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Driver shortages expected to affect logistics businesses

The UK’s logistics sector is the backbone of British trade, employing over 2.7 million people and adding £124 billion to the economy. However, a recent report by the FTA in conjunction with Santander Corporate and Commercial has revealed that skills shortages are already impacting the sector and will continue to affect business growth.

The 2019 Logistics report polled over 500 freight and logistics professionals to provide an insight into the health of the industry. Worryingly, the report stated that 15% of HGV driver vacancies will remain unfilled and a further 36% of vacancies will experience long delays in finding the right candidate.

It’s also anticipated that the skills shortage will have an impact on other areas of the logistics industry including; van drivers, warehouse staff, fitters, technicians and mechanics. With concerns over Brexit and an ageing workforce - the average age of a HGV driver is 48 - the FTA and Santander Corporate and Commercial have committed to working closely with the logistics sector in order to recruit the staff they desperately need.

The FTA is calling for unused Apprenticeship Levy funds to be funnelled into more flexible training programmes and for adjustments to the Future Immigration White Paper that will allow non-UK logistic workers into the UK after Brexit.

The report also highlighted the need for investment in the UK’s transport and logistics infrastructure to boost its appeal to international investors and to boost business growth.

Reference: CommercialFleet