Motor Grader Operation: Skill Earned by Training Despite Machine Control
These days, most of the contractors or construction companies hire or employ advanced motor grader equipped with intelligent features and smart machine controls as they offer various new ways to the operators to operate the equipment more efficiently and reduce operator’s difficulties. Well, yes, to some extent machine control technology reduces the need of the contractors to find the right operators and then train them as even less-experienced operators are able to work easily and achieve grade characteristics similar to those with more field experience; however, it is the experienced and skilled motor grader operators that help in performing all the tasks at the jobsite with ease and efficiency. Thus, it always makes sense to have an operator that is well-trained and has years of experience to bank upon. As for the motor grader operators, it is very important for them to learn the operating skills through training and not just depend on the machine controls only.
Benefits of experienced, skilled and trained motor grader operators
The host of benefits include...
1. Trained motor grader operators can operate the machine independently, safely and responsibly.
2. They are well aware of the pre-checks and start-up checks to be conducted while operating the equipment.
3. They know very well about various functions and use of the equipment and its various attachments.
4. Experienced and skilled motor grader operators also know about how to operate graders in the most challenging working environments so as to get best results.
5. They not only know about operating the equipment but are also aware about how to maintain, troubleshoot and store the equipment.
6. They know about the workplace safety requirements and procedures very well.
7. They are well aware of the new technologies. Since new technologies are continuously coming up and introduced in the heavy machinery like motor graders, experienced and trained motor grader operators are abreast about such innovations and up-gradations in the field.
8. The trained motor grader operators have good communication skills which help them in communicating and directing their co-workers to perform the relevant tasks.
9. The trained operators also possess physical strength and stamina which help them in skilfully handling the equipment for long hours.
10. Trained motor grader operators also know about good work ethics clearly.
11. While it is not a mandate that motor grader operators should have the necessary certificate as their experience is more important, however, most of the trained motor grader operators have the necessary certifications which is always good. It proves that they have full understanding of the equipment and the industry and are up-to-date with the latest technologies and techniques.
That said, the point to be noted here is that there aren’t enough skilled and trained motor grader operators in the market. In fact, most of the times, the motor grader operator are novice without having any formal training. Also, there is lack of heavy equipment training and relating institutes in India at the present. Even if there are few government-backed institutes, then the training that the students get at these institutes is inadequate to meet the standards of work and efficiency that the industry demands. Also, in these institutes, only theoretical training is given and practical training is lacking.
Private players like MCE’s initiative
With a growing skills gap in the country and most of the experienced motor grader operators aging out, it’s becoming harder for the contractors and construction companies to find skilled operators to operate their motor graders. Realising this growing need for operator training for heavy equipment like motor graders, various private heavy construction equipment manufacturers in the country are coming up to bridge the skill gap by establishing their own training centres in various parts of the country in addition to introducing various certification courses for operator training. One such manufacturing giant in India is Mahindra Construction Equipment (MCE).
MCE has 6 regional training centres across the country which imparts expertise and provides training on the below mentioned aspects...
1. Equipment operation
2. Daily, weekly and monthly equipment maintenance
3. Safety parameters
Also, adequate practical training is provided here to the students. Thus, through this initiative, MCE aims to develop and enhance skills of the heavy equipment operators like motor grader operators with its expertise. What more? MCE has also tied up with an authorised institution.
Apart from this, if you buy any equipment from MCE, then as part of its post-sales services, the company offers few days’ dedicated training for the operators, in which they are personally trained on various features of the machines by professional trainers.
In a nutshell
The main task of motor grader operators includes driving and controlling the equipment safely and as per schedule. They also should be able to operate various attachments as applicable and should know their respective functions. Motor grader operators are also held responsible for the maintenance of the equipment. Apart from this, motor grader operators should also be able to identify defects and malfunctioning of the equipment and in such a case, they are required to take immediate action in terms of lodging complaints and getting the defects fixed. Well, all these tasks can only be performed well by trained and experienced motor grader operators. Hence, it is always advised to have trained motor grader operators at the jobsite.
Further, given the fact that motor graders are very expensive and highly technical equipment, it is obvious that they need trained and experienced operators who have the expertise in using the advanced machine controls in the equipment and generate better results and increase the ROI in the long run.
Thus, there is no doubt that for the contractors to win more and more big projects, it is required that they employ motor graders with advanced machine control technology. However, it is equally important that they hire motor grader operators who are skilled, trained and experienced to make the best use of the advanced technology and machine controls in the equipment.