The challenges of the past two years have brought on a worsened driver-shortage for the transport industry in Europe. With Bertschi's focus on intermodal rail transport, our supply chains remain strong despite the difficulties.
However, truck drivers remain to be an essential part of our supply chains, particularly for the first and last leg of the transport, and in loading and unloading our customers’ products. Well trained and professional drivers are critical for Bertschi, and the severity of the Europe-wide driver shortage does pose its challenges. Our driver recruitment and training process, our very own Driver Academy, and training young apprentices, are examples of ways we address these.
Top-Notch Driver Selection and Training
Bertschi operates its own in-house driver selection and training process, thus giving us an advantage in recruiting quickly and ensuring highly skilled drivers.
Professional Bertschi drivers are regularly trained to the highest levels of safety compliance. Our annual driver training days ensure this. Led by our 7 professional Behavior Based Safety Trainers, Bertschi drivers go through theoretical lectures and practical workshops, trained to put safety as a top priority in the business.
This demanding and costly process has proven to be worth it, as it results in a robust pool of drivers that are trained to the Bertschi standard.
Bertschi Behavioral Based Safety (BBS) trainer Evi delivering theoretical training at the headquarters in Dürrenäsch.
Read More: Truck Bowling and Social Distancing – 2020 Driver Training Days
The Bertschi Driver Academy in Ploiești, Romania
In June 2017, as a result of the driver-shortage which was already prominent at the time, the Bertschi Driver Academy was established at the Ploiești terminal in Romania. Here, our professional Bertschi instructors train the students in the Academy until they become fully-fledged professional road specialists and Bertschi drivers.
Possible candidates may be novice drivers, holders of professional drivers’ licenses, or talented young people wishing to pursue a career as a professional driver. For the latter, our company is willing to cover the costs of driving school, ADR certification, etc. if they are unable to do so themselves.
After six months at the Bertschi Driver Academy, student drivers complete the usual training provided to all Bertschi drivers at our headquarters in Switzerland. Once their training is complete, and the new drivers meet the necessary professional requirements, they take responsibility for their trucks and start with their transport activities all over Europe, continuing to attain the regular annual training aforementioned.
Bertschi Driver Academy Romania.
Training the Youth: Swiss Driver Apprentices
In certain countries, apprenticeships are a common form of post-compulsory education and training. The Bertschi apprenticeship for Road Transport Specialists (Strassentransportfachmann/-frau) is a great start to a young person’s career as a professional driver with us.
In Switzerland, young students (usually between ages 15 to 19) start their apprenticeship in the workshop, getting to know the specialties of the various dry bulk and liquids sectors. They begin driving with a driver's license category B and attend vocational school one day per week. The apprenticeship includes company courses for load securing and hazardous goods, and a dedicated mentor. Eventually, they obtain their category C driver's license, and in the final year, carry out their work independently with their very own Bertschi truck.
Bertschi driver apprentice Rouven and his mentor Fiona (top), and with his truck at a customer site (bottom).