Skills shortages affecting the whole logistics industry

13 October 2021

The headlines in recent weeks have focused mainly on the lack of lorry drivers but information released by Logistics UK suggests that similar problems are affecting other parts of the sector.

Its September 2021 Performance Tracker confirms that almost all (96%) UK logistics businesses are reporting problems recruiting drivers of heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).

However, the tracker also shows that more than 13% of businesses are now reporting severe to very severe problems recruiting warehouse staff – compared to September 2020, when zero respondents reported facing recruitment challenges of that scale.

A quarter (24.5%) of respondents also report severe or very severe problems recruiting van drivers; once again, zero respondents reported facing such severe difficulties in September 2020.

Elizabeth de Jong, Policy Director at Logistics UK, has highlighted that businesses are also facing challenges recruiting for vital roles such as van drivers, fitters, mechanics, technicians, forklift drivers and transport managers.

“While we are pleased to see logistics businesses are taking steps to attract and retain HGV drivers – through measures such as pay increases, recruitment drives, and the introduction of apprenticeship and upskilling training schemes – we are concerned that some supply chain disruption will continue until these crucial roles are filled,” she said.

The number of transport/logistics/warehouse online job adverts was double the same period last year, according to Office for National Statistics (ONS) vacancies data (provided by the online job search engine, Adzuna) for 10 September 2021.

The Performance Tracker monitors the performance of the logistics industry each quarter with the latest edition available – here.