A Wrexham-based warehouse and logistics company’s innovative driver training programme has featured in a national business magazine.
Ningbo Palletised Distribution was the focus of a skills shortage report in Wales Business Insider, which examined how the firm trains staff to go from warehouse worker to HGV driver in just four months.
Journalist Jenny Brookfield spoke to managing director Chris Stockton for the magazine, which is read by more than 200,000 business leaders in Wales each month.
Chris' comments were followed by insight from senior figures at GoCompare.com, IT firm Team Metalogic, and HSJ accountants on how they train their staff to stay ahead of the game.
To tackle a lack of skilled drivers, Ningbo gives every warehouse employee the chance to train as a driver of a HGV, forklift truck, or an ADR vehicle, which transports dangerous goods.
And the scheme has been a success, with three former warehouse employees now transporting pallets across the UK for the company. In addition, all Ningbo trainees have passed their practical exam at the first attempt, with a pipeline of candidates scheduled to start the programme shortly.
The company's latest graduate, Lee Jones, is now starting his new role on the road, with another candidate applying for his HGV provisional to join Ningbo's growing cohort of drivers.
The HGV licence process takes four months to complete, with much of the process involving regulation including a medical and desktop exams.
The practical training and exam takes just one week to complete, providing the driver passes first time.
Chris said: "The offer to go on the road is put to our warehouse employees, and they jump at the chance, as it offers a flexible role with an increased salary.
"The training programme allows young and older people to go from the warehouse to a HGV cabin via a planned and comprehensive training scheme, with a pay grade to suit their age and experience.
"We are keen to develop a strong team of high-quality drivers and staff to support our growth plans, and I urge anyone interested to get in touch to find out more."
Ningbo Palletised Distribution is part of the Ningbo Group. Sister business Ningbo Furniture, is a supplier of contract furniture.
For further information visit https://www.ningbo.co.uk/ or www.ningbodistribution.co.uk.