Driver shortages and the Driver CPC are the most challenging issues faced by transport managers, according to a survey conducted for the Freight Transport Association (FTA).
The poll of 265 O licence-nominated transport managers, carried out in July this year, highlights the impact these issues are having on their role.
Results are published in the third annual Transport Manager Survey, sponsored by Volvo Trucks, which is available to delegates at FTA’s Transport Manager conference series. It provides a comprehensive overview of transport managers’ assessment of the state of the industry and the role that they play in UK logistics. The results highlight the on-going issues of driver shortage, an ageing workforce, barriers to recruiting young people into the industry, inadequate roadside facilities and congested roads.
Driver recruitment and retention has continued to be a major issue for transport managers this year. Over 46 per cent reported that in recent months they were either unable to fill HGV driver vacancies or had experienced long delays in doing so. A majority of transport managers anticipated a shortage of drivers in the near future, with most blaming retirement as the greatest contributing factor. This is consistent with the number expecting to retire in the next five years.
More than three-quarters of the transport managers surveyed were over 45 years of age (76 per cent), none of the respondents were under the age of 24 and the number under the age of 34 had fallen slightly this year from six per cent to five per cent of the transport manager population. This highlights the continuing need to attract new transport managers to the industry at a younger age. Significantly, 34 per cent of respondents indicated that they are planning to leave the industry in the next five years, increasing sharply from 23 per cent last year.
Other survey highlights:
- The average number of HGVs per transport manager was 43
- The average number of O licences per transport manager was 2
- The most challenging issues were driver shortages and Driver CPC, closely followed by staying within budget
- Overall, driver roadside facilities were considered poor for both overnight parking and 45-minute breaks, with security levels rated poorest, followed by facilities for drivers and availability of parking
- Greater London was overwhelmingly nominated the worst part of the UK for the provision of roadside facilities
- Transport managers said they had experienced a 52 per cent deterioration in journey time reliability on urban city routes, a 41 per cent worsening on motorways and a 37 per cent decline on trunk roads
- Of the 57 per cent of respondents who had Euro VI trucks, on average 22 per cent of their fleets were made up of Euro VI vehicles.
FTA’s Transport Manager conference series is touring the UK from September to December 2015, preparing transport managers and those in charge of road transport fleets for the year ahead. The conferences are sponsored by Microlise and Volvo Trucks with exhibitors Brigade and Hertz Van Rental and media partner Commercial Motor.