A group of independent dealers have launched a petition today to lobby the government to include commissions in furloughed staff packages.
Currently only basic wages are included in the government’s furloughed package of measures for car dealers and with many car salesman on tiny basic wages – some smaller the minimum wages – the dealers are hoping this petition will change ministers’ minds.
Car Dealer Magazine took a call from a worried salesman today who said: ‘We are on a basic of £15k and without commission 80 per cent of that is under the minimum wage. Bosses get away with it usually as it includes commission, but this package of measures doesn’t. There has to be changes.’
— JimReidVehicleSales (@jimreidvehicle) March 28, 2020
The Independent Motor Dealers Association (IMDA) wants the government to reconsider its plans which will have a huge affect on car salesman – and salesman in all industries – until retail is open again.
The petition says: ‘Within the UK automotive industry it is commonplace, like many other industries, for salespeople to be paid a small salary (sometimes around £12,000 pa) and a larger commission based on achievement of a sales target, which is now impossible to achieve due to the forced closure of car showrooms.
‘Please sign this petition to help these families of all the hard working Salespeople out there in the UK without which no sales would take place.’
I really do not think it is that complicated. A scheme for average monthly income is already in place for self employed and those with 'varied' monthly pay, so I cannot understand why it isnt in place for employed people who work hard for and rely on commission?
— Chris Bennett (@chris_s_bennett) March 28, 2020
The IMDA says it thinks a fair calculation would be based on the last three months’ wage slips to gain an average of 80 per cent.
Umesh Samani, of Specialist Cars, Stoke, who helped launched the petition said:
‘As motor industry sales staff salaries are based more on commission and bonuses than the basic salary, the government offer doesn’t include those. We feel this is unfair to probably most sales staff – they could never survive on the basic and we need the government to revisit this and help everybody out.’
The petition could be decisive, though, as some dealers will struggle to even cover the PAYE and NI contributions on the current 80 per cent of furloughed staffs’ wages – and certainly won’t be able to pay out any more.
Car dealers have warned that the longer the shutdown goes on for the more car dealership businesses will be at risk.
If the petition receives 100,000 signatures parliament almost always debates it in the House of Commons. However, there is no promise that will happen.
MPs can consider a petition for debate before it reaches the 100,000 mark. However, with much of parliament running on a reduced schedule this may prove difficult.
However, it will make MPs and minister take notice if the figures climbs quickly.