Our Chief Executive Officer, Bill Berman, has recently spoken to leading industry title, What Car? Magazine, as part of their ‘Insider’ series.
The interview gives a fantastic insight into Bill’s passion and vision for Pendragon, as well as his thoughts on the company’s performance during the COVID-19 pandemic, the recent rightsizing of the business and the future of the car industry.
Welcome to Speakers' Corner - monthly talks by influential team members from different parts of the business, with an open invite to all associates.
Hosted at our head office, Speakers' Corner events are a fantastic opportunity to get into the heads of our successful leaders, inspiring our future leaders of tomorrow.
Here's what our line up has looked like so far:
Customer Experience Director - 'Inside the Mind of the Customer'
Head of Learning & Development and Head of Talent & Resourcing - 'Standing Out from the Crowd - What Does High Potential Look Like?'
UK Divisional Finance Director - 'Myth Busting... A Financial Career'
HR Director - 'Who Do You Think You Are?'
Stratstone Managing Director - 'What Makes a Great Leader'
Used Car Operations - 'Adapting to Change within a Large Business'
Divisional Finance Leader - 'Building a Successful Team'
L&D Coordinator - 'Drive Your Career Forwards'
Chief Operating Officer - 'A Day in the Life of Martin Casha'
Marketing Director - 'Myth Busting... Marketing and Communications'
Head of Talent & Resourcing - 'A Day in the Life of... Resourcing'
Learning & Development Consultant - 'Developing Your Career Plan'
The automotive industry isn’t a man’s world – the girls are taking over!
Every March on International Women’s Day, we celebrate the wonderful women that we work with every day! Sometimes, the industry can be mistaken as being a male dominated workplace, but with the hundreds of women within our dealerships and at Head Office, we’re certainly breaking that mould.
Celebrating the day, Car Store, Stratstone, Evans Halshaw and Pendragon Head Office all got involved with raising awareness against the bias by our social media channels, recognising women in a variety of different roles, from Technicians and Service Leaders to Heads of Business and Customer Service Assistants.
We are super proud to have so many fantastic, inspirational women across the group who are constantly changing the stereotype attached to a career in the automotive industry.
Stratstone is delighted to announce that three of its Porsche Centres have been awarded a Porsche Top 100 Excellence award for outstanding customer satisfaction and sales performance.
The awards were each presented to Porsche Centre Bolton, Porsche Centre Sutton Coldfield and Porsche Centre Wolverhampton.
The accolade recognises the Top 100 performing Porsche Centres across the world, with only five UK Centres receiving the accolade from Porsche Cars GB.
A spokesperson for Porsche Centre Wolverhampton commented: “We are extremely pleased to see our associates’ hard work and dedication recognised in the Porsche Top 100 Excellence Awards. We strive to put our customers at the heart of our business and it is the perfect reward to see ourselves alongside other top performing Porsche Centres around the world.”
Pictured left to right are the sites' New Car Sales Leaders: Ben at Porsche Centre Wolverhampton, Kieran at Porsche Centre Bolton and John at Porsche Centre Sutton Coldfield.
We support Time To Change, having made a pledge as a business to help end the stigma surrounding mental health. It’s been a chance for all of us to be more open about mental health – to talk, to listen, to change lives.
We encourage all our associates to ‘be in their mate’s corner’ – recognising when their colleagues aren’t themselves and starting conversations! The more conversations we have, the more barriers we can break down, helping to end the shame, isolation and worthlessness that too many people with mental health problems find themselves feeling.
To support our associates with dealing with mental health in the workplace, our HR and Learning & Development teams run regular Mental Health Workshops. Available to leaders within the business, these workshops make our leaders more aware of mental health, whilst helping them spot early signs of mental ill health within their own team.
All our associates also have access to the EAP (Employee Assistance Plan), via which they can speak with qualified, impartial counsellors about any problems, work or personal related, 24/7.
Every year we support the Time To Talk Day – this year, our Head Office associates enjoyed coffee and home baked cakes whilst chatting to their colleagues openly about mental health. Associates from all areas of the business were also encouraged to make a pledge on our giant foam board speech bubble, which made for a great talking point!
We have 328 apprentices, over 15 programmes across the business.
An apprenticeship is a fantastic way to kick start your career, learn on the job and gain a qualification on the way. Then the progression opportunities are endless - even our own COO started off at Pendragon as an apprentice technician!
Don't just take our word for it - here's what some of our apprentices have to say:
“After being very nervous as my first job since leaving full time education, I feel as though I fitted in straight away, and have for sure made the right choice taking the leap from education to the working world. I thoroughly enjoy my job!”
Owen, Ford Retention Agent
Customer Service Apprenticeship, CX Hub
“I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship to others. I know many people, such as myself, struggle sitting in a classroom all day, every day. But this way it is a healthy mix of both, also allowing you to hone practical skills that would just never develop in the classroom.”
Robert Grime, CV Service Apprentice Evans Halshaw Ford Preston
“My favourite part is being able to apply what I've learnt in the apprenticeship, to my role with Pendragon. As they're externally provided, it challenges the way you approach things, and gives you further insight.”
Jennie Lockwood, Talent Specialist Resourcing Team, Pendragon PLC
Armed with a degree and ready to hit the working world? Our graduate schemes are a fantastic way to start your career, fast-tracking you to a leadership position whilst learning skills throughout the business along the way.
Don’t just take our word for it though – we caught up with some of our graduates to hear exactly what they think about the scheme!
Owen, Retail Management Graduate
“The grad scheme is one of the best things I’ve ever done. Leaving university without any clear path meant that coming onto this scheme was a perfect choice. The program features regular training and reviews, at set intervals, so that your targets are always clear.
“More importantly, no two days are the same, as you have to react to changing circumstances or relocations in order to progress. For example, I have moved from Yorkshire to Nottingham to test myself in a different capacity in a separate part of the business. With some store closures and reorganisation of the business, emphasis and responsibility has been placed on myself and on the other graduates, lending us a great deal of experience that will serve us well going forward in our careers.
“If you want a challenging but rewarding career, I would seriously consider applying for this graduate scheme. Pendragon is a fantastic company to work for and I would do it all again if I had my time again!”
Nakeeb, Commercial Vehicle Sales Team Member on the Retail Management Graduate Scheme, Evans Halshaw Ford Wolverhampton
“I started the Pendragon Retail Management Scheme in March 2019. Prior to that, I was working for Pendragon as a Customer Service Assistant within the Car Store division.
“The scheme is structured well with lots of exposure to various parts of the business, different franchises and manufacturers. You know exactly where you will you be placed and how long you will be there for, also what your role is and the reason why you have been placed in that particular location or dealership. Each scheme is different and you will never be doing the same thing as another graduate.
“I was fortunate to begin the journey with Car Store, beginning with the implementation team travelling the country, opening and supporting new sites while gaining experience in different departments and in leadership positions. Travel costs are subsidised and relocation support is sometimes available, depending on the job role.
“Currently I am working within our Evans Halshaw Ford Division in Commercial Vehicles, and then moving to a Stratstone Porsche Centre.
“You will have regular reviews from the Graduate Team, looking at what you’ve covered so far and how you wish to develop further; however the development is all in your hands and the more work you put in, the further you will go.
“The Training and Development Team at the Pendragon Training Academy is really supportive and hold lots of training courses and modules, looking at things like Leadership Development and Customer Service, which can really transform the way you operate within a dealership. They also hold manufacturer specific training.
“The training sessions can be booked online by yourself or by your leader. They are also a fantastic way to build rapport with people all over the business, from other dealerships to other colleagues at our head office or CX Hub, to see how they operate.
“The graduate journey can be very demanding at times as a lot is expected from you. So, what I’d recommend to new graduates is to be open, honest and ready for new opportunities. You should view every dealership move as a new start, adapting quickly and implementing everything you’ve learned each time you move. You will make mistakes but the key is to learn from them fast and make sure they do not happen again.
“You must be ready for constant changes and adjust accordingly, while having the ability to work with and build rapport with different people quickly. Being flexible in terms of travel and relocation will also help you explore opportunities which can aid development in the larger scheme of things.”
Fundraising is a big part of Pendragon and our team members love getting involved in charity events to raise valuable funds for local and national causes!
Here are some of our most recent fundraising events:
- £1336.08 raised for Save The Children from Christmas Jumper Day, helping unfortunate children across the globe
- 70 presents donated by Pendragon Head Office for ‘Gift of Christmas’ initiative, for local children in Mansfield staying in temporary accommodation over Christmas
- Ford Transit van donated to Rock FM’s Cash For Kids Christmas campaign by Evans Halshaw Ford Preston, used to transport gifts to disadvantaged children for Christmas morning
- 30 presents delivered to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital by Evans Halshaw Ford Old Trafford, in conjunction with Ronald McDonald House, who provide accommodation for families of sick children in hospital
- Dog treats and toys donated to Jerry Green Dog Rescue by our Customer Service Team at Pendragon Head Office, helping local homeless dogs
- Hundreds of Christmas selection boxes donated to three local hospitals by Harley-Davidson Wolverhampton, Wolfruna H.O.G Chapter and customers, to children who are spending the festive period in hospital
- Presents donated to Hits Radio Cash For Kids by Evans Halshaw Ford Ashton, helping disabled and disadvantaged children across Greater Manchester
- Pyjama and onesie wearing, treasure hunts, quizzes and bake sales raising money for Children In Need, helping disadvantaged children and young people from all walks of life
- £367.50 raised for Macmillan Cancer Support through Sober October, helping provide specialist care, information and financial support to people affected by cancer
- Beautiful bakes by our associates across the country raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support’s Coffee Morning
Here at Car Store, we're transforming auto retail! Driven, building trust and making a difference, our crew members bring our Car Store values to life.
Our crew members are what separate us from the competition. They’re the people who make a real difference to our stores, our customers and their experience.
Together we are Car Store!
At Evans Halshaw, we represent 12 brands throughout 130 locations, spread all across the UK. We’ve driven the industry forwards with innovative ideas, and we’re proud to work with many of the UK’s most innovative manufacturers, offering you the chance to get your teeth stuck into everything automotive.
Whether it’s customer service, sales, aftersales, technicians, leadership, accounting, administration or facilities that fuels your motivation, our people love working here for lots of reasons, but one outshines the rest – no one stands still with us. Recognition and investment in our people form the basis of our success – discover just how far your career can take you!
A career with Stratstone gives you the unrivalled opportunity to get up close and personal with the types of vehicles many people can only dream about. Having provided high quality cars and services in the unique Stratstone style since 1921, we’re passionate about providing every single customer who walks into our showrooms with an unrivalled, personal and exceptional service.
In one of our 100 retailers across the UK, you’ll play a key part in taking our prestigious brands to the next step, and in return, you’ll be supported at every step of your career journey.
Whether it is customer service, sales, aftersales, technicians, leadership, accounting, administration or facilities that you’re looking to progress within, no one stands still with us - start your Stratstone story.
As a Pendragon associate, you’ll get the chance to get involved with all sorts of exciting events – from team incentives to customers' VIP events.
Every year, we host a glittering awards ceremony at a luxury resort to celebrate our top performing associates, plus our leaders also attend annual divisional conferences to keep updated on the latest company news and future direction.
We organise regular sales and service incentives, with previous prizes including all expenses paid trips to California, Barcelona and Ibiza.
Our customers don’t miss out either, and you might be playing host to our VIPs, launching new models and unveiling the latest manufacturer developments.
Every year we host events at the classic Shelsley Walsh race track, giving our customers the chance to get up close and personal with classic race cars within our exclusive enclosure.