Spring ramp-up: Tips to hire and train great sales staff

Publish Date: 
Mar 19, 2014
By Tory Hornsby

There’s never a good time to hire and train the right way. You and I are both unbelievably busy (and I’m also frequently out of the office), but we have to have great people to create a great business that doesn’t solely depend on us. Your business is worth much more when good people are operating it with systems and processes.

Put your hiring and training process in writing. Here is a salesperson job description to help get you started:

Sales associates are responsible for the sale of new and used units. The initial impression created by the sales associate is the impression the customer has of the entire dealership. The position requires an individual with excellent personal relation skills, product knowledge, and sales ability in following the dealership sales system. An outgoing, pleasant demeanor is a fundamental element for success as well.

You must interact in the most professional and honest manner possible with both customers and fellow employees. Seek first to understand, then to be understood. You will be motivated by a desire to excel and not merely be seeking to “get by.” This position will require you to be very organized, as many of your day-to-day responsibilities are time-sensitive. Procrastinators, poor time managers and the unorganized will be unable to perform to acceptable standards for any length of time.

Everything done in the department is done to create sales and put money in the register while putting smiles on the faces of our customers. You must be friendly, honest and knowledgeable about the products sold. You must participate in the “Sales Culture” of our dealership.

Following are some of the specific duties of the sales associate:

  • Acquire and maintain product knowledge of all vehicles sold at the dealership and have the ability to explain all features, functions and benefits to customers.
  • Acquire and maintain product knowledge of competition’s features and functions, and be able to explain why they come up short.
  • Ensure proper and timely greeting of customers entering the dealership.
  • Complete all paperwork in a timely manner as defined by dealership policy.
  • Accurately fill out the daily traffic log.
  • Effectively follow up with “be back” customers from the traffic log.
  • Fill out and mail thank-you cards for each customer who purchases a unit.
  • Fill out buyers’ orders for all desked deals; they must be accounted for at the end of the day.
  • Ensure that the showroom is neat and all units are cleaned. Units should be wiped down whenever there is a lull in activity.
  • Ensure that all vehicles on the showroom floor have drive-out tags installed on them.
  • Keep the customer lounge area neat and the brochure area neat and well-stocked.
  • Understand all steps of the sales process and ensure its use with prospects.
  • Maintain a professional appearance by adhering to the dealership dress code and being well groomed.
  • Arrange delivery of sales with the service department and make delivery to the customer personally. As part of the delivery process, you should introduce the customer to service department personnel.
  • Place a follow-up call with the customer a few days to a week after delivery to find out how they are doing and ask if they have any friends who may be interested in making a purchase.