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Working with the HGV industry on recent vocational test changes

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We are currently going through a significant period of change with our vocational driving test service, to help increase the number of available HGV test appointments to help tackle the current HGV driver shortage.

We are no longer carrying out car and trailer tests, and off-road elements of HGV and bus tests will soon be carried out by approved vocational trainers and DVSA.

Reducing the impact

We understand these changes may have significant impact everyone in HGV training and logistics industry. So, over the coming weeks and months, we want to make sure we give you timely information to help you and your businesses successfully adjust to the changes.

In many ways, our engagement and communications with stakeholders and trainers will have a domino effect, so it is vital we get this right.

For example, our support to trainers applying to carry out the off-road manoeuvre part of the vocational test will allow us to offer 500 more of these tests a week.

This will benefit vehicles operators needing more HGV drivers at this critical time and in the future by making it easier for HGV learner drivers to get a test appointment and gain employment.

In turn, more HGV drivers on the road will make sure we all have access to groceries, medication, and other essentials we rely on for our everyday lives.

Keeping trainers informed and involved

Online meetings have become normal practice for many businesses since the start of the pandemic and we are no different.

We’ve been holding regular webinars with trainers to provide them with the most up-to-date information on our activities.

A great example has been our recent vocational test webinars with trainers where we explained what the forthcoming changes will mean for their business, and how they can get involved in this work.

These were some of the largest webinars we have ever held, attracting 439 attendees which included a range of large, medium and small training providers.

A further 189 trainers attended our follow-up webinar, to support them in completing the application forms for approval to provide Driver CPC part 3a tests.

These webinars are really important as it’s a great opportunity to make sure the audience understands the changes. They also gave the audience the opportunity to ask questions.

This is really important as we can use this valuable feedback to make sure our guidance and future information covers the questions asked, along with anything we’ve missed to help prepare trainers, operators and vocational drivers for the changes coming in on 15 November 2021.

Improving future events

We have learnt a lot from these webinars and we have also taken on board feedback from attendees to help us to improve future webinars. We asked attendees to complete a short survey after the webinar to make sure we were covering the right topics and areas of interest. 72% of HGV trainers said they found the content useful, 90% said they would recommend them to other trainers and 94% of them would like to attend future webinars.

Next steps

We are keen to make sure the vocational test changes go as smoothly as possible.

We are currently processing the application forms from organisations who have applied for approval to provide Driver CPC part 3a tests. They will also need to get their sites and assessors approved.

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