You might start as a cashier or wash attendant, but there’s now a clear track to career growth for the nearly 200 employees at Silverstar Car Wash.
Silverstar spent the second half of 2020 putting a big focus on training and development, creating defined career paths for entry-level team members to receive the training they need to become site managers.
Those career paths are detailed in person, so employees know exactly what it takes to move up. In addition, the career paths also are tracked online, allowing management across all 11 sites in Sioux Falls and Sioux City to visually see the training progress at other sites and compare it to their own.
“Our basic career path takes a new employee through our entry-level positions and prepares them up to the point of assistant manager,” regional manager Andrea Vetos said. “From there, one of the best things about being a part of a growing company is that our team members can really make their own path.”
One team member has worked with Silverstar for six years, moving up from a part-time wash attendant during high school through the management ranks to a position as a company trainer.
“We also have team members now who started with us as wash attendants or cashiers, realized they really enjoy what the car wash industry had to offer and worked their way up through assistant manager and now into site manager roles,” Vetos said.
Monthly raises for a year
You can’t advance in a company if you don’t stay, right?
To help new team members stay engaged at Silverstar, the company offers an incentive program allowing new hires to get a raise each month for the first year.
Monthly raises are tied to monthly “grade sheets” each team member completes, as well as a certification program for higher-level learning.
“These grade sheets cover the basics of the job,” Vetos said. “For our cashiers, they cover their knowledge and ability to inform the customers of our offerings and to solve any problems they might have. For our wash attendants, they cover properly loading customers in the wash and prepping the seasonal trouble areas.”
The certification program covers more in-depth topics such as chemical tracking and ordering, general function and maintenance of equipment, and the point of sale.
“These monthly raises are in addition to any training, performance or promotion-based raises,” Vetos added.
Silverstar is a very “hands-on” company at every level, so “we need site managers that are comfortable getting hands on in every aspect of the business, from hiring employees and customer resolution to scooping mud and repairing a motor,” Vetos said. “Many of the great people that are a part of our team are strong in one or two areas, but there’s so much more to the job.”
So in 2020, Silverstar also honed its training manuals for all positions and created a managers’ handbook, which offers a deep dive on key aspects of management, from customer service to employee discipline to resolving mechanical issues.
“Our investment in training prepares them to confidently do the job in all aspects,” Vetos said.
While Silverstar currently has a small training area at its East 10th Street site, its future headquarters on Minnesota Avenue will allow much more space for hands-on training and classes.
“We’re looking forward to that in 2021,” Vetos said. “By focusing on developing our team members, we ensure that they can serve our customers well if they continue to work with Silverstar. And if they choose to leave, we hope they take some things with them that prepare them for their future, whatever that may be.”