Bridgestone subsidised training designed to inflate spirits

Bridgestone’s commercial customers are being given a timely boost from the world’s largest tyre and rubber company, thanks to a provision of supported training courses aimed at helping them back on their feet following lockdown.

During the third quarter of a very difficult 2020, the company’s comprehensive range of accreditations – which helped secure three National Tyre Distributors Association (NTDA) staff training awards in the past five years – are to be offered at heavily subsidised rates to dealers for the first time.

By providing the wide range of qualifications, Bridgestone hopes to re-engage with – and empower – technicians and ensure its network of commercial partners provide a premium service when answering fleet calls.

The training will be delivered (applying social distance practices) at Bridgestone’s purpose built facility in MIRA, which features state-of-the-art equipment including custom-built trailer rig which simulates real-life situations and facilitates a lot of the wheel security practicals. More specialised topics such as locking rims, wheel flanges and tubeless tyres and crane tyre fitting are also covered on-site.

And in a further development, Bridgestone’s flagship REACT Roadside Technician and Roadside Technician Refresher courses will also be condensed from two days into one for those technicians with a minimum of 18 months’ experience to reduce the time away from the front line for valuable employees.

The accreditation was originally created by Bridgestone and has been adopted as industry standard. Around 6,000 technicians have qualified for the REACT Roadside Technician licence; around a third of whom qualifying through Bridgestone guidance.

Bridgestone’s training and development manager Paul Turner, said: “We want to offer our training programmes at these rates as a support measure to our valued customers, many of whom over the last two or three months and have been adversely affected by reduced revenue as a result of lockdown restrictions.

“Spending money on training might be low on their list of priorities right now, but we know better than anyone that technicians still need to be able to operate at the highest levels possible, whatever the environment we find ourselves in. By making this offer to the industry we hope to ensure technicians continue to work to the highest levels of safety and compliance in order to keep them working safely and within industry guidelines.”

“More than ever, a sense of standardisation is still required to ensure that the industry is functioning safely and professionally at the highest level. The training centre will be working to the highest levels of safety regarding Covid-19, with the courses being limited in delegate numbers to ensure compliance with social distancing, strict procedures regarding movement on site and measures to ensure the workshop and training room operate to the necessary standards of cleanliness.”

More details about Covid-19 related compliance and relevant social guidelines will be announced in the coming weeks and months.

All training will be offered at reduced rates but fees may be applicable due to outside awarding bodies fees for the provision of ID cards and certificates (where applicable).