Dealership Workforce Study

The annual Dealership Workforce Study (DWS) provides data dealers can use to fine-tune employee compensation and benefits, promote retention, and stay ahead of the demographic curve. Participants receive comparative statistics for their own car or truck dealerships.

Highlights of the 2018 Study (data collected from calendar year 2017)

  • In a turnaround from last year, dealership all-employee earnings growth kept pace with or exceeded earnings growth in the U.S. non‐farm private sector.  For all positions, all employees, average weekly earnings grew 3.1 percent compared to 1.1 percent average weekly earnings growth in the U.S. non‐farm private sector.
  • The all‐position, all‐participants national average annual compensation increased three percent to. Nearly all of the nine key dealership positions saw increases in their annual compensation. Service Managers and Service Advisors saw the greatest increase in compensation with gains of six and four percent, respectively. Sales consultants’ compensation was flat compared to last year, but other key positions saw average compensation gains of three percent.
  • The  2017  average  weekly  earnings  across  all  truck  dealership  positions  in  the  Study  were  $1,255,  a  decrease of five percent compared to last year’s Study, but still nearly 40 percent higher than the average weekly earnings in the U.S. private sector.
  • Using the new Pew Research Center definition of Millennials, our 2017 dealership workforce composition increased two points to 42 percent Millennials, compared to an estimated 35 percent in the U.S. non‐farm private sector.
  • Total dealership employee turnover in 2017 increased three points to 46 percent. The 2017 BLS estimate of employee turnover (total separations) in the non‐farm private sector was 48 percent – a one‐point increase compared to 2016
  • Average dealership hiring efficiency in 2017 dropped two points to 60 percent. Sales consultant hiring efficiency also dropped three points to 46 percent, meaning dealerships needed two new hires or more to find the right sales consultant.
  • At the end of 2017, only 19.2 percent of active employees on new-car dealership payrolls were women, two-tenths-point lower than 2016.  Despite increasing focus and action by OEMs and dealer groups to attract and recruit more women, the percentage of females hired by dealerships in 2017 decreased one point to 21 percent of new hires.
  • Among the nine key positions, service advisors had the highest ratio of women at 19 percent, followed closely by F&I Managers at 17 percent.  The ratio in sales consultant positions decreased slightly to 10 percent, while women sales manager positions increased from 4 to 5 percent.

The 2018 DWS analyzed more than 449,000 payroll records from 2,069 new-car and –truck dealerships that participated.

Buy the 2018 Edition Today

2018 Edition   "Automotive Retail: National & Regional Trends in Compensation, Benefits & Retention"

The 2017 Edition Is Still Available

2017 Edition   "Automotive Retail: National & Regional Trends in Compensation, Benefits & Retention"

For assistance, call NADA Customer Service at 800.557.6232 or or email