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How to Attract the Best Talent Amidst the Growing HGV Driver Shortage in the UK

It is clear that the HGV driver demands will only grow in future. Truck driver recruiting firms needs to try these effective ways of attracting and retaining talent.

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How to Attract the Best Talent Amid HGV Driver Shortage

The UK has been facing an acute HGV driver shortage for a while now. In 2020, there were 76,000 fewer drivers than needed. The problem has only worsened since then.

The reason behind this is a combination of factors such as an aging workforce, high driver training costs, delays at testing stations, and low margins. Developments like Brexit and the unending COVID-19 pandemic have exacerbated the problem. 

As a result, most haulage companies are facing grave difficulties in attracting and retaining the right talent. In this post, we will discuss a few ways to recruit the best HGV drivers despite the ongoing crisis.

#1. Establish A Powerful Web Presence 

We live in times when everyone wants quick results and employers are no different. They want to find licenced drivers immediately after posting the vacancy. While going on a hiring rampage may work sometimes, it might not be an effective long-term solution. 

Companies should capture the attention of potential HGV drivers while thinking of practical ways to retain them. Basically, you need to think long-term. You can do this by building a strong online presence for your company. 

Building a compelling web presence will help you connect with job-seeking HGV drivers, establish your expertise and leadership, answer questions, as well as show who you are as an employer. Prospective drivers will then be able to better understand your company. 

As a result, drivers will engage with you because they genuinely want to be associated with your company, and not just because they need work. Drivers who may not have heard of your company before will also be able to gain a good understanding of it. 

The bottom line is drivers want to know a company before taking up a job there. They want to feel assured that it is a good fit for them and vice versa. If they find that it is, they will likely stay with your company longer.

#2. Go Social

Social media has evolved from an online entertainment platform to a place for finding and connecting with talent. Companies can leverage this tool to their advantage to not only showcase their offerings, but also position themselves as the employer of choice for HGV drivers. The best thing about social media is that pretty much everyone knows how to use it.

A lot of companies are now using social media to develop their brand identity and form relationships with stakeholders. When it comes to using social media for recruiting HGV drivers, companies can do several things, like posting pictures and videos of:

  • Existing drivers driving down a scenic road whilst listening to music
  • Drivers having a friendly conversation with customers/warehouse managers whilst making a delivery
  • The comfortable interiors of the trucks 
  • Behind-the-scenes activities to show them what day-to-day HGV driver tasks include

The idea is to use social media to give potential employees a glimpse of life as an HGV driver - the perks and the culture of the job.

#3. Update Your Recruitment Process

Most companies may not realise it, but nurturing potential employees is as important as nurturing leads. This entails paying attention to the former and showing interesting in who they are. 

Companies need to clearly show that they care about their HGV drivers. Whether you’re hiring through a driver recruitment agency (more on this later) or doing it yourself, talk to candidates and familiarise them with the process of becoming a driver for your company. 

Instead of giving them a ton of paperwork to complete, take them through a systematic orientation and onboarding process. Introduce them to the people in your company whilst putting them in touch with the existing drivers in your team. 

In other words, go beyond the typical technicalities of recruitment. Take measures that encourage drivers to develop an interest in their job. Integrate new drivers in your existing team from the beginning to ingrain a sense of camaraderie. Show them you care so they reciprocate the same way.

#4. Offer Better Incentives to Attract And Retain Talent 

Attracting and retaining HGV drivers involves more than just making your requirements known. You should remember that just because you were able to hire a few HGV drivers, it doesn’t mean they will choose to stay with you. You need to go the extra mile to keep your drivers engaged and interested in their role within your company. 

Put yourself in your drivers’ shoes and think from their perspective. Think beyond the paycheck because employees typically want more than that from their employers. They want their company to see them as a person rather than merely someone who fills up a position in the company’s recruitment landscape. 

Offer enticing benefits. They need not be expensive. For instance, you can offer fuel cards, gym memberships, and discount vouchers for personal use. To ensure drivers’ comfort and overall well-being, provide them with ergonomic seating, subscription to music apps, hands-free devices, and other facilities that enhance their on-the-job experiences. 

It also helps to provide drivers with perks such as extra holiday time and flexible work schedules. You can also offer a special incentive program to drivers who follow driving regulations stringently. 

Feel free to ask your drivers’ team about the kinds of incentives that would interest them. Once you work out a plan, announce the benefits amply. In general, ensure to keep your drivers happy. When listing an opening, make it a point to mention all the benefits on offer to attract the best talent.

For example, to find talent amidst the current HGV driver shortage, Tesco recently announced (via a job posting on its website) that it is offering a £1,000 signing-on bonus to lorry drivers who join the company before the end of September.

#5. Rope-In A Driver Recruitment Agency

Working with the best driver recruitment agency can work out extremely well. These agencies have years of experience in handling HGV driver recruitments and specialise in this area. They focus their resources on matching professional, commercial drivers to suitable HGV and LGV jobs, and clients who need them.

A driver recruitment agency will also implement comprehensive pre-employment checks and screenings to assess each candidate’s driving records, physical and mental health, drug and alcohol use, and criminal records to help you hire better talent.

When you work with a driver recruitment agency, you can benefit from their customised approach to your company’s operations. Most agencies also provide specialised training to potential drivers to ensure that they meet the highest professional standards.


It is clear that the demands of the trucking industry will only grow in future. With a critical shortage of HGV drivers, companies need to think of ways to address this issue before it worsens.

Going forward, trucking companies will have to rise above the usual methods of enticing HGV drivers. From transforming their hiring practices and using social media to improving their web presence and working with a driver recruitment agency – these are all effective ways of attracting and retaining talent. Hopefully, the above pointers will help you understand how these methods work in achieving this dual goal. 

Featured Image Credit: unsplash / nxvision

Monday 9th August 2021

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