Mar 25

Welcome to the Logistics Job Shop Newsletter; your need-to-know digest and analysis of the events of the past fortnight in the road transport industry.


Around 34% of transport managers intend to quit within five years, a new survey from the FTA has found. The figure, based on data collected from 328 transport managers, is a significant increase compared with last year’s response to the same question, when 23% of the participants stated their intention to leave within the time period.

UK-registered goods vehicles’ share of the international road freight market has fallen to a fresh low of just 13% (2014: 15%, new figures from the DfT have shown. In the year to the end of June, there were 2.3 million journeys recorded from the UK to mainland Europe by powered goods vehicles – up 10% on the previous 12 months. Of these, UK-registered vehicles accounted for just 304,000 trips – down 4% – while foreign registered vehicles’ share surged 12%.

Transport for the North (TfN) is to create a dedicated freight and logistics strategy in a bid to boost freight activity and job opportunities in the north of England. TfN, the body formed of stakeholders and authorities from a selection of northern cities as part of the Government’s Northern Powerhouse agenda, has appointed consultancy firms Mott Macdonald and MDS Transmodal to oversee the development of the freight and logistics strategy.

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DHL Supply Chain has won a two year extension to its NHS Supply Chain contract on the understanding it will deliver another £150m of savings over the period and operate in a more transparent manner. The NHS awarded the two year extension to DHL after an NHS review panel rejected the option of extending the contract by five years.

XPO Logistics (formerly Norbert Dentressangle) has extended the reach of Radius Systems’ supply chain to include daily distribution service to Ireland and Northern Ireland, after it signed a five year contract with the piping manufacturer earlier this year. The process will increase the delivery frequency of pipe fittings from twice weekly to daily. Through its next-day pallet network, XPO has expanded its existing solution to include direct deliveries into Belfast and Dublin within 48 hours.

A two year deal between Saint-Gobain Isover and Bibby Distribution will extend a partnership that has run since October 2010, with new measures to be put in place to further increase safety,

sustainability and efficiency. Saint-Gobain Group’s insulation division Isover will utilise Bibby for a further two years to provide distribution for their sustainable building and technical insulation materials.

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Pall-Ex has appointed Mark Tapper as its group operations director, less than a year after predecessor Kevin Morley was placed in an equivalent position. Tapper’s role incorporates the former UK operations director position, which was held by Morley until earlier this year when he departed just six months after he’d started. Morley was the first senior staff member appointed by former group MD Cris Stephenson, who took the role in June 2014. Stephenson was then replaced by former Palletline MD Kevin Buchanan in November of that year.

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Mar 25

Many of you will be aware that the Transport Select Committee is conducting an inquiry into the skills and workforce planning of the road haulage sector.  In particular the Committee is investigating what action Government has taken to address concerns about a lack of skilled drivers in the Logistics Sector and in turn consider how effective that response has been.

The deadline for written submissions was 19 October 2015,  so we should expect the open sessions to begin in the New Year.

The team at Logistics Job Shop was delighted to learn of the intention to investigate this issue for several reasons.

When the Committee set out the scope of its inquiry it showed a perception of professional drivers which has been and continues to be sadly lacking.  It clearly talks about skilled drivers.

Those of us in the Logistics Sector know this is exactly what our drivers are.  Skilled professionals, frequently responsible on a daily basis for cargos and machinery equivalent in value to an average house.  And we face new challenges on a daily basis

Drivers literally deliver our way of life and they do so, almost always, in an efficient, safe and timely manner.

But being a professional driver isn’t easy.  It is a skilled occupation.  Many people probably have a memory of a few driving lessons at 17 and consequently think that becoming a professional can’t be much harder!  Do they watch the Rugby World Cup and think that because they played at school they could now take on Sam Warburton or Chris Robshaw?  Of course not.  And the perception that ours is anything other than a highly skilled occupation goes against what those of us in the sector know and appreciate.

But most people will accept that when they first passed their test they weren’t half the driver they are now.  they might have been good enough to pass the test, but experience, hours on the road has improved their skills to a much higher level.  If you don’t believe me, try and insure your 18 year old son on your car!  I bet some of you are thinking that a bus pass might be a better option!

But remember that this investigation by the Select Committee of course comes  only two months after the decision by the Department for Innovation and Skills (BIS) not to approve the Apprenticeship in LGV Driving.

Working in recruitment, the team at Logistics Job Shop know that employers are working hard to find good quality drivers.  It our daily job to help them.  If we can help you find your next role, or help you to recruit the right people contact our Sales Team on 0117 9859119 or 07500 864 399 now.