All over the UK there are car mechanics working away in all sorts of garages and auto centres, from independents to franchises, all doing the best job that they can for their customers.
Obviously there are the odd rogues that give tem a bad name, but the fault-finders and fault-fixers are invaluable to those of us that look under a bonnet and see a pile of metal that makes our car go without having a clue as to what we are looking at.
So, let’s hear it for these unheralded heroes that tinker and tap, solder and solve, change and clean… you know what I mean.
That’s why the prestigious annual ‘Top Technician’ competition to find the nation’s best vehicle servicing expert exists. In association with the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) Automotive Technician Accreditation (ATA), the search is on, with a total prize pot worth over £15,000 to the eventual winner, including a tax-free cash sum of £2,500.
The competition is open to any garage technician working in the motor industry – from independent workshops and mobile garages to franchised dealerships and fast-fit franchises – and the first round consists of an online test at www.toptechnician.co.uk which needs to be completed by February 25th 2013.
By completing the test the technician is automatically enrolled into the ‘Top Tech Club’, and once this date is reached, all entrants to the competition will get the correct answers to the online test so that they can highlight what they did right (and wrong) and can also spot where they may need to improve in order to give the best service possible.
The highest twelve scorers in the online test will be invited to Delphi’s Warwickshire training centre on March 22nd to undertake a half day series of practical tasks. From this, the 12 are whittled down, X Factor style (but with more integrity and ability, and no Louis Walsh histrionics) to a final six who will then battle it out on April 26th in the finals at the Honda Institute, Slough.
Even ten, the results are dragged out as the winner of the title – and the prizes too – is not actually announced until the ‘Top Technician Live’ training event, held at Mercedes-Benz World in Surrey on May 17th.
Cue tables of nervous ‘grease monkeys’ dressed up in ill-fitting dinner suits sat on their best behaviour until the results are announced. (I am joking about this bit – no death threats please!)
“The aim of Top Technician is to recognise and champion the thousands of workshop technicians whose contribution to the economy in today’s motorised society is all too frequently undervalued and on occasion, blatantly misrepresented,” said Top Technician project manager, Nicola St Clair. “Simply by entering, there is great kudos for technicians and their business, not to mention a great addition to their CV. There are also job-useful benefits including exclusive free access to the web based ‘Top Technician Forum’, a valuable resource for technicians to network with like-minded professionals and share their knowledge and expertise.”