Nappanee, Indiana

By day, Alex Kollman works as a maintenance technician at the Aluminum Trailer Company. By nights and weekends, he spends time with his family – his wife and two daughters. 

In his role, Alex sees the bigger picture – his team’s ability to have a greater impact on his company and his community. Alex said,

“I am trying to push us in a direction we have not been before. While it may be tough at first to change the ways that things have been done in the past, I know that the end result will be worth it. I believe that my team and myself can impact everyone here – from our executive team to our customers buying the products that we manufacture.”

Alex Kollman, thank you for everything you do! Your genuine drive to better your company and your community is refreshing.

How did you get started in maintenance?

I have grown up and still reside in northern Indiana. I started out working at a local lumber yard out of high school and went to another lumber yard for a short time after that before landing my first maintenance position at a farm not far from my childhood home.

My first job in maintenance started out in a large poultry farm close to my home. Servicing manure belt systems, water systems and feeding systems to name a few. I went from there to my current employer and started welding on the production line. My short time on a weld table led to an opening in the maintenance department that I applied for and eventually got on with.

I love being in the maintenance field because it is always something new. No matter who you are working with inside or out of your organization you always have something you can learn from who you meet and work with. Everyone has their own way of completing a task and you can almost always have a takeaway from that.

What is one of your proudest accomplishments?

Most of my career achievements have been in the last couple of years here at Aluminum Trailer Company. When I was brought on to the maintenance team here, we were a 3 person team servicing 2 facilities and 150+/- employees.

I started out being a maintenance tech on the floor and learning the machines and processes we use here along with helping with projects and filling in when needed. I was then placed in my own plant and would manage the maintenance tasks and projects for that building.

Since then we have constantly grown in the organization and our department. Currently I am the strategic operations maintenance technician and have helped to implement a CMMS system into the organization, and from that I have been developing a PM and AM process to turn our historically reactive maintenance path into a preventative one. Putting a CMMS into a company that has never used one before has been a very rewarding task for our company and our team.

What is one thing you wish people knew about your job?

I wish others understood what goes on behind the scenes in a maintenance department. My short experience in this field (6-7years) has primarily been on a smaller team in both organizations and it can be stressful at times, we are providing a service to the entire organization and get pulled all directions multiple times a day. A maintenance position is rewarding but can also have a lot of stress attached to it.

Thank you, Alex!