HGV drivers - credit Manpower credit

About 7 per cent of the new HGV drivers are women Photo credit: Manpower

More than 700 individuals are now on their way to starting a new career in HGV driving, thanks to training coordinated by the Driver Academy Group, a consortium formed by Logistics UK, Manpower and HGVC as part of the Department for Education’s initiative to deliver funded Skills Bootcamps across England to help overcome the nation’s driver shortage.

Of those who applied for places to the consortium’s Skills Bootcamps, more than 7 per cent are women (it is estimated that female HGV drivers represent just 2 per cent of those in the profession) and one quarter are from non-white ethnic backgrounds, Logistics UK said.

David Jordan, Logistics UK deputy operations director of services said: “We are overwhelmed with the interest in this training, and most crucially, the makeup of applicants. This is a positive step forward for an industry that has struggled historically to recruit women and those from more diverse backgrounds.

'We are pleased the percentage of female applicants outstrips the industry average, but we recognise more work needs to be done to attract more women. There are so few females in the profession, despite the benefits of the flexible working patterns and controlled hours which professional driving can provide, crucial to fit around childcare and other commitments.

“Whether you are looking to kickstart a brand-new career in HGV driving, or you are an existing driver seeking refresher training or a licence upgrade, do apply for your Bootcamp place now and take this time-limited opportunity to receive part- or fully-funded training.”

The consortium is in the midst of processing a further 4,000 applications to the courses.

Free courses are available for individuals with no experience wishing to start a career in HGV driving. Companies looking to upskill existing drivers can apply for Government funding of 70 per cent of the scheme’s cost. The Skills Bootcamps are part of the Government’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee, helping everyone gain skills for life.

For more information, including details on how to apply, please visit www.hgv.academy

Logistics UK is one of the UK’s leading business groups, representing UK logistics businesses.