The introduction of an additional certificate to drive larger vehicles later this year will leave Crewe’s logistics companies struggling to find qualified staff.
From September 2014, the Certificate of Professional Competence will become a legal requirement for new professional drivers and will dictate the levels of training existing drivers need to undertake over a five year period. As a result, the number of trained drivers available in the UK market will see a sudden decline.
This will be a particular hindrance to companies that use 7.5t vehicles, which will require a driver carrying the certificate to operate them.
In May 2014, Expert Logistics, the UK’s number one two-person home delivery service, launched a driver training academy at its Crewe branch to stay ahead of the curve and ensure local drivers are able to continue working after the changes.
The 12 week course will include a driving assessment, medical exam, customer service training, specialist home delivery training, on the road training, DSA approved 7.5t training and CPC training, a driving test and the Certificate of Professional Competence.
Dave Ashwell, MD of Expert Logistics said:
“The launch of the driver academy enables us to help our existing and new drivers to keep up with changing legislation while also future proofing our business at a time when there is a shortage of drivers in the market.”
The company, which uses self-employed drivers, encourages locals who want to become professionals to take the course and join the team.
Their 360,000sqft sized Crewe depot currently employs 406 permanent staff, working with circa 100 drivers.
It specialises in delivery of white and brown goods, seven days a week for clients, which include ao.com and other market leading manufacturers and retailers.
Expert Logistics hopes to put 24 local drivers through the academy at Crewe and is currently searching for potential candidates.