Stockton Riverside College is launching a logistics academy in conjunction with NETA Training Trust, Think Logistics and national charity, Career Ready.
“Logistics is a key priority for the Tees Valley, yet there seems to be a general lack of knowledge of what the sector fully entails,” said Michelle Elliott, the College’s director of business development.
PD Portcentric Logistics is one of the companies backing the programme. Director Jim French, who is also national chairman of the Road Haulage Association, said: “I’ve talked to young people of school leaving age and there’s a definite lack of awareness of what the logistics industry is about. Similarly, to my mind, there’s a lack of awareness among school teachers and parents as well.”
“This is a great opportunity to help raise awareness and we are only scratching the surface. There are currently 2.2m people employed in logistics in this country, that is one in 12 of UK workers, yet we face a great difficulty in attracting young people in to the industry.” Of the current workforce he said just 9 per cent are under 25 and 45 per cent are over 45.
Nationally the sector needs to recruit approximately 450,000 new workers in the next five years (with 1.2m workers needed between 2012 and 2020), yet the industry is among those to recruit the lowest number of school leavers, second only to agriculture.