Month: September 2011

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Looking for a job?

What really rattles you about looking for a job?

Back some years ago I fell victim to one of the Motor Industry’s re-organisations and found myself in the job market for the first time in my career.

In those days the only source of vacancy advertisements were newspapers, so diligently I scoured the job vacancies for something that would fit the bill, prepared my CV and I always composed a letter relevant to the position advertised, then I waited, and waited, and waited, and waited! So I called, and called, and called! The silence was deafening, and depressing, and de-motivating, and unnecessary, its cause was unprofessional and uncaring, to the point of being deliberately cruel. Someone, somewhere dealing with the position was so important and their ego so inflated, that common courtesy was beneath them, in truth they were so incompetent at their job they were a liability not an asset to their employer!

I believe that an applicant’s quality is illustrated in the way they conduct themselves in making their application, and conversely a good quality employer will demonstrate its value as an employer by reciprocating, dealing with all applicants, even the unsuccessful ones, in a professional, timely and sensitive way. I hope that our dealings with candidates, is driven by my memories, my treatment was a disgrace and I would consider myself to have failed sadly if we were guilty of this type of behaviour.

Let me have your thoughts and experiences.

John Gibson
Managing Director
[email protected]

Up, Up and Away?

It’s fair to say it is a very difficult market, in fact the toughest we've know in the 30+ years of working in the motor industry. We had a recession which is officially over but the last few months has seen another 'dip' in business and particularity in the retail market levels of business have dropped noticeably. This of course has a knock on effect in the motor trade jobs market, more redundancies, less staff being recruited, etc. etc.etc.

But is it all bad news? Well there are some good signs out there if you look.
The SMMT have confirmed that new car registrations rose in August for the first time in over a year (up 7.3%). Admittedly that's against the usual low August figure so the rise was only to 59,346 units (55,305 last Aug) but it’s a rise where for a long time we have only seen a drop.

LCV's & HGV's are up again by 22.8% in August (22% YTD), Big Bus sales up by 115% and Coaches up by 25%. Used 4X4 prices have taken a leap in advance of winter and small economical used cars are rising in value a little faster than other used sectors which are also up.

The markets were all the first ones to be hit badly in the recession, these are all recovering slowly as vehicles have to be changed and credit is coming back to the market. The new car market was bolstered up by the scrappage scheme last year but with that gone the market reduced and is only now showing signs of recovery.

The media is playing its part in keeping our spirits low and talking us into another recession, we've noticed that every time the FTSE 100 drops it’s all over the news but every time it recovers there is no mention. It is no doubt going to be a tough road to recovery but things are better than they were and in many of the JGA regions we had our 2nd best month in the last two years this August so things are not always as bad as they seem, WE are placing people and OUR clients are recruiting.

As we move toward the end of the third quarter,

The Automotive recruitment market is challenging at the moment due to the high level of labour available which is combined with relatively low level of calibre. Many candidates in the motor trade jobs market appear to either not be suitable for the job they are doing and have been managed out of the business or are having relationship issues with their current employer. This could be as a result of poor management, support or increased pressure to perform and they are unable to deliver.

Our experience is that clients are becoming significantly more demanding with regard to calibre and are employing a forensic attention to detail which ultimately finds that a candidate may not be suitable for the motor trade vacancies posted.

It appears as though many businesses have tried to resolve their headcount requirements themselves and have had mixed results when advertising jobs in the motor trade.

Based on current levels of dialogue with senior management and the fact we are being approached to tender suggests that there is an increased appetite for our engagement in senior appointments. Managers in businesses are too busy to screen and interview high volumes of candidates as there focus needs to be on close business management.

As we move toward the end of the third quarter, we sense an increasing concern as to whether businesses have the key people needed to pull the businesses through the difficult trading conditions. Our prediction is that once September is behind us we will find ourselves busy in assisting businesses reform there teams before the start of 2012. Good candidates will be in demand. This positions JGA well, because we are trusted by our strongest candidates and will be able to respond quickly for senior appointment motor trade recuitment needs.

The skill pool will improve toward the end of the year, but candidates will be cautious if they are still employed and looking for a new opportunity. Good operators desire a high level of confidentiality and we are certainly able to assist in that area.

Motor Industry training needs to be reviewed…

The Institute of the Motor Industry, (IMI), is carrying out a review of training needs for the motor sector. “In order to ensure we continue to develop appropriate skills solutions, we are now conducting an in-depth research project investigating the training and skills requirements of the sector's workforce,” it said.
“As a key stakeholder within the sector, we would really value your experience and views on the subject and would therefore like to invite you to participate in our online survey”, it added.
Responses are strictly confidential and will be analysed, along with information collected via telephone interviews, expert working groups and wider consultation, to provide an industry consensus of the sector skills needs and requirements.
The survey should take no more than 20 minutes to complete and closes on 30 September 2011 and each response will earn 50 skillmiles.
To take part visit

Annual growth at an extremely healthy 14% per annum

If you are looking to establish a new career or set up a successful business franchise then look no further – John Gibson Associates was founded in 1987, and since that time has become the largest specialist Automotive Recruitment Consultancy in the UK. Despite the downturn in the UK's economic activities has grown substantially year on year. Indeed in 2007 the existing Franchisees of JGA shared a fee income of almost £1.5 million and annual growth still continues at an extremely healthy 14% per annum.
The business really started to take off when the Directors of the company decided to nationally franchise the concept in 2000 by specifically allocating geographical areas based upon Postcode, with each area having a similar number of potential clients.
Since then the business has established an enviable reputation which involves the sourcing of first class quality candidates for companies within the Automotive Industry, including Manufacturers, Dealer Groups, individual Dealerships, Component Companies, Insurance and Accident Repair Companies. If it is Automotive related then John Gibson Associates specialise in the solving of any recruitment opportunity.
The company now has over ten franchisees located throughout the UK, some operating within two geographical areas, whilst others operating within one geographical area. All in all each franchise benefits from the use of a substantial database which contains over 34,000 candidates on it whilst at the same time utilising a bespoke computer system, designed specifically for John Gibson Associates.
As the company goes from strength to strength we now have a limited number of franchise opportunities for those individuals who are keen to get onto the self employment ladder and start earning and doing business for themselves. Further for those individuals who chose to buy a John Gibson Associates franchise then your certainly not on your own as once you opt into the franchise then you become part of a proven business formula & successful team with all the benefits of being a member of the largest and highest profiled Automotive Recruitment Consultancy in the UK.
Any investments an individual should make in obtaining a franchise with John Gibson Associates is commensurate with the returns, and, in many cases the initial investment is repaid within the first year. Of course like most new business start ups success is down to the individual and the hard work and effort that they put in.

We have recently heavily invested in both IT recruitment systems and Social media presence

Recently promoted to National Franchise Operations Manager Tim Ryan works very closely with each of our Associate Directors and their staff to make sure that we utilise our unique position to deliver a consistent, integrated and uniform recruitment service to our clients. Appreciating that this is perhaps not a role you would necessarily associate within a recruitment company, due to the unique way JGA are structured it is one that is necessary. We have recently heavily invested in both IT and Social media presence to keep us as leader at the forefront of automotive recruitment and Tims' new role will enable us to capitalise on this and deliver a better, faster and more accountable service to both our clients and candidates.

More customers do car research online……

New research published in Motor Trader Magazine shows that 40 per cent of British motorists will complete all their research for their next car online.
Half of motorists will browse dealerships before they buy their next car and almost 60 per cent will test drive a vehicle before they buy it.
Chris Green, co-founder and sales director of, which carried out the research, said today’s car buyers are well informed and visit dealer showrooms armed with information.
“But despite the growing influence of the internet on car buying choice, many consumers still want to visit a dealership and feel the metal, first hand.
“The rising cost of motoring and the high standards of performance and reliability offered by almost all car manufacturers, has lead to a growing number of consumers who are no longer brand loyal and are buying their cars purely on price, the finance deal and MPG.
“Manufacturers and dealers have a great opportunity to engage non-brand loyal consumers earlier on in the car buying process, when consumers are short listing their cars.
"Without doubt, test drives and showroom visits could be increased if manufacturers and dealers targeted people who are most likely to consider their cars during the research stage."

UK commercial vehicle sales increase….

The number of commercial vehicles that were sold last month increased considerably, new figures suggest.

August saw a strong and sustained bounce-back across the van and truck industry suggesting a confidence boost among van, truck and haulage drivers.

Reports by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) showed that the total number of newly registered vans totalled 10,640 in August marking a 22.8% year-on-year rise in commercial vehicle sales in August 2011.

A total of 2,411 HGV’s were sold during the month up 23% year-on-year while LCV’s newly registered for the rolling year was more than 250,000.

Paul Everitt, chief executive of the SMMT, said:
“With the commercial vehicle market up by over 20% for the year to date, the industry is optimistic, but short to medium term economic uncertainty is likely to temper the rate of future growth

4% rise in Used Car Auction values in August

Motor Trader [[email protected]] report that Average values of used cars sold at auction rose 4 % in August, according to the National Association of Motor Auctions (NAMA).
Average values of fleet cars rose 3 % while dealer part exchanges fell by 1 %.
NAMA chairman Andrew Hulme said: “Whilst it is encouraging to report transaction prices slightly higher in August, continue to report challenging conditions.
“The auction and wholesale market remains finely balanced between supply and demand and it remains important that vendors remain vigilant, flexible and pro-active throughout autumn as the increase in stock from fleet and dealer sectors shifts the supply/demand balance.”
Hulme said top grade vehicles will continue to be in demand but vehicles, with incomplete histories will be priced down by selective buyers.
“The fresh stock entering the market represents a great opportunity for professional buyers to acquire stock for retail sale,” he said

No time to panic

I agree with you , no time to panic ,or cut too hard ,just continue to work hard focusing on our customers ,with a motivated team ,which is harder work to maintain at present and low staff turnover giving good ROI and high CSI .It is tough but there is still business out there and if people and processes are not good enough then the result will be obvious.
Keep your thoughts coming, .good to read, will always give constructive feedback.
Franchise Manager.