Plant hire is,it has to be said , an extraordinary business . It began out of a real need to make the best use of what was available , it never seemed to develop any particular career structure , instead being driven by people who gained ' Hands on ' experience and then it seems they progressed thro' various levels until they reached the level just above their competence ! Anyone in the industry will know of MDs Directors and other senior personnel who are just not able enough,really, to carry out the job they are supposed to .
Fairly recently there have been attempts to create training and development pathways thro the industry , with a view to getting some sort of qualification system , this works very well for the technical end of the game , plant hire managers are still , in the main,untrained in any specific skill,the main requirement being able to juggle any number of jobs and retain in memory a vast amount of information for instant recall , coupled with the ability to think of novel , believable excuses at a seconds notice ( bullsh*t beats brains anyday) .
In the early 1970s plant hire , in UK , was probably at its best.Big construction jobs were starting all over the country , (and overseas ) , gas pipelines were being built , times were good .Despite the fact that companies often had large in house fleets hire companies grew and expanded , and , a decent rate of return could be made , it was worth doing the job , and , I think it was the last time sales managers would stick to the rate list,with few exemptions . Unfortunately this is the very thing that attracts the quick profit merchants who thought that the easy way to making money was to provide the same equipment but just do it cheaper, the new sort of hire rep. had only one shot in his locker and that was "I'll do it cheaper..." , and so the rot started to set in and has continued ever since .