NWH Addresses Skills Shortage With Apprenticeship Scheme

The chief executive of the Road Haulage Association, Richard Burnett, has raised concerns about the shortage of UK hauliers. He argues that the industry needs to tackle this problem head on, by actively recruiting more drivers into the sector and also improving the quality of existing drivers. One UK company that is willing to take on the challenge is the NWP Group; they have recently invested half a million pounds into a unique apprenticeship scheme, which offers a fantastic opportunity to young people across the country.
Increasing the number of UK hauliers will benefit the national economy and this scheme plans to stringently train apprentices in order to produce skilled drivers for the UK workforce.

Who is the NWH Group?

The NWH Group began by providing services for the quarry industry. It now offers commercial and industrial waste collection across Scotland, operating six recycling centres and one landfill site. The company is a family concern and prides itself on offering great employment opportunities.

The Vision

The group has invested an impressive £500,000 into their own HGV driver apprenticeship scheme, which is set to run for at least the next five years. Over those five years the company hopes to train 80 HGV drivers.

The scheme is open to 18 to 24-year olds who have had a driving licence for two years. Having professional driving experience is a bonus, but not necessary – it is all about providing employment opportunities to young people.

The scheme: • Helps drivers gain a Class 2 HGV licence • Provides an opportunity to gain a full-time job after completion in one of their own areas: driving road sweepers, concrete trucks, skips, tippers and more

The programme is one year long and includes driving instruction and development, placing a trainee alongside an experienced mentor. However, it also allows apprentices to experience various sectors of the industry, including finance, administration and accounts. The hope is that this will help the trainees understand the industry more thoroughly and allow them to perform better in their jobs when they become fully qualified UK hauliers.

Who is Benefitting?

The first intake of apprentices included young people with a variety of previous experience. Some had driven professionally, for example, as supermarket delivery drivers or van drivers and were looking to develop their careers. Others had not been involved in the transport industry at all previously and had been doing odd jobs here and there. All of those in the first intake see the NWH apprenticeship as a way of building on previous skills and experience to begin new careers as UK hauliers and contributing to the industry as highly trained, quality drivers.

If you want to find out more about this scheme, simply visit nwhgroup.co.uk/careers. Why not let an interested friend or family member know about this opportunity? Applications are open now for the next intake of the Driver Academy.

Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Haulage Exchange provides services for matching UK hauliers with available haulage jobs. Over 5,400 member companies are networked together through the Exchange to fill empty capacity, get new clients and form long-lasting business relationships.

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