The logistics and supply chain industry in 2020
What will the future of HGV driving look like over the next 12 months?GENDER EQUALITYIn the logistics and supply chain industry, many argue there is a lack of gender equality. There are various factors as to why this could be. Research shows, in the industry, only 25% of senior managers or directors are women. While there are 315,000 lorry drivers registered in the UK, only 2,200 of those are female. 15% of those are between ages 21-25, showing already more women have interest in getting behind the wheel.Following a poll on twitter asking females users if they would feel ready to drive a 44-tonne truck, in which over 79% said yes. FTA skills policy development manager Sally Gilson spoke on the matter:“These figures are encouraging as it is essential that more women are recruited – currently only one per cent of HGV drivers in the UK are female. We believe that one of the biggest barriers for would-be truck drivers is the cost of gaining a licence and training – around £3,000. FTA has been calling on Government to provide a suitable loan system.”DRIVER RECRUITMENT AND RETENTIONDriver recruitment and retention is still the biggest concern for hauliers, according to the Road Haulage Association’s latest Cost Movement Report.The report, which gathers information from members and sets out to define industry trends, confirms fears that the ever increasing HGV driver shortage continues to hit firms hard.Operators blame Brexit uncertainty for widening the gap to around 60,000 and say they’re worried about controversial clean air zones which will see council chiefs slapping up to £100 daily charges on non-Euro VI trucks.E-CMR PROTOCOLThe UK has ratified the e-CMR protocol, which allows national and international transports from and to the United Kingdom to be done with digital consignment notes.Signing the e-CMR protocol has been on the agenda in the UK for quite some time. After a successful international pilot project with the e-CMR platform TransFollow, the West Yorkshire based carrier Brian Yeardley Continental under the supervision of the UK Ministry of Transport and several associations such as the Freight Transport Association, the ratification was only a question of time.By agreeing to the protocol in December 2019, the UK allows the use of e-CMRs as a fully accepted alternative to paper consignment notes for national and international transports. With the entire logistics sector constantly moving forward, the digitalisation of the consignment note has been long overdue.