Military personnel could be key in relieving UK driver shortage
The 21st – 27th June is Armed Forces Week, a chance for the nation to show support for the men and women who make up the Armed Forces community: from currently serving troops to Service families, veterans and cadets.
Our partnership with Veterans into Logistics, a non-profit organisation that aims to help ex-military personnel gain meaningful employment, highlights the many training opportunities available for those with transferrable skills gained from military experience.
In our previous blog we discussed the growing crisis of the HGV driver shortage and the urgency in which new drivers are needed.
The shortage has been attributed to a combination of factors including Brexit, which led to an exodus of EU-based drivers, tax changes, and a lack of driver tests during the pandemic preventing newcomers from joining the workforce.
Last week, James Bielby, CEO of the Federation of Wholesale Distributors, said the situation has become so extreme that he recommends the government having army trucks on standby to ensure enough vehicles and drivers are available to distribute food.
Mr Bielby said:
‘The situation has reached crisis point and it is likely to get worse as more hospitality venues open and demand increases. The Government needs to act very quickly.
We are concerned enough to suggest that the Government considers having Army trucks on standby to ensure there are enough vehicles and drivers to distribute food.’
As well as utilising current army personnel, now may be the perfect time for veterans to retrain, further their skills, and start their journey into an exciting new career path with the help of System Group.
Veterans don’t need to have a Driver CPC card or commercial HGV driving experience to get started. System Group and Veterans into Logistics will support learners through their CPC Module 2 & 4 and/or periodic training with in-house mentoring until they are comfortable driving a HGV.
Drivers will be positioned into roles that give them the experience and confidence that they need as part of their resettlement and in order to progress into their new careers.
Speaking to The Loadstar, an ex-Royal Navy supply officer said there was a “huge premium” associated with drivers with a military background.
“Hiring drivers with a military background will always be a more attractive proposition. I work with more than 40 other drivers and most of them are ex-military,” he said. “The value they offer is that not only are they trained to drive, but also to deal with the unexpected.”