Powering ahead

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					                                                                                           m i n i s t e r ’s a w ards for

                                  Powering ahead
                                             Adelaide region
                                                 Cavpower is the Caterpillar dealer for South Australia and
                                                 has provided equipment and product support services
                                                 to mining, construction, industrial, marine and local
                                                 government customers for more than 35 years.
                                                 ‘Cavpower’s core values—integrity, excellence, respect and
                                                 leadership, underpin our commitment to the development
                                                 and training of Australian Apprentices,’ Managing
                                                 Director Alistair Cavill says.
                                                 ‘It is extremely important to be a leading employer of
                                                 Australian Apprentices, not only for the success of the
                                                 business but also to give young South Australians the
                                                 opportunity to obtain qualifications and a meaningful
                                                 career,’ he says.
Cavpower has 70 trade apprentices and 36 trainees across nine branches in metropolitan and country
South Australia. In addition to the skills shortage trades such as diesel mechanics, boilermakers and
auto electricians, Cavpower employs many trainees in or areas like business administration, finance,
warehouse operations and management.
Flexibility and diversity in their approach to training have paid off, producing a 100 per cent completion
rate for their Australian Apprentices for the past five years.
Cavpower Australian Apprentices are sourced from a range of programs covering school leavers,
mature-age Australian Apprentices, dual trade apprentices and through local community engagement
with technical colleges and Registered Training Organisations.
Cavpower has a dedicated Service Training Team to support Australian Apprentices. Within this team,
the Apprentice Master acts as both trainer, but also as a confidant and mentor.
Our apprentices gain exposure to a wide range of machinery and industries via rotations through various
workshops including specialist areas such as component rebuild, power generation, on highway trucks,
fabrication and hydraulics. Additional to this, we offer rotations to branch locations across the state,’
Executive General Manager of Operations Grant Whitelaw says.
‘In their final year, Cavpower apprentices compete to represent the company against other Caterpillar
dealers for the award of Caterpillar Apprentice of the year. Previous winners of this award have stayed on
with Cavpower and now hold senior positions within the company,’ he says.
With a senior management team consisting of long standing employees with trade backgrounds, the Front
Line Management Program was introduced as a means of up skilling existing supervisors and managers.
Executive General Manager of Marketing Mark Garrard says the impact of this program is astounding.
‘The program has produced immediate results, with a number of final projects being implemented across
Cavpower. The projects have helped drive innovation, efficiency, structure and cost saving initiatives to the
business as a whole,’ Mark says.
Despite the economic downturn, Cavpower remains supportive of the Australian Apprenticeships system
as a key workforce planning initiative.
‘Having come through the business with a trades background, I am passionate about giving young men
and women the opportunity to grow with the business. When the recovery comes, we will be ready. In the
mean time, we continue to support South Australian mining and infrastructure projects with an ongoing
commitment to Australian Apprentices throughout 2009 and beyond,’ Mark explains.
‘Cavpower’s vision is to be the preferred employer in our industry. Winning the Minister’s Awards of
Excellence for Employers of Australian Apprentices suggests we are well on our way to achieving that
vision,’ Human Resources Manager Debbie Lawson says.

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