Arnold Clark – Winner 2019, Best for Flexible Recruitment
3 key points
- Introduction of a five-day working week for sales consultants, as opposed to an automotive industry standard of six.
- Social media used to showcase flexible work patterns of a range of employees.
- Increase in women recruited and other high quality candidates.
“When I worked at a previous dealership on a six-day week it was exhausting. Now I’ve got time off in the week to myself and I’ve got a day at the weekend for family time. I’ve got more energy. I can come back into work and I’m not drained.”
Female Product Consultant
Switching to a five-day working week rather than the automotive standard of six, and using social media to showcase flexible work patterns of a diverse range of employees has resulted in a dramatic increase in the number of women recruited.
Rethinking roles so they fit in five days, not six, is making sales jobs at Arnold Clark appeal to a much wider talent pool. As is including messaging about flexible working.
The company now uses the ‘happy to talk flexible working’ strapline in job adverts and managers are asked to consider flexibility in roles as they arise.
Nearly half (43%) of Arnold Clark customers are women and the company is keen to reflect this in its workforce. To appeal to more women, the company took on board feedback from existing female employees and changed the wording in sales job adverts to show candidates don’t need to have worked in car sales before and can enjoy more flexibility than they might realise.
Recruiters and line managers are now trained in diversity and unconscious bias and this is achieving greater buy-in from recruiting managers when it comes to talking about flexibility with candidates.
The company proactively challenged the stereotype and that the car industry is only for men by running targeted social media campaigns showcasing a diverse range of employees with flexible work patterns. The content included stories from employees who are parents about how they have been able to progress in their career while working flexibly.
As a result of this activity, the company has recruited 85 of its 180 female employees since August 2018. At one new site, half the workforce is female. Previously, it received very few applications from women.
Across the organisation, a total of 3,500 employees work flexitime, 1,200 work part-time and more than half (55%) of product consultants work the new five-day week.