Toyota Material Handling Australia (TMHA) has inducted the latest intake of apprentice forklift technicians it believes will provide it with a solid skills support base well into the future.
The seven apprentices, accompanied by mentors from their respective TMHA branches around the country, were inducted at TMHA's Sydney headquarters in late April.
TMHA national technical advisor and trainer Gerry Larney said it received well over 500 applications from around the country in this years' apprentice recruitment drive.
"At TMHA we regard the apprentice program as a real investment in our future, as today's apprentices are tomorrow's technicians," Mr Larney said.
"The latest intake has significantly increased the number of apprentices currently training in the TMHA network around the country."
As part of their induction the apprentices met with members of the senior TMHA management team, including president and CEO Toshi Nakazawa and vice-president and COO Steve Takacs, and were given a tour of the TMHA Sydney branch.
They also received presentations on Toyota values, company policies and expectations, safety procedures and the history of Toyota before being presented with their tools of trade.
Mr Takacs, who began his career as a forklift technician, said TMHA was at the forefront of forklift technician training in Australia and pioneered specialist TAFE training for Australia's forklift technicians.
"We instigated the annual apprentice intake over a decade ago to help ensure we have a strong skills base to support our business," Mr Takacs said.
"Our customers reap the benefits by having a skilled team of technicians ready to provide high-quality back-up for the diverse range of Toyota material handling equipment we provide via our national branch network."
TMHA also holds an annual national skills contest aimed at keeping its technicians and apprentices at the cutting-edge of industry standards.