Interview – Zlatomir Angelov, General Manager of Omnicar Auto
1. How does the job market in the automotive industry look like at the beginning of 2017? What sectors of the industry are the most challenging in terms of recruiting and which one offers the most jobs? [design, development, marketing, sales]
The job market in the last year has been very dynamic. It is becoming a bigger and bigger challenge for companies to find qualified and prepared people in our sector – sales and service. We have significant difficulties in recruiting specialists like mechanics, electromechanics, painters, but also people for the operational level – salesmen, accountants. The salary is not the decisive factor anymore when people are looking for a job. They are also interested in factors like popularity of the company, working environment, location, transport, working time etc.
I would say that it is not easy to find good specialists in any area. In my view, this is one of the main factors that limits the opportunities for growing sales and increasing the quality of service.
2. What are the challenges of recruiting for the industry, especially in the sales department?
The 2008 crisis affected our industry significantly. Some dealerships were not able to face the crisis and filed for bankruptcy. For a long period, companies in the sector decreased their investments. The effects were that a lot of good managers and salesmen left the sector and moved to other industries.
However, the positive changes in the last 1-2 years have led to increased demand for people in the Sales department. It was then when we realized that there were no trained and prepared people on the market.
Because of this we had to change our approach. We decided to start hiring young university graduates, without experience in our industry, and to develop them. This was a big success for us – the young, motivated and talented people adapted very quickly to our specific processes and standards in the sales and the customer service. Their adaptability, ability to learn quickly and their ambition to be successful helped them reach the level of their colleagues with 10 years of experience and even become better than them in some areas, in only 6 months.
3. How does Omnicar Auto usually recruit? Is there an internal selection first, do you work with referrals, or do you post all job announcements on specialized websites? What is the extent to which the General Manager becomes involved in the recruiting process?
The recruitment process in Omnicar Auto is different, depending on the position we recruit. Usually, the department managers (Sales, Service and Finance) recruit new employees by themselves. We use some specialized web-sites for job posting.
I only participate for positions responsible with business development. These are the managerial positions. As the people on these positions are critical for the development of the company, I always use the expertize of a recruitment agency. To be more concrete, I trust the professional and competent advice of the 1tedjob consultants a lot.
4. What is the usual career path for a successful sales person? What are the main stages a future successful sales person passes through, beginning from, let’s say, college? Is it somewhat of a calling or can you train yourself to become a very good sales person?
The ”usual” career path is strongly individual. There is no recipe for success. Where a person will start and where he or she will arrive is only about personal qualities, motivation and hard work.
Looking at my experience – after graduating university, I started to work as a salesman in the showroom of Nissan in Plovdiv. 10 years later, I was already the General Manager and also a partner in Omnicar Auto. Today, another 10 years later, our company is the biggest dealer of Renault, Nissan and Dacia in Bulgaria. We have dealerships also offering after-sales service in Sofia, Plovdiv and Burgas. This year I expect our team will increase to more than 170 people and the number of cars sold to arrive to more than 2500.
5. What are some of the selection criteria for future Omnicar Auto employees? What are the filters they need to pass and what are the relevant abilities in order to be eligible for a position in your company?
The abilities of the potential candidates could be very different depending on the position they apply for. The specifics in our work are very diverse.
However, the candidates must convince the department Manager that they have the necessary skills to meet the requirements of the position. This is only the first step: after that they must prove these skills in their real job. If we were to define the main abilities which are the most important for future development of a person in Omnicar Auto, those would be the ability to think, responsibility, loyalty, motivation to work and motivation for success.
6. Why did you choose 1tedjob as a solution for recruiting?
We started to collaborate with 1tedjob a couple of years ago when we had to recruit people for important positions for our business and we have had great success until now.
I trust the 1tedjob team, because I appreciate their expertize a lot, their professional judgements and the great experience they have. I hope to continue working together with the same success in the future.