Whether we like it or not, employers are now looking to employ individuals who have a range of skills. From the employers perspective, it makes perfect sense – they can utilize these workers where-ever the need is greatest on any given day. Multi-skilled workers can also help to reduce the number of employees a business requires. In our industry, we are seeing more and more employers looking for heavy equipment operators who also have a commercial drivers license.
The logic there is fairly simple – these employers have heavy equipment machinery such as bulldozers, front-end loaders or backhoes, for example, and a tractor-trailer to transport them to a worksite. Rather than employing a bulldozer operator, loader operator, backhoe operator and truck driver; having an operator/driver who can operate all four will cut costs. In our current economy, if that employer is struggling to find contracts, then the last thing they need is operators sitting around waiting for work, especially when one operator is all they need.
Of course, that’s an extreme example, however, I think you can see the point I am making. By employing multi-skilled operators, they save money whilst completing the same amount of work. This keeps the business afloat while they wait for more opportunities. For heavy equipment operators, the opportunities are endless. Add a commercial drivers license to your repertoire and you’ll open up far more opportunities for employment.
To add a CDL to your qualification base only takes five weeks. You may find you can complete a basic course in three weeks if you already have a sound knowledge of the road rules and can pass the written tests for a heavy equipment permit. Being able to transport your own heavy equipment from worksite to worksite offers an employer far more flexibility so it’ll make you far more valuable to your employer. If you’re currently employed as a heavy equipment operator, ask your employer if truck driver training would help the business, and your future – you may be surprised at the answer, they may even help to fund your training.