Is there a shortage of HGV mechanics, technicians and fitters? | Descartes Routing UK

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Is there a shortage of HGV mechanics, technicians and fitters?

HGV Mechanics and Services


Fleet managers are beginning to notice that their HGV’s and LCV’s are taking longer to get repaired, resulting in longer periods off the road.

On top of the HGV driver shortage, we are now experiencing a shortage of HGV mechanics, technicians and fitters. Some of these are thought to have left to pursue a career as a HGV driver to earn a more lucrative salary. The driver shortage is starting to ease thanks to a number of initiatives, but HGVs are taking longer to get fixed, with some being off the road for weeks and in extreme cases months. According to 54% of fleets surveyed by Logistics UK, hiring for these positions is becoming a “severe” problem.  

According to The Times Newspaper there is now a worry that once again shelves in supermarkets and shops could once again become empty due to a lack of vehicles capable of delivering on the road. The concern is that that a HGV mechanic or technician takes much longer to train than a HGV driver, often running into years at college or in apprenticeship. As a result, some fleets are resorting to financial incentives to recruit, resulting in the average salary for an HGV mechanic or technician rising by 15% in the last 2 years. 

It goes without saying that keeping a truck on the road is vital at the moment and ensuring it is not driven harshly will help to prolong its lifetime and prevent major breakdowns. A driver’s behaviour can now easily be monitored and adjusted using  Telematics systems with driver training aids, such as those from Descartes. While, minor defects, if identified and corrected early enough can prevent larger issues from occurring. The best way for a fleet to do this is to have a digital app for their drivers to conduct their daily vehicle safety checks (see - SmartCheck), as any defect is immediately alerted back to the office as soon as it is detected, and parts can be ordered and the vehicle booked in for repairs even before it even returns to base.