During the first half of 2019, Manchester-based commercial wheel services company MWheels has been implementing an evolutionary process to change its target. The company has sought to position itself differently within its markets; from a UK wheel distributor campaigning for legislative input on wheel safety, to a European provider of wheels and wheel services designed to make commercial operators more aware of the safety and business implications of fitting and maintaining the most suitable products for their fleets. “The last four months,” chief executive officer Matthew Mardle tells Tyres & Accessories, “have been a big success in following through on the strategies” implemented since the changes in leadership at the helm of the company in January – Mardle was appointed CEO, while company founder John Ellis took up a new position as chairman – and, in the longer term, since the company opened its European operation, MWheels GmbH, in Germany.
The need to increase the volume of training in the tyre industry, helping both to achieve uniformly better standards of service and for businesses to work to retain staff through training and qualifications, has increased, Bridgestone commercial and marketing director John Folliss tells Tyres & Accessories. More reasons for enhancing training programmes include the changes in skill base brought about by both new technology and legislation.
Bridgestone has become the first tyre manufacturer to offer the Society of Operations Engineers’ (SOE) Commercial Tyre Technician Licence to employees of fleets across the UK. The company said the licence would raise standards and improve uniformity in the commercial tyre industry. Attaining the licence requires the completion of three practical assessments and an online test. It aims to regulate the industry and provide best practice with an approved standard that everyone can aspire to achieve. The licence is currently being rolled out, and Bridgestone UK development trainers Phil Thirsk and Paul Turner passed rigorous tests in October to become qualified assessors.