2020’s best HR strategy from overseas: Doğuş Automotive

One of the biggest automotive distributors in Turkey, Doğuş Automotive celebrated its 26th anniversary in 2020. Working with 524 authorised dealers had its challenges though – the organisation needed a solution to help dealers find candidates for certain job roles and conduct their own HR processes.

Hiring processes were ineffective and depended only on the dealership owner. No HR strategy was in place, and the network lacked process, educational requirements, training plans, and records of employee loyalty or satisfaction. All of this was having a knock-on effect of high employee turnover and cost in addition to time lost for training.

With senior level commitment and a budget of £250,000, Doğuş Automotive launched a unique project for its dealer network. DRIVE, ‘Doğuş Automotive’s Route is toward People and Education’, was launched in 2014 with the objective of improving the human resources management process for all 524 of its dealers and after-sales service centres, encompassing 8,000 employees.

DRIVE’s aim is to ensure family-owned-dealers have a standardised approach to people management. It provides consultancy on process and corporate HR management for each dealership, and offers employee training, compensation, performance management, job evaluations, internal communication, grading systems, employee loyalty and employer
branding applications.

DRIVE’s training programme, Drive Academy, provides a selection of online behavioural training courses via desktop and mobile compatible applications to help fill staff skills gaps. Online training is assigned weekly and usage rates can be monitored easily. In 2019, 52 online behavioural training classes were assigned to all users who not only attended sessions, but also joined online quizzes and surveys via mobile apps.

In order to adapt the programme to the needs of each dealership, the DRIVE team visited 140 sites in 52 different cities over 2,300 times.

The judges were impressed by the scale of Doğuş Automotive’s people strategy and how the people team managed to get employees invested in the initiative. They said it was clear that the people strategy was instrumental to the organisation’s goals and they found the entry very relevant and comprehensive.

They also thought the idea of an HR team giving awards to managers was a novel and interesting approach. The application not only communicated the real passion behind this project, but it also gave a real sense of the company and the country within which it operates.


Highly commended: HRMDO – Local Government Unit of General Santos City

Judges highly commended the governing body for the City of General Santos in the Philippines for this category as they were astounded by the efforts of HR manager Leah  Tolimao and her team. Judges were inspired by the strategy which showed strong links to local culture and a wider societal impact.



Pensees Pte
Petrol Ofisi


Find the full list of the 2020 HR Excellence awards winners here. You can also watch the event on demand and register your interest in the 2021 event here.