Apprenticeships in the spotlight as solution to UK LGV driver shortage

TRS Training are marking Apprenticeships Week 2018 with the launch of an awareness raising campaign in association with the Road Haulage Association (RHA), aiming to help logistics and distribution companies address the UK LGV driver shortage.

Over the next few weeks, TRS Training will be delivering a series of presentations to members of the RHA, explaining to numerous employers in the industry how Apprenticeships are the ideal long term solution to tackling the driver shortage crisis.

Industry crisis

There is currently a shortage of approximately 60,000 large good vehicle drivers in the UK, with potential for this to rise to 150,000. The crisis is worsening due to an aging workforce – the average age of drivers is 53, and 13% are over 60. In addition, many foreign drivers who worked in the UK have returned home fuelled by Brexit fears. Another contributing factor is the lack of promotion of the sector to school leavers and other young people as a career option.

Apprenticeships solution

TRS are proposing the Apprenticeship model as a method for addressing this shortfall in driver numbers. Apprenticeships are genuine jobs with an accompanying structured skills programme that equips staff with the skills, knowledge and behaviour required for specific job roles. Employers report many benefits from employing apprentices including increase in productivity, staff loyalty and satisfaction levels.

The LGV Apprenticeship is a 12 month programme that includes LGV theory, driving practice, licence acquisition training, maths and English, and professional skills, knowledge and behaviour.   

Pioneering

The Apprenticeship awareness raising campaign follows the launch of a pioneering programme developed by RHA, Close Brothers Asset Finance and TRS Training Ltd. The partnership sees Close Brothers funding a proportion of wages for 20 apprentices under the age of 24, with TRS Training developing their skills to industry standards. The trainee drivers will complete an LGV Apprenticeship and their final assessment will be undertaken by the RHA.

Time to take action

Director of TRS Training, Kevin Birch, explains the key role Apprenticeships have to play:

“The lack of drivers is having a significant negative impact on the UK road haulage sector and it’s time to take action. But there is no quick fix – this is an issue that requires a strategy and investment if we are to start reversing trends. The Apprenticeship model provides the ideal long term solution because it fosters staff loyalty and commitment as well as providing the necessary skills the industry needs. Employers favour Apprenticeships because training schedules are flexible to meet shift patterns, and drivers are developed in line with organisational culture and practices.”

Investment for future success

Richard Burnett, chief executive of the RHA, underlines the importance of raising awareness of Apprenticeships in the road haulage sector:

“Many of our members are still not fully aware of the benefits of Apprenticeships can offer. Recent government reforms have developed the programme to be more in line with employer needs and with the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy, the time is right for employers in the industry to start considering Apprenticeships as investment for future success. This is why we have chosen to launch this information campaign and put the spotlight on Apprenticeships as a fundamental feature on the road to productivity and growth in the UK’s road haulage sector.”

The TRS Training/RHA Apprenticeships Awareness Campaign launches during Apprenticeship Week and runs until May 1st.

TRS Training

TRS Training, is a Liverpool City Region training provider delivering Apprenticeship services to logistics and manufacturing businesses across the country. Ian Lomas of the Greater Merseyside Learning Providers Federation (GMLPF), of which TRS is a member, highlights how much of an asset the training organisation is to the region:

“TRS Training are a shining example of niche Apprenticeship provision in Liverpool City Region. Their partnership with the RHA and their national client base points to their professionalism and the quality of their services. An inspirational role model for Apprenticeships best practice, TRS are an invaluable ambassador for Liverpool City Region. We’re extremely proud of the part they’re playing in tackling the UK’s LGV driver shortage through Apprenticeships.”

Schools: Register now for free live apprentice broadcasts in Apprenticeship Week

As a partner in the Apprenticeship Support & Knowledge (ASK) for schools project, GMLPF is encouraging schools in Liverpool City Region to register for a series of FREE live broadcasts about Apprenticeships. 

Apprentices speaking about their careers

There is an exciting programme of live broadcasts online during Apprenticeship Week (5th to 9th March) – your students can tune in to hear what current apprentices have to say about their jobs and training and how Apprenticeships are helping them build a career. There are broadcasts from apprentices employed by IBM, the BBC, Balfour Beatty, Aviva, the NHS and many more.

Educating pupils about Apprenticeships

The broadcasts are a simple and ideal way for schools to educate their pupils about Apprenticeships. And it couldn’t be easier to register – simply visit www.amazingapprenticeships.com/live-broadcasts  

Several schools have already registered and their students will be logging on to hear apprentices speak about their experiences.

View full programme of apprentice broadcasts during Apprenticeship Week 5 – 9th March 2018

National Apprenticeships Week 2018 #NAW2018

This year’s National Apprenticeship Week (NAW2018) runs from 5th to 9th March. The focus this year is on how Apprenticeships Work for individuals, employers, local communities and the wider economy. Themes include #WorksForMe – an opportunity for individuals, businesses, organisations and communities to share their own story about how Apprenticeships have worked for them. Another is #10kTalks – aiming to speak to 10,000 people during the week about the benefits of Apprenticeships. GMLPF is contributing to and supporting these themes, and highlighting what activities our members have planned

GMLPF activities include:

Employer presentations

GMLPF CEO Ian Lomas has been asked to speak to employers in Knowsley on 7th March, in conjunction with LCR Apprenticeship Hub, about the benefits of Apprenticeships and the additional benefits that relationships with Apprenticeships providers bring to your business. #10kTalks

The Big Assembly

GMLPF will be supporting the #BigAssembly, the UK’s biggest Careers & Apprenticeships online presentation. We’ll be encouraging involvement from Liverpool City Region schools who have participated in our ASK (Apprenticeships Support & Knowledge in schools) programme to date. We’ll be targeting them through e-bulletins, social media activity and blogs #10kTalks #Big Assembly 

ASK Project

GMLPF and partners are working with St Julie’s, St Francis of Assisi, Fazakerly and Litherland schools during Apprenticeship Week to deliver ASK activities; careers events, assemblies and FAA registrations as part of NAW2018. #10kTalks 

Become an Apprenticeship Champion

GMLPF is working with BL Training to deliver the ASK project. One of our objectives is to develop a network of Apprentice Champions.We’re inviting members to register  as an Apprentice Champion. It is free and all Apprentice Champions can access an array of valuable information on Apprenticeships. GMLPF is hoping Liverpool City Region will have the biggest local network of champions in the country so please take a few minutes out to register.

Apprenticeship Workshops for Members

In response to feedback from members that mental health is both a real issue for learners, and a training and development need for training organisations, GMLPF is establishing a member working group to ascertain the nature and scale of the issue, what needs members have and how GMLPF might take forward development activity on behalf of members. #10kTalks

On Thursday, GMLPF is holding an English and maths exchange workshop facilitated by the ETF to explore relevant issues, share good practice and establish what development needs members have.

GMLPF Member Activities

We are keen to promote activities planned by members as part of a wider calendar of activities. We already know of a number of planned events including:

  • TRS Training Ltd in partnership with The Road Haulage Association are speaking to employers across the country about using Apprenticeships as a vehicle for addressing the UK shortage in LGV Drivers #10kTalks
  • Mode Training launching Made@Mode initiative detailing businesses and students who have achieved success through Apprenticeships at Mode #WorksForMe

Please let pavlina@gmlpf.net know of any planned activities that we can promote via our own website and the LCR Apprenticeship Hub website.

The LCR Apprenticeship Hub has a number of activities planned for NAW 2018. These include employer  Apprenticeship briefings:

Monday 5th March 09:30 – 11:00 Liverpool & Sefton Chamber of Commerce      
Please email to book events@sthelenschamber.com

Tuesday 6th March 07.30 – 09.30 Halton Chamber of Commerce, Holiday Inn Runcorn 
Please email to book   apprenticeshiphub@halton.gov.uk

Tuesday 6th March 09:30 – 11:00 St Helens Chamber of Commerce       
Please email to book events@sthelenschamber.com                   

Wednesday 7th March 07.45 – 09:30 Knowsley Chamber of Commerce, Suites Hotel, Knowsley 
Please email to book apprenticeshiphub@halton.gov.uk

Thursday 8th March 08.00 – 09.30 Wirral Chamber, Wirral
Book here