It seems we are in the midst of Skills contest season at the moment with Isuzu staging its skills contest a couple of weeks ago and this has been followed in the past week by Japanese rival Hino, with the ninth annual Hino National Skills Contest being staged, where 18 of Hino’s best sales, parts and service personnel from around the country competed after winning their way through qualifying rounds held over the last five months.

Hino says its National Skills Contest showcases the proficiency of sales, service and parts experts from its national dealer network and is run annually.

“As always, we never fail to be impressed by the skills and expertise of the people in our dealer network – our Skills Contest is the most comprehensive of its type in the industry,” said Hino chairman and CEO,  Steve Lotter

“Over the nine years we have changed the format to showcase this expertise, with this year being the fourth that sales consultants have been tested alongside service technicians and parts interpreters,” Lotter said.

“Once again the contest was incredibly close, as it was throughout the qualifying rounds. I congratulate everyone who participated, it’s fantastic to see such commitment.”

Finalists in the sales and parts categories demonstrated their expertise through a series of role play scenarios, while the service technicians were tested on their diagnostic, analytical and technical skills in a series of hypothetical exercises.

Parts contestants were further challenged to identify genuine and non-genuine parts, while sales consultants were quizzed on their product knowledge.

“At Hino our skilled dealer network is a key to providing exceptional customer service for our customers, and in building the trust the market has in our brand,” Mr Lotter said.

“That’s why this contest is very important to Hino, it has a very positive flow-on effect for everyone involved.”

The 2018 National Skills Contest winners are Thanh Nguyen from WA Hino (Service), Stan Voltemar from WA Hino (Parts) and Joel Ferrante from Prestige Hino (Sales).

All three winners have earned an all-expenses-paid trip to Japan in October to watch the annual Hino Japan Skills Contest.

Adding to the excitement of this year’s event was the Australian versus New Zealand Service Challenge between Heidi Inkster, winner of the Hino New Zealand’s event, and Asa Pearson from CMI Adelaide, a previous Hino Australia Skills Contest winner.

Each contestant took part in a series of repair and diagnostic tasks over 30 minutes with the results tied at the end.

The event was held at Hino Australia’s Sydney headquarters and attended by VIPs including Mr Lotter, and Hino Australia President and COO Shunichi (Sean) Takahashi who were joined by representatives from Hino Japan including Senior Managing Officer Mr Ichiro Hisada, General Manager – Asia & Oceania Division, Mr Mitsuharu Tabata, Deputy General Manager – Aftersales Service Division Mr Kouichi Katou and Manager – Parts Operation Division, Mr Kazuyoshi Konagaya.

Hino National Skills Contest Winners 2018

1st – Thanh Nguyen, WA Hino
2nd  Geoff Mallett, Adtrans Hino
3rd – Peter May, FRM Hino

1st  Stan Voltemar, WA Hino
2nd  Kara Green, Adtrans Hino
3rd  Ryan Macauley, CMI Hino Adelaide

1st  Joel Ferrante, Prestige Hino
2nd  Bevan Joseph, City Hino
3rd  Shane Curtain, Sci-Fleet Hino