Training builds business for Power’s Country Express

By: Paul Howell

Small Bendigo transport firm wins state training award.

Training builds business for Power’s Country Express
Winning formula: Power's Country Express owner Damien Power (left) collects the Small Business of the Year Award.


Victorian-based transport firm Power’s Country Express has taken out this year’s Small Business of the Year gong at the Victorian Training Awards.

The award recognises the company’s decision in 2011 to work with specialist training provider JKR Training to upskill managers and staff.

Staff were encouraged to complete a Certificate III in Transport and Logistics, covering subjects such as dangerous goods awareness, manual handling and chain-of-responsibility practices.

"We’ve improved the quality of our work, increased staff and customer retention, and improved our bottom line," owner and manager Damien Power says.

Power’s Country Express, which offers freight services between Bendigo, Castlemaine, Echuca and Melbourne, has now qualified as a finalist in the 2014 Australian Training Awards, to be announced on November 21.

Power says that over 15 years, the business has grown from a husband and wife team to one employing 36 drivers.

"Until recently, there were lots of things that I did within my business that I just did, ad hoc," Power says.

But completing a Diploma of Logistics, along with his wife Emma and two other managers, had helped him "shift up a gear".

"We were able to put changes in motion while we were learning, with the support of trainers who had a very heavy logistics background," he says.

Victorian higher education and skills minister Nick Wakeling says Power’s Country Express epitomises the real business benefits that training can provide.

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