Logistics

HGV Driving: The facts

You’ve seen them on the road, but what are the facts behind HGV driving? Explore our infographic to find out the interesting, weird and serious HGV facts.

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Driver of the Year award launches

We are very pleased to announce the launch of the Driver of the Year award!

From the trunkers and the trampers to the local delivery drivers, we want to thank our drivers for all they do. Some people take lorry drivers for granted, but our society simply could not operate without their hard work. That’s why we believe it is important to recognise and reward our drivers. Our logistics division originally introduced the Driver of the Year award last year before Bluestones One launched, rewarding their hardest working candidates from their Derby, Glasgow and Warrington offices. The popularity of the reward convinced us to launch it again this year, incorporating our new logistics office in Newcastle as well as our existing locations.

Our clients have been invited to nominate the drivers who have impressed them this year and gone above and beyond to deliver exceptional service. From the shortlist of nominated candidates, we will whittle it down to four winners who will be awarded £100 worth of shopping vouchers.

As well as rewarding and recognising our drivers, we will also be celebrating the role drivers play in the UK’s economy through a series of posts on our social networks.

The winners will be announced on the 1st of February on the Bluestones One Facebook page.

To find out more about our driving opportunities, view our current roles or contact your nearest logistics office.

Bluestones One on the driver shortage

The UK continues to face a driver shortage, with the deficit staked at between 45,000 – 50,000 HGV drivers this year alone. So, we spoke with Warrington’s Regional Operations Manager, Martin Bispham, to find out his thoughts on the driver shortage and what needs to be done to combat it.

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Top interview questions for professional drivers

Job interviews – something everyone has experienced at least once in their lives. It’s no different for professional drivers, especially those working contract roles who might end up attending several interviews a year.

If you’re yet to have your first interview as a professional driver, it can be daunting to know what to expect and if it will be dramatically different to any interview you’ve attended before. Many companies require their prospective employees to undergo a practical assessment to ensure they are technically capable, but what about the formal interview?

Here are some of the most common questions you can expect at an interview as a professional driver – whether that’s tramping up and down the country, making deliveries in a 7.5 tonne or nipping around the city in a van.

Tell us about your experience as a professional driver?

This is a standard question that most companies will ask. It is your opportunity to tell them about your past roles in more detail and give them more information you couldn’t cover in your CV.

What do you think the primary roles of a professional driver are?

The employer wants to make sure you understand that the role of a driver isn’t just driving. There are so many things a driver is also responsible for, like providing outstanding customer service, ensuring they are sticking to health and safety rules, maintaining the vehicle and keeping paperwork up to date.

What do you know about the company?

With this question, the company is checking to see if you’ve done your research and are passionate about the role you are pursuing.
What would you do if you were running out of driving hours but hadn’t finished a job?

The company want to see how well you are able to assess a situation – whether you’re running out of driving hours because of a traffic jam, slow-moving vehicles or hold-ups at a distribution centre – while ensuring you’re staying within the law and taking breaks when you need them.

Do you think teamwork is important in this industry?

While traditionally seen as a bit of a lonely job, employers want to see that as a driver you understand you are part of something much bigger and will be interacting with a wide range people from distribution centre managers, operations staff, other drivers and the public.

How do you handle unexpected instances? Like mechanical breakdowns or receiving the wrong load?

The company want to see how quickly you can think on your feet while remaining calm and finding a suitable solution to a problem.

How familiar are you with drivers’ hours and the European working time directive?

The company wants to make sure you know the laws that affect professional drivers throughout the UK and Europe and understand the importance of following them.

If you’re looking for a new driving role, check out our latest jobs or get in contact with the team.

How to prepare for your Driver CPC training

It’s an inevitable part of being a professional driver – as of 2015, all commercial drivers on the road are expected to have a valid Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC), which has to be kept up-to-date with periodic training every 5 years.

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Women behind the wheel

When you picture a lorry driver, what comes to mind? The stereotype of a trucker is a middle-aged man, which isn’t far from fact – the average lorry driver is a 51-year-old male, but in recent years we’re seeing a growing number of women behind the wheel.

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Top tips for driving safely this winter

Tips for staying safe on the road in this horrendous weather (good weather if you’re a kid getting the week off school!) are understandably being shared everywhere this week. Without an end to the snowy blizzard in sight (we’re being dramatic, the snow will be gone by next week), here are our top tips to get you through not only snow but flooding and fog.

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Changes to fines for commercial drivers

From the 5th March 2018, the rules around fining drivers for committing driving hours offences are changing. When the new rules come into effect, if you’re caught you could be fined up to £300 and can also be prosecuted or have your vehicle immobilised. It won’t just apply to offences committed that day, but anytime the rules are broken in the last 28 days, meaning the fines can be huge.

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Best apps for lorry drivers

As David Brigdale (Bluestones One Logistics Warrington’s operations director) put it so well, “back in the day when I was a lad/driver we used good old-fashioned street maps and the tongue in our heads to ask for directions, had to use a call box to make phone calls and had what was called a BT chargecard which direct dialled the office. None of this electronic stuff…”

But, those days have gone (for better or worse, we don’t know yet) and there is now a whole host of apps available to make life on the road a little easier. Whether you opt for the free apps or shell out a bit of money for the premium ones, there’s no doubt there’s something out there to help you with your job

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Logistics predictions for 2018

Another exciting, and busy(!) year in logistics has almost passed but we’re not resting on our laurels! 2018 will soon be upon us and we’re rapidly preparing for what the new year will bring us, our drivers and the logistics industry.

Logistics Predictions

2017 has already been a huge year for logistics – from the announcement of driverless lorry trials to increased regulations on rest breaks. We’ve got our crystal ball out (we are, however, not Mystic Meg) to predict what could possibly affect the industry in the coming 12 months.

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