Industry stalwart celebrates 20-year milestone

JOST Australia has congratulated one of its long-serving and well respected employees, Bob Martin, on notching up 20 years of service.

Martin joined JOST in August 2001 as the company’s Brisbane branch manager. A role he maintained for 18 years before moving into his current position as national training manager.

He was also a long-serving member of Commercial Vehicle Industry Association of Queensland (CVIAQ), where he was board director for 12 years and CVIAQ president for seven years – before the association morphed into the Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia (HVIA) in 2016.

After leaving school when he was 15, Martin secured an apprenticeship as a motor mechanic, working in a small country garage. Upon completing his apprenticeship, he spent several years in new car dealerships in Brisbane before switching to the bigger stuff.

The year was 1989 when Martin was offered a job as a truck driver/mechanic, driving a rigid tipper and towing a three-axle dog.

But a work injury put him on the sidelines. He was off work for three months and had to broaden the scope so he could get back to work.

His next career move – becoming a TAFE tutor in 1992, before getting into Griffith University as a mature age student and graduating with a bachelor’s degree in adult and vocational teaching in 1995.

That same year he joined BPW Transpec in a technical sales role, while continuing his studies and obtaining a Diploma of Management, before joining JOST six year later in 2001.

“I got out of car mechanics and drove trucks for a while, then I got involved in TAFE with a view to becoming a TAFE teacher. That was back at a time when the government wasn’t putting any money into funding TAFE. I got out of that and got a job in the transport industry with BPW and that’s where my career in the heavy transport industry began,” Martin said.

“I think it’s a rewarding industry. There are a lot of good people involved. It’s the people you meet and the friendships you make with those people along the way. There have also been a lot of challenges along the way too, which I enjoy.”

Throughout his career, he’s seen many major changes to the industry. From coming on board at around the same time as B-doubles were hitting the road to the introduction of PBS, and major advances in technology – from the launch of ABS to EBS and stability control.

“At JOST, we’re starting to get more and more technology into our fifth wheel couplings and our pin style couplings too,” Martin added.

As well as being so knowledgeable about the industry, Martin has also become well known for his generosity, including joining committees and associations, and helping others during crisis – including the 2011 Brisbane floods, where he assisted several of JOST’s customers in the clean up after the deluge.

Around 18 months ago, having returned to TAFE part-time, Martin graduated with a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, adding to the knowledge and expertise he brings to his current role at JOST.

With 20 years at JOST under his belt, Martin is looking forward to many more. “It’s always great to have a good quality product to sell and a good employer. The product pretty much sells itself – we just need to back that up with good quality service and support, which JOST has always been renowned for.”

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