It’s been long talked about that there is a shortage of drivers in the economy – and with online shopping growing in popularity, it is really no shock that by 2020 there will be a national demand for 150,000 drivers. So, what are logistics companies to do?

We’ve assessed the top few reasons as to why you might be finding it difficult to recruit drivers – but, we’ve also tried to come up with some useful tips to help you make the most of the resource you have and to retain these in-demand drivers.

  1. Address the cost but provide something of better value

Training to become an LGV driver comes with a price tag – £3,000 on average. However, in a survey we recently conducted for Tarmac, it was highlighted the reason as to why candidates applied for the Drivers academy was due to the additional support and training they would receive as opposed to obtaining the qualification alone.

By creating a development programme which entices individuals to train with your organisation but also provides the encouragement they need to stay on to complete their qualification, you are more likely to recruit long-term drivers and build employee loyalty.

  1. It’s all about attraction

Now that you have created a fantastic opportunity, it’s time to reach out to potential applicants and make your organisation stand out in comparison to the competition.

With 9 vacancies available for a single qualified driver, it is imperative that benefits are considered as a viable way to interest applicants. By assessing what competitors are offering whilst identifying the advantages and perks of joining your organisation, you should be able to create an attractive scheme which will gives your business the upper hand.

  1. Invest, invest, invest

So you’ve hired your drivers – what next? With competition on the incline for qualified drivers, it could become increasingly difficult to retain staff following completion of the programme. What is important now is to ensure that your employees understand that there are even more opportunities available for them to develop even further within your organisation.

Kuehne + Nagel, a global logistics company, have addressed the national driver shortage by investing heavily into their workforce with almost 95% of managers having been recruited internally. As with any role, the scope of career progression is fundamental to a candidate deciding whether to stay with your company or to move on to opportunities which allow further development.

Those are our top three tips for dealing with the national shortage of qualified drivers – and with the average age of a driver standing at 53 years old, it may be worth considering an apprenticeship programme to recruit future talent to create a sustainable talent pipeline.

So, you’ve made hires for your apprenticeship programme. The candidates which have made the cut will now be working at your company. How can you make sure they stay?

Most likely to be the first role the apprentice has been in – they will have had little to no experience of working in business. With the increase in students opting for the apprenticeship route, and with more companies offering programmes, it’s important to understand that attraction is only half the battle.

Here are our top tips to help you retain your apprentices throughout the course of their apprenticeship programme.


A key way to make sure that your apprentices want to stay is to deliver.

Many organisations make the mistake of overpromising and under-delivering – whether this is for apprentices, experienced hires or graduates – so, if you cannot guarantee an opportunity, then you shouldn’t use it as a way to draw in talent.

If the apprentice programme does not match up to what you have promised, you will end up with demotivated or even frustrated trainees who will start searching for new opportunities elsewhere.


Whilst apprentices are a great source of future talent , it is highly important to create a nurturing work environment for them to grow and develop in. Since they have no experience of working previously, it is up to you to create an open flow of communication and be responsive.

What we suggest is designing a personal development plan and having regular catch-ups. This allows opportunity for the trainee to raise any issues or concerns and provide a chance for you to tackle the problem with an achievable solution.


With competition for apprentices growing every year, it is important to understand how your organisation stands out from competitors. Do not be afraid to find out why your apprentices joined you in the first place. Why?

Understanding why gives you the knowledge of what it is you need to do to make sure the passion they initially had does not burn out. In addition to this, regularly measuring the success of your scheme against competition should drive your business to be more efficient.


Often overlooked, a vital reason as to why candidates opt for the apprenticeship route initially is the promise of progression. The potential to be at a certain status or earning a certain salary by a certain age is incredibly attractive for apprentices. Whilst they understand the importance of hard-work, apprentices are the self-starters, ambitious and keen to start learning and earning on the job. This should not stop once they complete their programme.

Near the end of their programme, it has proven to be really useful and effective to identify the successes and drawbacks of the scheme with each apprentice, but also to create a long-term plan for their progression. This actively demonstrates the value of their role, and how you would like to assist them in developing the skills and attributes needed to take their career to the next level.

There we have it – our top tips for retaining your apprentices. Underlying all the key elements of creating a successful apprenticeship programme is to understand their motivations to work and what they want to achieve. By doing so, you can create a successful formula to ensure that, when you invest in apprentices as future talent, you will be able to retain them for many more years to come.

Please contact us through our website if you would like to know more!

recruitment processes

Your recruitment processes help you find the best talent

Do your recruitment processes help you find great candidates? Struggling with retention rates? Or maybe your attraction strategies just aren’t reaching out to the calibre of applicants you’d like.

The recruitment market has become increasingly competitive – companies are looking for better ways to recruit. Rest assured – there is a better way to source super candidates. Here are 5 easy things you can do to improve your recruitment processes:

  • The devil is in the detail

Job adverts and postings mark the very start of the recruitment process and needs to explain the vacancy in enough detail whilst encouraging candidates to apply. Instead of just listing the essential requirements including education, experience and training, why not include a list of typical daily activities completed by the last person in the position?

One thing to remember however, is that if you’re looking to recruit for a specialist employee, then state this and highlight exactly what requirements are needed for a candidate to be considered for the role. Most often than not, job adverts for the most specialist roles tend to be vaguer since recruiters fall into the trap of focusing more on the volume of applications rather than the quality – decide which one would be better for the vacancy you’re recruiting for.

Better yet, you could outline a development or training programme to be undertaken in the first 3 months to outline key expected achievements – this will do a much better job of attracting the high-calibre candidates, making the quality of your hiring decisions even sweeter.

  • It’s a group effort

Get other managers involved. They can help you to make a better decision on the candidates’ suitability. One person’s opinion isn’t necessarily the best opinion or won’t provide the full picture. It’s vital to include others that the new hire will interact with most often during their role.

By exploring the opinions of others, it will become easier to identify expectations and highlight key qualities required since those working with the new hire will have a strong grasp of what kind of person will succeed in the role and perform to the expected standard.

  • Testing techniques

This is especially crucial for a recruitment process searching for candidates with technical skills or high levels of experience. The truth is, some candidates may emphasise or exaggerate their experience, skills or talents on their CV.

As a company invested in hiring the right person for the role, don’t be afraid to test if the candidates are actually able to do everything they say they can do – but be impressed if they do, and even more so if they do it well.

An example of this could be asking a Sales candidate to do a mock Sales call, or just like one of our clients, Turning Point, organise a Meet and Greet session if the role is in social care and requires a hands-on attitude. Not only will this technique separate the wheat from the chaff, you’ll be able to test their skills and identify honest candidates.

  • Are your recruitment processes consistent?

Every candidate should receive fair judgement at every stage of the recruitment process, regardless of whether they have been successful. In order to make the best decisions, you’ll need to compare the relative performance of the candidates.

There are many ways to achieve this. Standardising the questions asked at each stage. Providing all candidates with the same information (no favouritism!) Using indicators to assess positive and negative behaviour throughout the recruitment process.

Furthermore, using a hiring scorecard or a points system can help to make sure that education, experience, training and additional certifications are measured in the same to improve fairness throughout the process.

  • Emphasise Growth and Development

A candidate will join your company for the growth and development opportunities. What is important to remember is that investing in your employees results in a happy and motivated workforce. As a result, this can increase productivity, and improve the employee culture. 

It’s important to remember that you can recruit a candidate, to grow into the role. Development opportunities allow the candidate to develop and build the skills that the role requires.

Likewise, if you’re really struggling to find a great candidate or are having difficulties retaining staff based on the fact that you are looking for the perfect candidate or a very specialised skill, you could be missing out on great talent which just needs an extra push and development to become the perfect candidate.

So there are our 5 easy things you can do to improve your recruitment process. Investing in your existing employees as well as potential new hires is crucial. Don’t forget – your recruitment process is vital for selecting the right talent for your organisation.


7 Steps to the best Recruitment Campaign ever

No shows and low attendance rate at assessment centres and interviews can be a huge pain – going through the process of selecting the best candidates before preparing a day of interviews or exercises is time-consuming.

It’s all well and good putting valuable time, energy and resource into an engaging recruitment experience, but if you are losing candidates and have low attendance rate during the final, most crucial stages in the process, then does it really matter how great it was?

Measures of success for recruitment campaigns should include the attendance rate at assessment centre and interview stage. After all, a recruitment process is designed to transform an applicant into a new hire – and by having a high attendance rate at assessment centre, you’ll be giving your organisation the best chance of recruiting the right talent.  

We help Kuehne + Nagel achieve at least 90% attendance rate at each of their assessment centres – here are our tips on how you can achieve the same.

  • Increase touchpoints of communication

Are you communicating with your candidates regularly? When was the last point at which they received contact from you? If you’re struggling to answer either of those questions, it’s imperative to understand that communication is the first step of building a relationship with your candidates – and they might just become a future employee if you maintain a positive impression.

Effective touchpoints allow both the organisation and candidate to form a bond, making the candidate feel like the company is familiar to them, before they have even joined – but this also allows greater opportunity to identify if a candidate may withdraw or have difficulties attending the assessment centre or interview – providing you with another opportunity to better improve the quality of candidate experience.

  • Be motivating

Candidates feel more engaged with every aspect of the recruitment process if they believe you want them to succeed. At the end of the day, candidates will always remember the way in which they were treated throughout the recruitment process.

Encouragement and motivation can help to minimise the rate of drop outs and have a positive effect on the level of performance at assessment centre or interview stage.

  • Taking the right documents

Speeding up the pre-employment process if they are successful is one thing, but if candidates know exactly what to take along to their assessment centre or interview with enough time to prepare the documents they are increasingly likely to attend. If they do not have the right documents or feel flustered about attending the next stage in the process, they are more likely to raise concerns and inform you if this would sway their decision for attending the next stage in the process.

  • Know exactly where your candidate has also applied

Particularly since competition for candidates is at an all-time high, it is likely they are in the recruitment process for more than one organisation. In order to gain the upper hand, you must understand the likelihood of the candidate accepting another offer of employment whilst they are going through the recruitment process.

So, not only is it important to strengthen your employer brand, it’s essential to know if candidates are in the application process for another role and if so, which stage they have reached to prepare for the worst-case scenario in which you lose a fantastic candidate to a competitor.

Whilst this can be a difficult and off-putting question to ask, you can be tactful. Simply asking “How do we weigh up against other opportunities that you are considering right now” can be a good way to approach this.  You’ll be surprised what you might learn about how your organisation is viewed, who you are competing with and of course who you are competing with.

  • Manage cycle times efficiently

With recruitment campaigns in general, it’s important to manage the time taken for a candidate to go through the recruitment process.

Volume recruitment campaigns are no exception – in fact, in volume recruitment employer markets are deemed to be even more competitive and volatile when recruiting for a high number of roles or in a particular area where skills levels do not match the needs of the employer.

It is because of this, that an organisation must seek to take candidates through the recruitment process swiftly and efficiently to have the best possible chance of hiring the right talent for their business.

Combined with the risk of candidates being picked by competitors, a shorter cycle time is more engaging for the applicant – add a fantastic candidate experience into the mix and your organisation should have no problems improving the rate of attendance in the later stages of the recruitment process if you follow our top tips.

If you’d like to find out more information about how you can run a great recruitment campaign, why not check out our seven steps to the best recruitment campaign ever?

Sourcing Candidates

Smart sourcing and attraction strategies are crucial when it comes to hiring the best talent – you may already have a great recruitment process in place, but this means nothing if you have no quality candidates to put through it.  So how can you improve your chances of sourcing better candidates?

Being proactive in your approach for sourcing candidates can make all the difference – passive attraction and sourcing strategies can limit your hiring decisions to only the best of the candidates who happened to see your advert or vacancy posting.

Download our E-book for more tips on running the best recruitment campaign ever! 

Does your attraction and sourcing strategy need an overhaul?

  • Is your sourcing and attraction strategy limited to posting adverts on job boards or LinkedIn?
  • Does the word Boolean mean anything to you?
  • Is your Twitter stream overloaded with links directing people to your vacancies?
  • Do you find yourself doing the same thing, over and over again, and hoping it leads to better results?

If the answer is yes to most of these questions, then your candidate sourcing and attraction strategy could do with a remodel. Luckily, we’ve got 5 smart ways to help you achieve better results.

Sourcing Tip 1: Know where your audience is

With so many attraction channels to choose from, it’s tempting to throw them all into the mix.  But this approach is likely to lead a whole heap of work, with little return.  Identify what communication stream is best suited to your target candidates – do they use more traditional channels like job boards or the job centre, or are they active on online platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter?

In fact, Penguin Random House have been targeting their ideal candidates using Tumblr, a social media platform, and promoting the opportunity using the hashtag #thescheme on Twitter. Simple but effective -Penguin Random House found this beneficial in recruiting creative individuals – perfect for their company. What communication streams are you using

candidate sourcing

Sourcing tip 2: “Sourcing AND effectively AND recruiting”

There are a growing number of tools where you can source candidates directly.  However recruiting managers and HR teams often fall into the habit of using generic search methods and terms to source talent. Sometimes a general search term such as “care worker” or “graduate” could help you find a pool of potential candidates.

More often than not however it’s likely you’re after someone who meets specific criteria. And where this is the case, Boolean searching is key to efficiently pinpointing the right kind of candidates. You’ll see an immediate change in the type of candidates you source – quality is more important than quantity.

candidate sourcing

Sourcing tip 3: Candidates are looking for a reason to join your company

Deciding to join a new organisation, whether the candidate is actively searching for a new role or not, is a huge decision. Whilst the promise of playing an important role in your business plays a part, the most significant factor considered when an applicant is sourced is whether they see themselves working in your business.

Most adverts focus heavily on promoting the job and not the organisation – but those applying will not remain in that role forever, so really the focus should be the challenge and outcomes. Job descriptions covering all the responsibilities of the role or vacancy are lame, so really push the boat out on WHY candidates should apply to join your organisation and what challenges lie ahead.

Job adverts should be written to inspire candidates to make a difference by joining your organisation – it should also emphasize how they can achieve this. Applicants will be motivated when they have an outline of the key skills required and their importance for the role they’re applying for, so creating a an advert full of passion is key!

candidate sourcing

Sourcing tip 4: Top talent know other top talent

Existing employees are brand advocates for your business – and often one of the most under-used sources of attracting talent.  Referrals should be encouraged and the top recruiters never stop asking for them.

Don’t be put of thinking this needs to be a big formal referral scheme – it could be as simple as asking teams or recent hires if they know anyone currently searching for a new role.  The key thing to remember – top talent know other top talent, so it’s likely that your highest performing employees will know someone suitable for the role you’re hiring for.  And the best time to ask them for a referral is right after they join your organisation.

Sourcing tip 5: Block out some time to source candidates

Outline the key personnel who will be involved with sourcing candidates – how many people will you need to actively source for vacancies and how often? But most importantly, make sure you allocate time to source effectively?

Reviewing your sourcing strategy will highlight strengths and weaknesses in your current processes. Unless the shortcomings are addressed, sourcing could do more harm than good for your recruitment processes – effective sourcing really can make all the difference between hiring okay talent vs. hiring great talent.

Direct sourcing is often seen as a last resort for filling vacancies due to a lack of suitable applications but this doesn’t have to be the case. Implementing direct sourcing as an active part of a recruitment process will improve the quality of candidates assessed at each stage and could very well bring you the results you expect.

Are you planning on running a recruitment campaign and need to source some great candidates? Click here to find out what Cohesion can do for you.