Q&A with Clare Martin, Group HR Director at Jardine Motors Group
1 June 2018
An authorised franchisee for 20 manufacturers, operating at over 70 locations nationwide, Jardine Motors Group is one of the UK’s top automotive retailers, employing over 3,500 team members, across industry-leading brands, such as Jaguar Land Rover, Porsche, Audi and McLaren.
We asked Clare Martin, their Group HR Director about her views on S4SNextGen and why Jardine Motors Group has enrolled on our work experience programme.
Q: S4SNextGen is helping to link the UK’s top employers with state school students who need these inspiring placements to help them build skills and insights for their future. Why is Jardine Motors Group taking part in this programme?
A: The automotive industry is a constantly evolving one, making it one of the most exciting to be in right now. It offers a plethora of job opportunities across a host of functions including technical, sales, management, customer service and support. However, it is also one where pre-conceptions, such as automotive being a male-dominated industry, can create barriers for both job seekers, and the employers themselves.
By partnering with S4SNextGen we hope to be able to raise awareness of the exciting career opportunities available to young people today within our industry and counteract any stereotypical impressions or preconceived ideas they may have.
Q: What do you think are the key components to an inspiring work experience at Jardine Motors Group? What skills, ethos and experiences do you hope will be embedded in each placement?
As well as offering the chance to work with some of the world’s most iconic motoring brands, including Ferrari, Porsche, Audi, Mercedes-Benz and Aston Martin, students can expect to be exposed to all areas of our business from sales and servicing, to HR, marketing and finance.
We also focus on helping to nurture their core skills such as influencing, communication and teamwork. These talents are not only central to our ethos here at Jardine Motors Group of providing the best customer experience possible, but they also help to equip the students with a set of transferable skills which they can benefit from in the future as a student, or across a host of industries in the world of work.
Furthermore, each student will be challenged to prepare and present a presentation to a panel of our senior colleagues, detailing their learnings from the week and the ways in which we can further improve our business and how we can better attract young talent.
Ultimately, we want to ensure that the students enjoy a memorable experience with us; one which gives them the opportunity to learn new skills that can assist them going forward, whilst providing an insight into Jardine Motors Group’s passion for providing the best customer service.
Q: Obviously, work experience is hugely beneficial to the employer and the student but how do you think this benefits your employees?
At Jardine Motors Group we are continually seeking new ways in which we can ensure we offer rewarding and fulfilling careers, to provide people with a job they want to do every day of the week, and more importantly they’re good at. Our work experience programme enables our colleagues to take inspiration from and share ideas with the next generation. It also allows them to seek out and build relationships with new talent which may become a real asset to their area of the business in the future.
Q: What skills and benefits can students take away from the placement, even if they aren’t expecting to go into automotive?
Many of the skills required for the automotive industry are transferable and moving between industries can actually give you more rounded skills that can ultimately help make you more ‘sellable’ to prospective employers. Students attending one of our placements can expect not only to hone their practical skills across areas such as customer service and sales, but more importantly, they can also improve their confidence and start to find their passion, enabling them to begin to nurture the necessary drive, personality and aptitude to make a difference to whichever industry they decide to enter.
Q: How has S4SNextGen and its resources helped your company make these placements possible?
At Jardine Motors Group we are passionate about recruiting the best new team members possible, irrespective of age, gender, ethnicity or background and we are dedicated to offering exceptional opportunities for our colleagues. Our work placements with S4SNextGen play a central role in helping us to raise awareness of the opportunities available within the automotive sector to the next generation. By working closely together we will be running a number of highly valuable placements this summer.
Q: What would you say to other employers considering enrolling on the S4SNextGen programme?
Working with S4SNextGen provides an excellent way to directly engage with the next generation of talent to not only find those inspiring applicants that have the potential to make a real difference to the future of your business, but to also share new approaches and ideas. We would certainly recommend enrolling on the S4SNextGen programme, their portal is excellent.
About Clare Martin
Clare Martin is Group HR Director at Jardine Motors Group, an authorised franchisee for 23 manufacturers, operating at over 70 locations nationwide, and one of the UK’s top automotive retailers. The Group employs over 3,600 team members, across industry-leading brands, such as Jaguar Land Rover, Porsche, Audi and McLaren. It is passionate about recruiting the best new team members possible, irrespective of age, gender, ethnicity or background and is dedicated to offering exceptional opportunities for its colleagues.
Clare has held senior management positions for more than 20 years, working across various sectors including high street retail, telecoms and software. Before joining Jardine Motors Group, Clare was Global HR Director for eFront, a niche global software provider and prior to this, worked at Home Retail Group supporting the Argos commercial division with their digital retailer journey.