Skills Shortage: What Training is Available?


Skills Shortage: What Training is Available?

Job Search Support

In our previous blog, we looked at how you could make the most of the current candidate-driven market. This time we’ll be looking at what the Industrial Industry is doing to help solve the skills shortage problem long-term. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about re-training? Or maybe you’ve been thinking ahead for friends and family?

Matt Dann, Thorn Baker Industrial Recruitment Director

It’s no secret that the industry is struggling across the board with a skill and staff shortage – we’ve all been talking about it for what seems like an age. In our last blog Our Top 5 Tips for Job Seekers in the Current Labour Shortage we looked at the current advantages you have as a worker:

  • Focus on your career goals. What kind of career do you want? Which job/s appeal to you in the long term?

  • Be bold in your applications.

  • Think about upskilling

  • Research businesses.

  • Be confident.

But, these solutions really focus on attracting people who are already working. How do we attract new people into the industry?

A survey from CILT has shown that 54% of logistics businesses expect to see skills shortages by 2024, with drivers, warehouse operatives, and back-office vacancies the most urgent to fill. An Edge report shows that demand for transport and logistics employees is 4.6 times higher than young people aspiring to work in the sector.

To compete, thrive and grow in an ever-changing industry, new skills are essential, any business looking to compete for staff in this market must look at their long-term plans as well as the immediate issues. A successful apprenticeship scheme will be central to that.

Elizabeth de Jong, Policy Director at Logistics UK, commented to Logistics UK:

‘The results of the September 2021 Performance Tracker show that the logistics industry is suffering from skills shortages that go beyond HGV drivers; businesses are also facing challenges recruiting for vital roles such as warehouse staff, van drivers, fitters, mechanics, technicians, forklift drivers and transport managers. While we are pleased to see logistics businesses are taking steps to attract and retain HGV drivers – through measures such as pay increases, recruitment drives, and the introduction of apprenticeship and upskilling training schemes – we are concerned that some supply chain disruption will continue until these crucial roles are filled.’

Whilst there may be no specific qualifications needed to get an entry-level job as a warehouse worker, there are certain qualifications that can help you develop further.

Training and progression are always desirable for workers, sometimes even over pay rates.


Collaborating with a local training provider like ESS can help you to source funding and take the pressure off when it comes to delivering quality training. Not every business has their own internal training team, this is a great way to ensure your staff can be upskilled effectively.

They can provide Adult Skills Funding to fund a range of qualifications, including their Level 2 in Warehousing & Storage Principles.

The training course provides learners with all the essential knowledge required of basic warehouse work, including how to work efficiently in a team and meet health and safety requirements.

Want to find out more?

If you’re feeling inspired and would like to find out more about how you could get involved? You can do that right here.

What Are Our Clients Doing In-House?

We’ve had many discussions with our clients around what they are doing themselves to help attract and retain staff and we thought we’d share some of the feedback.

Making the most of an ageing workforce

Instead of worrying about this factor some businesses are embracing their older workers and championing them as trainers for newer/ less experienced staff.

This makes a lot of sense.

Internal Training

A lot of businesses we speak to are focusing on this. The industrial sector is really wide-spread and finding a common solution will be tricky.

Parity Pay

Applying AWR rates from day one is a strong theme at the moment. Equal treatment of temporary workers from the beginning will boost the appeal of an employer no end. Working for businesses with strong ethics and values is always at the top of peoples lists.

Cross Departmental Pay Scheme

Creating an incremental pay scheme based on how many departments/ skill sets staff have will create a stronger workforce and could support departments during holiday seasons.


These are just some examples of initiatives that are focusing on a long-term solution for the staffing and skills shortage. The Industrial sector has the potential to offer real career opportunities for young people as well as upskilling people, whatever their background.

Future talent pipeline is something that we talk about a lot as a team, let us know your thoughts on what’s currently available around the skills shortage. Know of another great initiative? Let us know!