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Shop owners need to get in step with what’s going on when it comes to hiring techs — You can’t put help wanted ads out like you did 10, 5, or even 3 years ago!!
Many shops are confusing job ads with job descriptions. A job description should be detailed, a somewhat dry description of the responsibilities and expectations for a job that a company uses internally.
A Help Wanted ad has to be different now, because it’s meant to sell applicants on your opportunity, company, team, and all the things that make you/your shop distinct – Do yourself a favor and read this again!
Think of a job ad as any other ad out there… We view it as a marketing challenge; its intention is to grab the attention of your target audience, in this case, top-notch automotive technicians.
Using marketing principles, it is known that the best product in a market space is the one that provides the ultimate solution to someone’s problem. So let’s dig a little deeper and see what’s the psychological side of it and why techs skip job ads.
If your ad still has things in it like – MUST have _____ and MUST be willing to _____, any possible candidate will not even stop to see what the rest of the ad is about.
The last thing they want to see is the list of requirements they will have to meet.
Something we have to come to accept in this world of techs aging out, with fewer opting to move into the field, of course in this real world, it is close to impossible to get a perfect solution, especially when we are talking about hiring an expert with the relevant professional skills and qualifications.
The New Normal Ad For Hiring Techs
When you’re a shop owner wanting to attract really good specialists (techs), you have to realize that in the first place, the meaning of a job listing is to provide an opportunity. You must also realize those looking have plenty of opportunities and, in most cases, their pick of which one they choose – AND THE GOOD ONES DO NOT NEED TO “LOOK” FOR A JOB.
This is the “New Normal” for most shops trying to attract top-notch technicians! ============>>
The sooner you realize that, the faster you’ll start to see options to make this opportunity more attractive. Here are some of the major motivation killers that automotive technicians have experienced for years in their profession:
- Not appreciated – many employees feel their employer doesn’t care about them and/or their problems.
- Underpayment – given the current state of availability, now is their opportunity to rectify that problem. There is always a discussion about what top tech labor is worth.
- A reason why younger techs look to move on, this is especially true at independent shops — they’ve reached the “ceiling” and have no other perspective – “Ok, I’m a top tech and now what, I can’t grow any further?” – and here comes the fear of being stuck at that level for life.
- Being used for tasks out of the scope of what they are hired for. You don’t see other professionals being asked to sweep the floor when things are slow.
- Required to work longer against their will – They are not willing to give up their family time, especially since they NOW know they don’t have to.
- They got trained but the only way to benefit is to leave their current employment and negotiate better conditions for their next employment, because otherwise nothing ever changes – their work conditions, tasks, and wages stand still forever.
- Health issues (especially with the techs that have been at it for a while) that restrict a certain type of operations – many employers don’t take into account health issues and force their employees to perform beyond their capability.
There is a key point that I want to mention, which is your ability as an employer to connect with your current or future employees, listen to their pains, and match solutions to them. For many this thinking is foreign to what they’re used to — Again, it’s 2021!
It is going to build your relationship and earn their trust so that they follow you on every step. Besides the problems originating from the nature of work and environment, your potential team players might have a number of issues in their private life, too.
There isn’t much that you can do there but at least you can show some empathy towards what’s going on.
Of course, job responsibilities and necessary qualifications should be outlined too, but it must come in second place and should NOT be part of the initial ad!
The real purpose of good job ad copy is to attract as many eyeballs as possible and take care of the application flow. It is also a pre-qualification of your prospects, be sure to use the language that speaks to sift out those who don’t fit your vision.
Once you’ve got enough applications you can take the next action which is actively interviewing your potential team members. This is the crucial phase of attracting the right people to your team. Once/if you decide they may be a fit, you then want to go about figuring out what is important to them, when it comes to a job or where they want to work.
To start with use a descriptive job headline.
This is the first important part of your job listing. When you write your title, include an inspiring descriptive word or a combination of words (adjectives) beside the relevant level & title of the position such as ‘inspired’, ‘energetic’, ‘brisk’, ‘enthusiastic’, ‘incandescent’, ‘ambitious’, ‘passionate’, ‘confident’, ‘competent’, etc.
For example “Enthusiastic and passionate skillful automotive technician / mechanic” or “Inspired and ambitious qualified vehicle technician / mechanic”, etc. which immediately elicits uplift and new hope.
Briefly describe the features of the newly open position that serves to show them your shop is the right place for them to apply.
Example: “You, as a passionate and inspired skilled vehicle technician have the opportunity to earn a sustainable income in a family-owned auto repair shop with excellent company culture and growth-fostering environment.”
As you can see, in a sentence you can add so much value and meaning plus this example sounds very positive and inspiring and can’t be far away from the truth.
Go into detail what your company culture and spirit looks like, the things that you treasure most as a person and professional, what is the relationship between you as a leader, your appreciated team mates, and your valued clients so that they get clarity about the environment that you’re craving to create. This section serves to repeal the bigger part of mismatch applicants, whose aims are different than yours.
Next describe the benefits from working in your shop i.e. your attitude and approach to resolving the existing job-related fears and problems so that they get the sense of security for their future and see a growth perspective.
Don’t oversell, list only those that you are able to fulfill. If you want to attract people from other places (we’re seeing more of), give them details about schools, activities, local amenities, things to do, overall quality of the area, etc.
Now you go to what are the steps in the application process.
Let your candidates know how the application process is going to unfold and what they can expect next. This is the closing section where you will want to quickly underline your distinctions and encourage the applicants to apply, i.e. convince them why they should consider you before other choices.
My advice, and what we know to work, is to use all available job websites and also websites where many technicians hang out like Facebook groups and technical forums. If you join these groups which is easy to do, you can post free of charge job announcements using the relevant links.
If you’ve been servicing and repairing certain makes and models of vehicles, the best choice would be to join the relevant Facebook groups and list your open positions there because many skillful technicians are members of these same groups too.
IMPORTANT!!! Before making such a post ask the group admins if you’re allowed to do so as not all groups allow posting off-topic publications.
I know many of this is much different than what most are used to, which is why if you follow the advice your technician help wanted ad will stand out from all of the others out there.
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