John Deere Apprentice of the year awards
A total of 48 young service technicians have formally graduated from the latest John Deere Ag Tech, Parts Tech and Turf Tech advanced apprenticeship programmes, run in partnership with national training provider ProVQ.
John Deere hosted its annual apprentice graduation ceremony earlier this year in Germany, with the apprentices visiting the company’s cab factory and European Parts Distribution Centre in Bruchsal before being presented with their awards at the John Deere Forum in Mannheim.
John Deere’s three-year Ag Tech and Turf Tech and two-year Parts Tech apprenticeships lead to IMI Level 2 & 3 Diplomas in Landbased Engineering and Vehicle Parts Competence, and registration at LTA Intermediate level in the industry’s Landbased Training Accreditation scheme. In subsequent years qualified technicians undergo further education and adult training within the John Deere University programme, on a career path that can ultimately lead to the highest possible LTA Master Technician accreditation.
Now in its 26th year, Ag Tech was the first such scheme to be introduced in the UK and won a National Training Award at the end of 1997, the only one ever made to an agricultural machinery apprenticeship programme. Since the first programme started in 1992, well over 700 apprentices have graduated through the three main schemes and are now working in the company’s nationwide dealer network.
Allan Cochran took over the role of John Deere Limited branch training manager for the UK & Ireland from his predecessor Richard Halsall at the beginning of March, and works closely with training partner ProVQ on the John Deere apprenticeship programmes.
Allan joined the company in 1997 as a management trainee after completing an HND in mechanisation, planning and business management at SAC Auchincruive. His subsequent responsibilities have included sales demonstrator instructor for tractors, service training instructor, area manager product support for Scotland and then Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, and product specialist for tractors and loaders.
In 2005 Allan was promoted to technical services manager and then senior product support specialist, and from 2009 he was technical support specialist for the tractor dealer technical assistance centre (DTAC) system and a harvesting customer support specialist.
John Deere’s 2017 Ag Tech, Parts Tech and Turf Tech graduate apprentices are pictured at the John Deere Forum in Mannheim, Germany. (Steven Scott of HRN Tractors,Insch depot can be seen on the second row, third from the right & Ross Leathley of HRN Tractors, Balbeggie is the last person on the second row).