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Eagers Automotive NZ celebrates 1,264 years of continuous employee service
On Thursday the 12th August during a beautiful evening in Auckland, the Eagers Automotive New Zealand Team came together at Mantells Mount Eden to formally recognise and award employees for their dedication and commitment to the business over 10+ years of continued service.
This was the sixth event Eagers Automotive NZ (formally Automotive Holdings Group NZ) has held to celebrate employee long service, however marked seven years of recognising employee milestones due to last year’s event being postponed on the back of COVID-19 challenges.
The Eagers Automotive Long Service Awards launched in NZ in 2015 to recognise and award continuous employment within the business. All employees who have been employed by Eagers Automotive for a continuous period of 10 years or more are invited to attend the event and employees who enter a Long Service milestone within the previous financial year receive an award recognising their special achievement. The employment milestones are 10, 15, 20, 30, 40 and 50 years.
This year, Eagers Automotive NZ was proud to celebrate 1,264 years of combined service from 63 long service members across Eagers Automotive NZ dealerships (John Andrew Ford, North Harbour Ford, John Andrew Mazda, North Harbour Mazda, West Nissan, Manukau Nissan, Davie Motors Holden, Manukau GMSV, Auckland Motors Mitsubishi, Manukau Hyundai, easyauto123) and Group operations including the Pre-Delivery Centre and Trade Parts Centre.
23 milestones were celebrated during this year’s event; 13 earned during 2020 and 10 earned throughout 2021.
Although all long service milestones are cheered each year, two very special employees were acknowledged for their significant achievements; Neil Meyer, a parts interpreter in the Group Parts Trade Centre and Kevin Elmsly, a technician at North Harbour Mazda both reached 50 years of continuous service. Sharing their stories and this momentous milestone with attendees on the night, NZ General Manager Mike Critchley led a hearty round of applause for both gentlemen. In the history of NZ’s Long Service Awards this milestone has only been achieved three times - Kevin and Neil now joining former Davie Motors Holden employee Frank Brewer who earned the distinguished milestone in 2015.
Long service employees represent an extremely diverse range of roles and career pathways across the Group, with awards going to recipients in almost all areas of the business this year. Positions held by 2020/2021 recipients include workshop foreman, technician, storeperson, vehicle detailer, sales consultant, business manager, receptionist, credit controller, assistant accountant, financial controller and more.
Recipients were invited to select their preferred gift from an online portal in advance of the event. In previous years, awards would be gifted on the night however with many recipients choosing large items this year – fridge/freezer, 10kg washing machine, electric lawn mower, 21-drawer toolbox, TVs to name a few – the decision was made to deliver gifts directly to employees prior to the event. This allowed the evening itself to be less formal and structured than previous events and enabled guests more time to enjoy, engage and interact with their colleagues and peers throughout the evening. While 14% of Eagers Automotive NZ’s workforce currently have more than 10 years of continuous service with the company, the average tenure of long service employees attending the event was an impressive 20 years. The guests had a lot of talk about!
Mr Critchley who was recognised for 20 years of long service in 2018, expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation to all employees for their commitment, dedication and continued support to the business over what has been an unprecedented and at times, unpredictable journey.
Addressing the room, he said “together, we have navigated huge changes in recent times including new business ownership, the exit of Holden from the NZ market, an ongoing global pandemic and the introduction and rapid growth of our new used vehicle brand, easyauto123”.
“Throughout all of this, one thing is abundantly clear” he continued. “That is that you, our employees, are the single greatest asset Eagers Automotive NZ has. You are all critical to our ability to serve our customers and provide exceptional experiences across the range of products and services we offer. Without your continued passion and belief in our business we simply couldn’t do what we do. I feel proud and honoured to stand here tonight on behalf of our business to thank you for your service”.