Ladies, Start Your Engines: Here’s How Women Should get Started in the Motor Trade Industry

For far too long, women have stayed away from working in a garage. Too afraid that their gender will be the main focus point, rather than their skill with fixing a car. But times are changing now, and women have more confidence in dealing with the automotive trade. More and more women are feeling inspired to get into the industry and address the gender inequality issue.

The percentage of women employed across the UK dealerships stands at just 16% and this figure is pretty similar in other countries. This pattern is echoed throughout the world, expect in the United States, with 27% of women in motor trade jobs and 21% of dealership jobs held by women. Considering that women account for half the driving population, why are the figures so low? Perhaps now is the time to break that glass ceiling and start up your own motor trade business. There’s already the first UK all-women garage repair facility called Womanic, so why don’t you become the next?

Research, Research, Research

For years, women have been inventing things that have become a staple part of driving. For example, in 1902 Mary Anderson invented the first windscreen wiper. Florence Lawrence is credited with inventing the first turn indicator and the full stop signal that comes when applying the foot break. So even then, it seems pretty clear that women belong in the motor industry.

However, in order to be any good in the motor trade industry, you need to research as much as you can, and then do some more research on top of that. Just because you know how to change a tyre or fix a brake light, does not mean that you have enough knowledge about starting a motor trade business.

You need to be able to know what cars sell. What cars do people want in the current market? Real knowledge of the motor industry is essential, but so is having a basic understanding of the vehicle mechanics and values of vehicles. Obviously, you can’t be expected to know everything, and you’ll learn a lot on the job. But it’s better to do the research now, so that you feel confident when you open the doors to your motor business.

Get the Right Insurance

If you are planning on opening up your own business, then car dealers need to get traders insurance. As with any business you need insurance. Traders insurance (also known as motor trade insurance), will provide you with full cover if you are planning on buying or selling vehicles independently or commercial. So even if you are planning on selling cars for a little extra income from your home, then you will need trader’s insurance.

There are different kinds of insurance though, and you can get covered for different things. So, if you are planning on getting insurance, then make sure you talk to the insurance people about what your business actually does. If you need to transport cars, then that’s something that needs to be covered. If you only plan on selling your standard run of the mill cars, then this might help lower your insurance. However, if you want to sell sporty or flashy cars, then your insurance might go up since there is a higher risk factor with them.

Consider Part-Time Trading

If this is your first business ever, and you are just starting off. Then it might be worthwhile considering trading cars part time. This is a good way to get experience in the industry without fully committing to it straight away. If also helps give you that little bit of extra financial help, so that when you start your business full time you will have saved up enough (particularly as working part time, means you won’t have a large business loan).

Then again, you might have enough financial backing right from the very start and won’t need to save up. If this is the case, then you should just go for it, but make sure you get a traders insurance policy, particularly if you know that this is the industry that you love. Don’t let anything stop you if this is the case. If you have just started your business, then well done! You might find it helpful to check out this article here though about how to boost your business success, just to give you a little bit of an edge!


Award-winning writer, blogger, social media consultant and charity campaigner. Social Media Manager for BritMums, the UK's largest parent blogging network Freelance clients include Firefly Communications and Save the Children UK. Works with brands on marketing projects. Examples include Visit Orlando, Give As You Live, Coca-Cola and Kodak. Cambridge Law graduate with many years experience working across three sectors in advice, media relations, events, training and project management. Available for hire at affordable rates.

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