Driving distracted

Lorry driving is one of the most difficult professions in the world.  Drivers spend many hours on the road, logging millions of miles, to make sure freight is delivered on time and – most importantly – safely.

Unlike the majority of work environments, the road is a dangerous place.  In fact, in its most recent update in 2012, the World Health Organisation pushed ‘road injury’ to one of its global top ten causes of death – the only cause not originating from disease.

A level playing field across freight modes would benefit the economy and society

Recent research carried out for the Campaign for Better Transport1, which used existing Government criteria, found that HGVs pay less than half of the costs associated with their activities in terms of road congestion, road collisions, road damage and pollution.  The Government’s average cost across different road types is 83.9 pence for mile based in 2010 prices; for example on A roads congestion is 76 pence, accidents 6 pence, infrastructure damage 11 pence, pollution 3 pence and climate change 4 pence.

Should the rest of the UK care about the prospect of Scottish independence?

Scottish residents are about to vote on whether the country should become independent.  The rest of the UK won’t get a vote (even if they’re Scottish!) but the outcome matters to all of us for practical not just emotional reasons.

Survey reveals significant number of transport firms back zero-hours contracts

According to the latest Close Brothers Business Barometer, 15% of UK transport businesses are in favour of zero-hours contracts despite the widespread controversy surrounding their introduction.

Of the above figure, 59% believe that these contracts would allow them to respond quickly to fluctuating demand for their services, while almost a third (29%) believe that it would grant their employees greater flexibility in the workplace.

Drivers urgently needed!

The road freight transport sector is finding it difficult to recruit the new drivers that it urgently needs. Having cut its cloth during recession, the industry must meet greater demand for more loads to be moved during the current economic growth or the consequence will be felt across all industries.

The implications of a Scottish ‘yes’ vote for the logistics sector

A ‘yes’ vote in the forthcoming Scottish independence referendum could have significant ramifications for the logistics industry and the wider business community.

If Scotland votes ‘yes’ on 18th September, it will force businesses and tax collectors to re-think their control methods for the movement of alcohol, tobacco and oil – products subject to high duties and fraud – which currently bring in well over £40 billion a year to the public purse.

Top 10 tips for protecting your exporting business online

Most businesses that export to overseas countries understand the importance of having a relevant and engaging website that allows them to market their produce effectively to their target audience.

In an increasingly competitive digital landscape, savvy businesses will be constantly harnessing new e-marketing and online tools in order to remain competitive.  For many businesses trading internationally, the internet is the most powerful channel of communication available, and when utilised fully, it can help companies to grow at an unprecedented rate.

Traffic Commissioners consider crackdown on mobile phone offences

With Traffic Commissioners (TCs) looking at the case for more stringent action against professional drivers caught using mobile phones, it’s important to examine the potential consequences.

Since February 2007 it has been an offence to use a hand-held mobile phone or device whilst driving.  Offenders are usually dealt with by way of an endorsable fixed penalty with a fine of £100 and three penalty points endorsed on their driving licence.

Missing in action

Containers and pallets used in delivery processes cost companies thousands of pounds monthly – yet many organisations are grinning and bearing the losses as these often ubiquitous transport assets are deserting the frontline rarely to be seen again.  But why isn’t more attention paid to the demise of the container in an industry of ever tightening margins?

Inventory optimisation – a key tool for supply chain success

In markets subject to globalisation, volatility, economic uncertainty, changes in demand channels and different distribution strategies, companies face tremendous challenges to match increasing supply volumes and product ranges to customer demand while keeping costs down at the same time.  The amount of inventory a company holds can be a significant cost factor, based on the cost of the inventory itself and the cost of shipping, handling and storage.  So naturally, most companies want to hold as little inventory as possible.