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Co-operative Food aims to steer clear of driver shortage

The Co-operative Food is looking to avoid a potential national shortage of van and lorry drivers by establishing a new training programme for more than 100 warehouse staff.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Co-operative Food aims to steer clear of driver shortage

The Co-operative Food is looking to avoid a potential national shortage of van and lorry drivers by establishing a new training programme for more than 100 warehouse staff.

The retailer said the UK is currently seeing just one driver joining the industry for every six that leave but it hopes to arrest this trend by training depot staff without any previous experience.

Warehouse to Wheels is an eight week programme which involves warehouse workers at eight Co-operative Food depots training to become light goods vehicle drivers.

After gaining their LGV Class 2 Licence, staff will have a choice of either becoming a full time driver or joining a pool where they remain a warehouse operative but available to drive at times of peak need. The scheme will cost nearly £2,000 per employee.

Chris Whitfield, retail and logistics director at the Co-operative Food said: “Our Warehouse to Wheels programme is a great example of how we are committed to developing the talent we already have and it will help us counter a potential shortage of drivers by steadily increasing our LGV pool.

“It will enable those who want to become full time drivers while others can continue to work in the warehouse with the option of topping up their pay by working certain shifts as a driver.”    

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