Young people gear-up to discover careers in automotive retail

02 November 2012 #SMMT News

Young people, teachers and careers advisors will get a rare taste of what it’s like to work in one of the UK’s largest and most diverse sectors this month, as automotive retailers across the country open their doors to showcase the job opportunities available.

Throughout November, dealer groups and automotive companies will roll-out a national programme of eye-opening events and activities as part of industry’s Discover Automotive Retail initiative, highlighting the breadth of career prospects in the motor industry’s dynamic retail sector.

Co-ordinated by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) in partnership with the Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI) and industry’s Sector Skills Council – the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI), Discover Automotive Retail seeks to shake up current perceptions of careers in the sector.

“Automotive retail offers a fantastic range of exciting and rewarding job opportunities for young people as well as long-term training and career development incentives,” said Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive. “The wealth of activities taking place during the coming weeks demonstrate the true scale of opportunities available and industry’s ongoing commitment to attracting fresh talent to the sector.”

Sue Robinson, RMI Director said, “Many are not aware of the wide range of careers available across the sector including technical, sales, finance and administration.  The scheme will offer young people an invaluable insight into the retail motor sector through its specially tailored events and activities.”

“Providing the right information to influencers, such as careers advisors and parents, is key to changing perceptions and attracting the right calibre of talent into the sector,” said IMI Executive Chair, Sarah Sillars.  “Over the next two weeks, we have a great opportunity to reach people who may not have considered a career in the automotive industry before.  We can also showcase the IMI’s industry specific careers and information portal ‘Autocity’ which is free to everyone, from careers advisors and teachers to young people who want to learn more about  the wide range of career choices available.”

The automotive retail sector is a key contributor to the domestic economy, generating around £146bn* per annum – around 5% of the UK’s total turnover, employing more than 500,000 employees, selling more than 2.5 million new vehicles every year and helping keep the country’s 35 million registered vehicles on the roads.

The sector spans a comprehensive range of interesting, engaging and challenging careers – from vehicle technician and customer services to sales, marketing and finance. Each year the motor industry takes on around 12,000 retail apprentices and employs more than 700,000 people across retail and aftermarket, design, engineering, manufacturing and the supply chain. is the one stop shop for careers information and advice on the retail motor industry. Here you will find useful tools such as the World of Work, where you can hear from over 150 real people doing real jobs and learn everything about different roles in the sector from what it takes to do the job, the qualifications required and what the work is like. If you’re not sure what you want to do, World of Work will help you consider many different potential career opportunities by linking jobs together that share common skills and interests.  Whether you’re an individual looking to start or progress your career, a teacher or career practitioner who is supporting others in making their career choices, Autocity is the right place to start.


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