Inspired to give employees the skills to move ahead and confront the demand for an available workforce, contractor Allan Myers is launching a new three-year mission called Stepping Up. A fundamental tool of Stepping Up is the Myers Mobile Training Center, the result of a collaborative effort between Allan Myers, Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) and Volvo Financial Services (VFS).
Based in Worcester, Pennsylvania, Allan Myers is a heavy civil construction and materials company with over 20 locations in the Mid-Atlantic and 2,000 employees. It consistently ranks among the top transportation contractors in the region and is recognized for its outstanding safety record and performance.
"When we look to the future, one of the biggest challenges we see is having trained craft professionals. With the United States' renewed focus on infrastructure, the work is going to be available, but the problem is having a trained workforce – specifically heavy equipment operators, truck drivers and carpenters," said Bob Capps, director of craft development for Allan Myers.
A. Ross Myers, chairman and CEO of Allan Myers, explained how Stepping Up fits into the company's culture.
"We have ambitious plans that will require talented people across the organization – more operators, field managers, superintendents, safety professionals and everything in between. We believe that the best people in the industry already work here and our goal is to fill the new seats through training and promoting within."
The Myers Mobile Training Center is a custom 38-foot Featherlite trailer outfitted with two Volvo Advanced Training Simulators for excavator, wheel loader and articulated hauler operations.
Allan Myers researched training simulators across all major equipment manufacturers and found the Volvo CE simulators most realistic.
"The Volvo simulators have the best motion base to really give you the feeling that you are in a machine," Capps said. "We put some really experienced operators in those seats and they were truly surprised at how realistic it felt. The simulators put you into the situations you will encounter with a real machine."
With lifelike 3D graphics coupled with an electrically controlled full-motion platform, operators feel precisely how the machine will react in various situations, allowing training in even the toughest environments and most stressful situations.
Volvo CE has over 350 training simulators in use globally. It was its extensive experience with training simulators and a demo by Allan Myers' senior management that cemented the contractor's decision.
Allan Myers is one of a select few private contractors in the United States to bring this caliber of simulator training to their operators in a mobile format. The mobile training centre is a substantial investment for the company, and to handle this unique finance need, it turned to the financial expertise of VFS, which it has trusted to finance equipment purchases.
"While the centre was an atypical finance item, its purpose exemplifies what Allan Myers stands for and VFS stands behind," said Matt Deloglos, regional sales manager of VFS. "We finance excavators, haulers and wheel loaders for Allan Myers, so it made sense for us to help the company ensure that it has the best trained operators to make it more efficient and safer."