Choosing a Career Path

Dealerships provide a wide variety of unique and challenging careers to meet the interests and skill levels of almost anyone. Following are just some of career opportunities available in the automotive industry.

MANAGEMENT


Management positions are often filled by promoting workers with years of related experience. These include sales managers, general managers and operations managers. They often need extensive business and management skills, usually acquired through experience as a manager in one or more of the dealer departments.

 SALES


While the showroom salesperson might be the public face of most dealerships, there are many types of sales positions. In addition to vehicle sales, these include Internet sales, aftermarket accessories sales, leasing and renting. Careers may be divided further into sub-categories of salespersons, such as executives, managers and specialists. Some dealerships also have separate sales teams for consumer and commercial vehicles.

AUTOMOTIVE TECHNICIANS/COLLISION/SERVICE TECHNICIANS


Workers in automotive maintenance and repair are an integral part of auto and truck dealerships. Service technicians service, diagnose, adjust, and repair vehicles such as cars, vans, pickups, and SUVs. Closely related to service technicians, automotive body technicians repair and finish vehicle bodies, straighten bent body parts, remove dents, and replace crumpled parts that are beyond repair. These positions include managers, estimators, collision repair technicians, paint and refinishing technicians, and more.

Supervisors of installation, maintenance, and repair workers, usually called shop managers are among the most experienced service technicians. They supervise and train other technicians to make sure that service work is performed properly. Service managers oversee the entire service department and are responsible for the department’s reputation, efficiency, and profitability. Service advisors cover service departments’ administrative and customer relations duties. They greet customers, listen to their description of problems or service desired, write repair orders, and estimate the cost and time needed to do the repair.

PARTS & SERVICE


In support of the service department, parts salespersons supply vehicle parts to technicians. They also sell replacement parts and accessories to the public. Parts managers run the parts department and keep up with inventory. They display and promote sales of parts and accessories and deal with garages and other repair shops seeking to purchase parts.

SUPPORT STAFF


Dealership office jobs come in many shapes and sizes and keep the day-to-day operations of the dealership humming. These positions include bookkeeping, accounting and auditing staff, general office clerks, office managers and administrative support staff, inventory control personnel, finance and insurance experts, and more.