More than 15% of Britain’s van drivers are planning to quit their jobs within the next 12 months, new research from GoCompare Van Insurance reveals. The comparison site recently surveyed van drivers in the UK, shining a light on the hidden challenges they face every day.
If all 15% do choose to leave, this could equate to over 44,000 drivers exiting the industry, leaving a deficit of as many as 22,124 van drivers. This could quickly cause problems as demand for drivers grows, particularly around busy seasons such as Black Friday and the Christmas period.
As of June 2021, Britain had seen a 5.2% yearly increase in van traffic, making up an 18.4% share of our roads. The UK must ensure that it can retain this workforce, in order to reach pre-pandemic levels.
GoCompare has identified several factors affecting the health and wellbeing of drivers while at work. The negative impact these have on their mental health is motivating many to make a career change.
Work-related stress, negative behaviour from other drivers, loneliness and poor working conditions are all taking their toll on workers in the industry. Half of those who have suffered from stress attributed it to unrealistic expectations around deadlines and workload.
Loneliness also plays a part in the life of van drivers, with delivery drivers being the most likely occupation to encounter it. An astonishing 50% of those struggling with loneliness admitted they often won’t have a single non-work-related conversation over a whole shift.
Ryan Fulthorpe, motoring expert at GoCompare, says: “Our research has revealed the shocking news that the UK may lose a significant number of van drivers over the next 12 months. In the wake of the HGV driver shortage, we must improve working conditions for drivers to avoid any further crises.
“Van driving can be a lonely job in nature, but we need to find new solutions to improve these kinds of issues. That way, we can protect the mental health of key workers in this industry, and ensure Britain’s economy remains strong.”
The financial burdens of being a van driver also play a part in work dissatisfaction. For those without fuel cards, as much as 10% of their yearly salary is spent on filling up. Two-thirds of drivers also receive inconsistent or insufficient pay, meaning their outgoings have much more of an impact.
More information about this research, as well as details for helplines available to anyone suffering from these issues, can be found on GoCompare’s website.
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