CAMBRIDGE, Ont. – Some international trucking executives got a polite and educational welcome to Canada this week when they visited some of Ontario’s best and brightest carriers.
Trucking HR Canada invited its international guests and panelists of its upcoming Women with Drive Summit to get acquainted with the Canadian trucking industry by visiting a number of Canadian carriers and see how things are done here.
Heather Jones, one of the international speakers at this year’s Women with Drive Summit.
“This year attendees of the Women with Drive Summit will be fortunate enough to hear from leading ladies around the world and we thought it would be a great idea to invite them early and show them the local facilities in the GTA and how they compare to what they have back home,” Anita Gara of Trucking HR Canada explained.
One of the four carriers the organization’s international guests visited this week was Challenger Motor Freight in Cambridge, Ontario.
To date, Challenger has more than 1,300 trucks and it is one of the most recognizable names in Canadian trucking.
Geoff Topping, the senior director of human resources at Challenger, said the company was grateful for the opportunity to host Trucking HR Canada’s guests.
“We like working with Trucking HR Canada on various things,” he said. “But we’re very proud of our facility and proud of our people and we’re proud of everything we do here at Challenger. So two things we’d like to do (today) is share what we and maybe try to pick up tips from them.”
The two international guests Challenger hosted at its enormous 126,000 sq-ft facility were Heather Jones, the director and owner of Success Transport in Western Australia and Meryn Morrison, the health and safety compliance manager of Regal Haulage in New Zealand.
Both Jones and Morrison got to sit with senior Challenger employees, swap and share ideas, and to take a tour of the entire facility, where they learned about all of challenger’s different departments, like dispatch and training.
Jones said that the tour was interesting to her and that she especially like the driver accommodations at the facility.
“Challenger has a lot of facilities for their drivers that most companies in Australia don’t have,” she said. “Like driver rooms, a cafeteria, plus a fabulous workshop area and truck wash area.”
Morrison added that this was one of the biggest trucking facilities she’s ever seen. She said her favorite part of the tour was how all departments were segregated.
“My favorite part was the organization of the driver area and how the special and heavy commodities was separated,” she said. “In a lot of our companies (in New Zealand) they’re all together and you have to be a jack of all trades so to have them specialized, there must be a lot of efficiencies.”
Morrison added that she is looking forward to the Women with Drive Summit that is set to take place on March 2 and that she thinks the day will create a better global perspective of the trucking industry for all in attendance.
“It’s always good to see someone else’s perspectives,” she said. “We have a lot of the same issues, like driver recruitment, so getting those strategies together on how to attract more women into our industry has got to be helpful.”
You can learn more about the Women with Drive Summit by clicking here.