Having empty shelves in store around Christmas, the busiest time of the year can be the worst nightmare for any retailer. And imagine the panic it would cause at a home when the kids’ much-awaited Christmas presents don’t arrive in time? These might sound like scenes out of a film but unfortunately, they could be very real for Britain, in the near future.
According to the HGV industry experts, with the gap between the demand and supply of lorry drivers constantly increasing, the situation could result in Christmas deliveries not reaching their expected destination in time. This is why there has been a raise in the delivery drivers’ salaries from the typical pay of between £12.50 and £15 per hour to as high as more than £20 an hour. Not only this, but truckers can even make bonuses of £100 per shift. This means that a lorry driver can actually take home a daily wage of £250 or more. These figures have been released by the recruitment company, Manpower.
According to the managing director of Manpower, this increase in salary is due to the shortage of drivers at a time when they are needed the most. Statistics provided by the Freight Transport Association show that currently, the country is a massive 52,000 HGV drivers short of the desired number. Regrettably, this figure has gone up by 49% compared to last year. In a statement given by Kevin Green, chief executive of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, he said that not receiving the presents and crying children on a Christmas day could be a nightmare scenario for many families.
Experts suggest that to prevent this situation from getting worse and letting the HGV industry suffer more, the government will have to offer better incentives. This would mean attractive pay and benefits, introducing new schemes and more job security, to encourage young drivers to step into the HGV industry and build a promising career.