The UK is currently hanging in limbo between one Prime Minister and another, but at least the weather is getting better. On our roads, drivers and logistics professionals are keeping our country moving, our shelves stocked and orders delivered. The REC’s specialist driver recruiters supply the staff and the skills which transport for some of the UK’s biggest companies, whilst also supporting local businesses and SMEs.
Our recent Drivers webinar heard from a range of experts who spoke about the impact of labour and skill shortages, immigration and planned changes to employment regulations and tax
Labour and skills shortages are a real concern for our sector and these are being exacerbated by the uncertainty around Brexit. However, other factors also contribute and are specific to the drivers sector. Mick Skerrett from Manpower UK spoke about the ending of acquired or ‘Grandfather’ rights for the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (DCPC) from September 2019. This will impact on many older workers. Members also raised the issue of insurance companies often being unwilling to insure young and new drivers which was preventing these workers from being able to break into the sector. The REC will continue to engage with government and other stakeholders to ensure the development of proper policies to tackle the shortage of skilled drivers.
Data from REC/KPMG’s Report on Jobs highlights the labour market being more favourable to temporary workers, as temporary billings growth remained above permanent worker placements for the first quarter of the year. Both however remain below their peak of 2014/15. Despite this, both temporary and permanent vacancies remain high with many positions in the drivers, logistics and industrial sectors going unfilled.
End clients are already flagging changes to IR35 with their recruitment partners. The roll out of IR35 in the private sector is due to come into effect in April 2020. Whilst we don’t yet have finalised legislation and are calling for a further delay, the proposed timetable is tight so speaking to your clients and proper preparation now is key. In addition, legislation from the government’s Good Work Plan will impact on recruiters with the introduction of a key information document before sign-up, the ending of Swedish Derogation contracts and changing the holiday pay reference period (from 12 to 52 weeks) from April 2020.
Finally, if you believe your company has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to developing its staff, social responsibility, or is just fantastic to work for then you should consider entering the 2019 IRP Awards.