Sales Staff Must Prove Financial Prowess

With so many opting to use a finance option to pay for their new car, buyers need to know much more about their choices than just the model and colour they wish to choose.

There are many different forms of finance and you may have found when visiting other dealerships that, having gone through your selections with a member of the sales team, you are passed to someone else to deal with the financial aspects.

At Foray Motor Group, parent company of Andover Ford, that need to speak to a second person is eliminated because sales teams take what is known as the SAF test, which follows extensive training in financial products and has to be passed every year for a sales person’s SAF certificate to remain current.

“The purpose of SAF is to ensure that every member of the team understands the different finance options and, more importantly, can explain them to customers and guide buyers towards the scheme that best suits them,” says John Sunderland, sales manager at Andover Ford.

“Customers frequently build up a relationship with their regular sales contact and they want to deal with someone who understands what they need when they buy a car.

“So many buyers now see using a finance package as the most sensible way to arrange ownership of a new car that all sales team members have to be able to explain the options and understand how to provide customers with the best solutions.

“The modern sales environment means staff must be advisers and not just people keen to close a deal. It’s true that they have to know the Ford product range inside out as it’s possible to precisely tailor a car to fit the buyer, but it’s also possible to tailor the finance package, too, so they have to be fully conversant with all the options and explain them clearly. The SAF test is a tough one but it adds a great deal to the Foray customer experience.”

Polly has almost 20 years in the media industry. As Editor of Andover and Villages, she strives to bring the latest and greatest news with a minutes notice. Polly can be contacted via or alternatively called at