuting, down from seven per cent when COVID-19 began spreading, and one per cent before the pandemic.
Still, having the ability to work from home if possible, as well as being able to work more flexible hours, has proved to be an important benefit for dealership employees during the pandemic, said Daniel Bloom, vice-president of market research at the Best Companies Group, which managed the Best Dealerships To Work For survey.
“The standard of allowing telecommuting and having flexible hours were big differentiators,” Bloom said. “The fact that you offer flexible hours and the fact that you offer telecommuting even though not a lot of people take advantage of it is another aspect of caring and having concern for your employees.”
Jean-Nicolas Desjeunes, a spokesman for the Quebec-based HGrégoire dealership group, said employees who are able to work remotely are given the opportunity to do so. And the company, which runs 32 newand used vehicle dealerships in Canada and the United States, also offers the flexibility when possible. The group’s marketing, media, data science and engineering departments work from home, Desjeunes said. “Ensuring a good worklife balance is paramount,” he said.