Monday, August 22, 2016

HAPPENINGS: THE MERCEDES-BENZ MALAYSIA SKILLS COMPETITION 2016 FINALS




Saturday, 20th of August 2016 was a gathering of the crème de la crème of Mercedes-Benz Malaysia’s after-sales personnel from dealer networks nationwide. It was the grand finals of the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills Competition 2016. The fun filled event was held at the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Training Centre in Glenmarie, Shah Alam.  30 finalists went head-to-head in the battle of skills for the RM99,500 cash prize and ultimate bragging rights as the best technical team in Malaysia.


The participants and finalists came from dealerships all over the country to participate in this bi-annual event - these meant teams from the big boys like Cycle Carriage Bintang, Hap Seng Star, NZ Wheels and also the other dealerships too (but the winners were from the first two dealerships). These finalists were skilled personnel armed with the Mercedes-Benz C-Program Certificate and they participated in 6 challenges - The Qualified Maintenance Technician (QMT), Qualified System Technician (QST), Certified Diagnosis Technician (CDT), Qualified Parts Process Specialist (QPPS), Certified Service Advisor (CSA) and the Automotive Mechatronic category (AMT). 

These six categories demonstrate the complete range of job profiles within the Mercedes-Benz Cars Certification Programme C-Service, including the Automotive Mechatronic category (AMT) - of which the Apprentices are undergoing their three-year training programme. All quite highly skilled as the levels of training that these folks receive are up to a high level of competence. I mean we're talking Mercedes-Benz level here you know. A brand that is associated with a certain pedigree and prestige. 


Anyway, it was actually fun attending the event. There was the on-stage competition for categories like Certified Service Advisor (CSA) who had to answer questions by beating the other competitors - like a pop quiz. There was also the one where the technicians had to diagnose what was faulty with the designated car within a fixed period for those in the categories like CDT. These were going on simultaneously so I had to keep one eye here and another there. There were cheerleaders too. I think they were from one of the Cycle Carriage Bintang dealerships. 


As I was part of the media people who attended the event, I also had a chance to participate in a media challenge which was specially organised for us - Three teams consisting of three media personnel had to change and rotate the front wheels of a W205 C-class. What I can tell you is that my team got third making us the top three media team for tyre changing and rotating in Malaysia. Who cares if there were only three teams. 

However, that 225/45/17 tyre and alloy wheel is bloody heavy. Last time I changed a tyre it was something in the 185/60/14 size. A good number of years ago. I then remembered why I do not bother changing tyres these days as I nearly threw up the peanuts and snack food I was stuffing myself prior to the media event. Note to self, do not eat before changing a tyre...especially if the car is of European origin (those that are aware will know what I am talking about).

Competitions like these are a means to reward the people who work tirelessly behind the scenes. It gives them a chance to excel and shine in the foreground occasionally. It also builds staff morale and also gives them something to look forward to. This is what you can call human capital development and you will always find companies like Mercedes-Benz carrying this out all the time. 

 Happy faces all around...
W205 Mercedes-Benz C-Class were the cars used in the competition





MEDIA RELEASE
Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills Competition 2016 Showcases Superior Technical Aptitude

Mercedes-Benz Malaysia celebrates the winners of the Mercedes-Benz Skills Competition 2016.  (standing tenth from left) Mercedes-Benz Malaysia President and CEO, Dr Claus Weidner with the senior management of Mercedes-Benz Malaysia alongside its dealer management and the winners.


Kuala Lumpur, 22 August 2016 – It was a gathering of the crème de la

crème of Mercedes-Benz Malaysia’s after-sales personnel from dealer

networks nationwide at the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills Competition

2016 Grand Finals held recently. 30 finalists went head-to-head in the

battle of skills for the RM99,500 cash prize and ultimate bragging rights as

the best technical team in Malaysia.

“Mercedes-Benz is the benchmark in automotive technology and customer

experiences, and we continue looking for more ways to further extend our

lead in these areas. The Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills Competition is a

good example of the exceptional standards upheld by our certified after-

sales personnel throughout our dealership network in delivering

unparalleled customer experiences,” said Mercedes-Benz Malaysia,

President and CEO, Dr Claus Weidner.

This year, the skills competition kicked off with a series of qualifying rounds

which comprised of theory and practicals tests. The culmination of the

Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills Competition was the grand finals where

deserving finalists showcased their technical aptitude through a

combination of theory and practical tests in addition to a spontaneous quiz.

Upholding Mercedes-Benz’s superior standards, the participating after-sales

personnel were meticulously evaluated by a team of Daimler AG-certified

trainers and area-specific experts.


Equipped with a Mercedes-Benz C-Program Certificate participants

competed across six categories. These included the Qualified Maintenance

Technician (QMT), Qualified System Technician (QST), Certified Diagnosis

Technician (CDT), Qualified Parts Process Specialist (QPPS), Certified

Service Advisor (CSA) and the Automotive Mechatronic category (AMT).

These six categories demonstrate the complete range of job profiles within

the Mercedes-Benz Cars Certification Programme C-Service, including the

Automotive Mechatronic category (AMT) - the Apprentices undergoing their

three-year training programme.

Explaining the relevance of the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills Competition

to its network partners, Dr Weidner said, “The Mercedes-Benz Malaysia

Skills Competition can be likened to the Olympic Games of the automotive

sector. It is a positive platform that promotes healthy competition among

our after-sales personnel while fostering self-development and life-long

learning. At Mercedes-Benz Malaysia, we believe that our people are the

bedrock of our long-term success. That is why we remain committed to

ensuring their continuous development. We believe that developing them to

be the best that they can be will ultimately result in delivering the best to

our customers.”

The bi-annual national competition was set up by Mercedes-Benz Malaysia

in 2008 to reward and inspire its after-sales personnel to continue learning

and improving in line with Mercedes-Benz’s training philosophy of life-long

learning. In addition to uplifting staff morale through engagement, the skills

competition’s stringent standard promotes a competitive environment

crucial in raising the nation’s skill level in line with international standards.

Dr Weidner congratulated all participants on their commitment to

excellence and the Mercedes-Benz brand. He said that all finalists were

winners in their own right and should be proud as they are living examples

of a uniform worldwide brand that provides customers with superb quality

services. This year, the 30 finalists received cash prizes totalling RM99,500.




Growing steadily over the years with increased participation and support

from the dealership network, the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills

Competition recorded 378 participants this year, it’s highest yet.

Todate, over RM 420,000 cash prize incentives have been awarded to top

after-sales teams since the inception of the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Skills

Competition in 2008.

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