CTU- EE Stud gained Workplace Skills in Komatsu OJT


When in Komatsu, the first thing I thought is that it was a very standard procedure to discuss about the importance of safety. Since the engineering career is full of risk prone work, the slogan “safety first” is always visible. But as our training progressed, I have realized how seriously Komatsu values safety. First thing in the morning, our trainers would ask us if there are any safety concerns before proceeding with the training. We are also well aware of the latest accident reports from komatsu entities from all over the world. This allows us to share our insights and be well informed of the importance of safe work habits, PPE, and improvement of work conditions. It is amazing how safety concerns in komatsu are broken down into specific factors, making us gain a very clear insight about these accidents so that we will not do the same and put ourselves at risk. This culture in komatsu is very new to me. It is not a very pleasant feeling when an accident report is being discussed first thing in the morning. But in the long run, I have learned to appreciate these safety awareness reports since it plays a vital role in providing insight to the komatsu entities from all over the world. There is also a designated place called the safety dojo which demonstrates the effects of various unsafe acts and conditions when workers become very complacent. In the safety dojo, our trainers demonstrate the damages that are caused by common workplace accidents in a controlled environment. It is not only awareness that make us observe safe practices in the workplace, we are also required to practice Kiken Yoshi  (hazard prediction and prevention) before starting our workshop activities. There are different KYs for different objectives, this makes us collaborate as a group and brainstorm how we can go about our objectives safely. This gives us a sense of reassurance that everyone is well aware of the hazards in the workplace. We feel safe in the workshop because we look out for each other’s safety. The Komatsu way promotes safety over speed in the workplace. “Look out for yourselves and for your mates!”, says a poster in our workshop.


The training in Komatsu provides us with a myriad of insights that we haven’t realized in our respective schools. Here in Komatsu, we are taught that it is the responsibility of the engineers to ensure optimal machine operation to ensure customer satisfaction. Starting from the basic tightening module where we are taught about the komatsu standard when it comes to machine assembly, up to the machine overview, we have gained very clear insights on how efficient and functional the Komatsu machines are. There are also many cut-away models of machine parts that help us understand the illustrations in our modules better. It was my first time to see the cross-sectional build of almost each component of the Komatsu machines. This helped me understand the hydraulic system and powertrain better even if I have little to no background about these topics. I was also amazed by the simple plastic models that were present in our training room. All concepts and functions from the main engine to the final machine output are made clear with the materials present. Our trainers would always make us realize the value of working with a team. I went from trying to be the best man in the group to making an effort to collaborate with my team. Since engineering heavy equipment  is not a one man job, we are constantly reminded by our trainers to allow others to contribute to the task. This made me realize that interpersonal skills play a vital role in the field. Collaboration and communication are essential to make the work environment safe and lively. Even though our program was only for 45 days, we were treated the same way as regular Komatsu Global Engineer Trainees.  We were always encouraged to ask 5 whys when having confusions about the module. It felt uncomfortable at first, since we were all used to having lectures where all information are being spoon-fed to us. The trainers here in Komatsu are different, they don’t give answers right away, they guide us to discovering the answers to our questions during the course of our modules. This way of training helped me personally, to be more engaged in our training since my curiosity fuels my desire to learn. I realized that learning how to answer my questions through discovery is an essential skill for Global Engineers. Since in the field, we cannot be fully reliant on our supervisors when we seek for answers because the machine has very many parts and functions. We must learn how to navigate through the Komatsu machines’ shop manuals. Questions like “What happens when the oil filter becomes clogged up? Will there be no lubrication within the engine block?” get the response “What do you think? Let’s see when we disassemble the engine.” It may seem like a very unorthodox way of answering an honest question. But in the end of the workshop activities, we gain very valuable insights and are able to discover the answers even to the most complex questions we have in our minds. From knowing nothing about engines and gears, after my training with Komatsu, I gained a clearer insight about how the machines operate and how to keep them in optimal condition.

Words by Vince Augustine Delfin