Lorry drivers being offered up to £60,000 and other bonuses as shortage bites
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HGV drivers in Suffolk and north Essex are being offered huge salaries and a range of bonuses as companies look to end driver shortages.
Adverts for haulage drivers posted in the local area have shown wages of over £40,000 and in one case up to £60,000 a year could be on offer.
Chelmsford-based Woodland Group had one of the highest value job postings for a Class 1 HGV driver.
For this position they are offering a wage of between £45,000 and £60,000.
"As a business, we look to pay all employees a fair rate based on experience, knowledge and responsibility. As such we especially keep abreast of the HGV driver pay rates nationally and maintain the rate of pay in line with other larger, like-minded businesses," said Sean Kirby, managing director, of Woodland Group's domestic fleet.
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"The current shortage of HGV drivers has put a well reported focus on drivers, their needs, responsibilities and pay.
"It has also seen an increase in pay across the industry as the shortage of drivers has resulted in incredible demand for quality drivers in order to keep trucks on the road."
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One company, unnamed in the posting online but described as and "independent logistics and global trade management provider" looking for drivers in Felixstowe, said that it would offer a £2,000 bonus to drivers who signed on and completed 20 shifts by October 1.
It also offered a £500 bonus for referring friends to the company.
Tom Cornwell, from the Road Haulage Association, said that the rising wages and bonuses had increased in recent years.
“It’s certainly something that is becoming more common,” he said.
"If you rewind a couple of years ago massive sign on bonuses and high wages were unheard of."
Mr Cornwell said he had seen a number of different incentives offered to drivers including those related to mobile phones and vouchers.
Whilst this is good for drivers, the news of bonuses could mean higher prices for shoppers.
""For the drivers themselves its a good thing," he said.
"But at some time that cost has to be passed on somewhere.
"They have to pass it on to customers if they can absorb it. That means higher prices in supermarkets."