Got top techs?

user-gravatar Headshot

Don’t you think the technicians that keep your trucks rolling deserve a little more recognition? Here are a couple of ways you can do it.

First, the National Technician Skills Competition, also known as TMCSuperTech2007, will be held at the Technology & Maintenance Council’s fall meeting, set for Sept. 24-27 at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel & Convention Center. Technicians will be able to compete for awards and prizes, and the nation’s top commercial vehicle technician will be determined through a variety of troubleshooting tests over a two-day period.

Organized by TMC’s Professional Technician Development Committee (PTDC), TMCSuperTech2007 will showcase the skill and knowledge shown every day by trucking industry technicians. The competition is dedicated both to honoring technician professionalism and acknowledging the best of the best.

Here’s the scoop: Contestants will compete in a challenge round, consisting of a written multiple-choice exam. Then, finalists will advance to compete in the Hands-On Skills Challenge. There, contestants will compete at stations, covering such topics as electrical, brakes, HVAC, engines, steering, preventive maintenance inspection, drivetrain and service information.

The TMCSuperTech2007 Grand Champion will receive valuable prizes, while second- and third-place winners also will receive trophies and prizes. An added bonus is that all TMC attendees and TMCSuperTech2007 contestants will be able to attend the PTDC’s Training Fair – a series of hands-on training sessions designed for technicians, shop supervisors and fleet managers covering inspection, maintenance and diagnostics for overall vehicle, truck and trailer suspensions, ABS, wheel-ends, tires and wheels, basic electronics and cam brakes.

Contestants also can enjoy all PTDC food functions and receptions. Moreover, each contestant may bring one family member at no additional charge.

Any technician employed in the trucking industry can register, or be registered, for the competition. They need to be TMC Technician members, but that’s no big deal since the $100 entry fee buys a TMC Technician membership for the balance of 2007. Technicians who already are TMC Technician members can register free of charge.

To register your technicians, visit this site or call TMC at 703-838-1763. But hurry – the registration deadline is Aug. 31.

Another way to recognize your technicians is to have an in-house competition. That’s what Penske does. The recent 2007 Penske Truck Leasing National Technical Challenge featured a record-breaking 1,785 competitors from the United States and Canada.

Penske’s National Tech Challenge is a corporate competition designed to provide associates with skills testing through written and hands-on assessments. In the Vehicle Diagnostics event, an air-conditioning component was added this year to aid in company-wide troubleshooting. Teams of two worked together to correctly read diagnostic computer codes and troubleshoot air-conditioning system irregularities. In the Preventive Maintenance event, associates looked to ensure the truck’s systems ran correctly and that various parts were still functioning properly.

If you’d like guidance in setting up your own competition, download TMC’s “How to conduct a technician skills competition” at this site. Why not give your hardest-working people some time in the spotlight?