Bosch congratulates Top Technician winner and runner up

Left: Matthew Pestridge. Right: Shaun Miller

Published:  07 August, 2018

Bosch has congratulated Top Technician 2018  winner Shaun Miller and runner up Matthew Pestridge on their achievements in the 2018 competition.

Aftermarket’s Top Technician competition is open to independent, fast fit and franchised dealer technicians and is designed to test knowledge and skills.

2018’s winner was Bosch trained technician Shaun Miller from Millers Garage in Newbury, which has been a Bosch Car Service (BCS) garage since 2011. Shaun won the competition by showing his top diagnostic skills in a range of tough fault finding tasks. The win comes following his top performance in the 2017 competition, where he was named as runner-up.

Shaun Miller, Workshop Manager at Millers Garage said: “I am so delighted to be Top Technician 2018. Half a lifetime has gone into this achievement, since I first started in the industry. I have spent my career trying to learn more and so have invested my time in training courses with Bosch, which I know  aided in my diagnostic skills. I wanted to win Top Technician since I first heard about it seven years ago, and now I have. It’s amazing to have this trophy.”

Ian Daly, Workshop Channel Marketer for Bosch Car Service, UK said: “Bosch Car Service garages benefit from access to Bosch training, and we encourage technicians to upskill and continue to stay ahead of the game. Congratulations go to Shaun for doing such a great job in a very difficult competition, we are delighted to have him and Millers Garage as part of the Bosch Car Service network.”

This was not the only success for a BCS garage, as Bosch trained Matthew Pestridge, from D&D Autos in Ashford, Kent, was named runner-up for the 2018 competition.

Matthew Pestridge commented: “I am so pleased to have got as far as I did with the Top Technician competition. I pride myself in my diagnostic skills, which was boosted through the training I received through Bosch. It was these skills that I thought got me as far as I did. While it would have been great to win, I am so proud to have got the runner-up position, especially as it was against tough competition this year.”

Bosch has a dedicated training facilities, Bosch Service Training Centre, in Uxbridge near London, where thousands of automotive technicians attend comprehensive training.

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    Top Technician 2018 champion Shaun Miller is on a roll. Apart from being crowned as the best tech the country, he has diagnostic investigation as a passion as well as a profession. If that’s not enough he is also a new father with plans for the future of the family business, Millers Garage.
        
    Sounds like a busy life eh? Well that’s not the half of it, as Shaun is also one of the brains behind a growing campaign to change attitudes to the fitment of customer supplied parts. Together with Steven Paterson from Krypton Garage and MOT Centre, Shaun has set up 'Say NO to customer supplied parts (UK),’ a Facebook group dedicated to spreading the message of, as you might expect, educating customers not to fit customer
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    A year after setting up, the group has almost 2,000 members, with participation on the rise.

    Steady increase
    Shaun explained the thinking behind it: "It came about as I noticed a steady increase in people asking us to fit their own supplied parts. I didn't want to do it, as at the end of the day, the parts profit is part of our business, Also, the parts they where supplying where normally incorrect or cheap budget parts which we won’t fit anyway.”
        
    Shaun had some experience of the problems fitting customer supplied-parts brought, as like many businesses, there was a time when Millers Garage would do it too: “We used to fit parts provided by customers, everybody did.“
        
    When the business made a stand against the practice, Shaun found that a solid explanation of why they were refusing would come in handy: ”When we started to say no, people wanted to know why.”
        
    So talking to Steven, Shaun discovered one of Steven’s friends lost a lot of money when a part they fitted supplied by a customer went wrong, “Public liability insurance is actually a massive issue with this. If you fitted the part, you are a professional, that means you are saying that the part is fit for purpose. Most public liability insurance will only pay out if there is a paper trail where the company has supplied the part. This way, if they can trace it back to the supplier in cases where something has failed and caused a lawsuit, the manufacturer of the part can officially be questioned about the issue.”

    Education
    Shaun felt this was something people should be talking about more, and the social media realm beckoned: “Not long after I started to look into it,  I was speaking to Steven Paterson about it – he is probably the best diagnostic guru in the country – he said he'd also had enough of it. That is when we set-up the Facebook group, along with admin help from Dave Hill another very well respected technician. Within a few days we had 700 members up and down the country. It is trying to educate the industry to stop fitting customer supplied parts.”
        
    He obviously hit a nerve.
        
    Shaun wants to spread the message that, while a business may believe it is helping a customer by fitting a part they brought in, long-term it is bad for the customer and the sector as a whole: “One you are damaging the industry, as it is a rapid race to the bottom, with everything cheaper and cheaper. Two – If something goes wrong you are going to be in massive trouble for it. Is it worth it?”
        
    It also raises the question of who is your customer: “Mostly those customers who bring their own parts  are not the customers for us, although I have managed to convert one or two – the ones who say "can you fit it?” I explain why not.
      
    “I ask how much they paid for that clutch and I tell them I can get it for maybe £20 more, but they are getting value for it as they have cover. It is that perceived value and that is what really made us start pushing it. We have 2,000 members now.”

    Watch this space
    Not that we want to let the cat out of the bag, but Shaun was keeping quiet about his involvement in the group: “I go to training courses now and people say, 'have you heard of that group?' They start talking about it, but I don’t say anything. It is interesting to hear people mention it. It’s quite cool.“
        
    On plans for the future of the group, Shaun said: “We want to spread the word countrywide and completely end this fast growing trend created by the internet. If garages keep allowing this it will become the norm and we will lose control of our industry. We will keep pushing the group and trying to get as much publicity in the industry as possible.”
        
    The campaign may extend to other platforms as well: “We may look to expand to other networks such as Twitter, Instagram and YouTube as some point in the future. Watch this space.” As for right now, Shaun is looking to the readers of Aftermarket to join the campaign: “We all have a responsibility to protect our profit and the future of our industry so now is your turn to help stop this cancer in our industry.” If you want to join the group go to: http://bit.ly/saynouk

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