Last month, Tesco was reported to be offering a signing bonus of £1,000 to HGV drivers who accept a role before the 30th of September. And they aren’t the only brand opting for incentives like this in response to a chronic shortage of drivers causing further supply chain issues. With a shortage of HGV drivers throughout the UK, can incentives like this solve the problem?
What is meant by a joining bonus?
A signing bonus, also known as a sign-on or joining bonus, is a one-off payment given to candidates who accept a job offer. It’s an incentive and a way to convince a potential employee to join your company rather than go to a competitor. Some companies offer this bonus on the understanding that it be paid back should the candidate resign within a specific timeframe.
Why do companies give signing bonuses?
The main reason companies offer a signing bonus is to entice a talented candidate away from competitors. With the current shortage within the supply chain industry, incentives like this can make all the difference to your operations (and your competitors). Additional benefits like this also boost your employer branding, which can lead to more people applying for positions with you.
Number of HGV drivers diminishing
The managing director of the RHA spoke of the driver shortage, saying that recruitment is ‘increasingly competitive’ and the diminishing number of candidates is also causing salaries to rise.
Currently, it is taking approximately six months to train up HGV drivers due to a drop in driving test slots caused by COVID-19. And there’s no sign that this will get better soon, businesses are taking the only other option; winning candidates against competitors.
Other issues adding to the shortage of drivers, and therefore, problems with the supply chain include the consequences of Brexit and inequality within the industry.
Are joining bonuses enough?
While offering a joining bonus won’t resolve the shortage of drivers, it can work to resolve the shortage within your own company. However, as this would be a one-off benefit to your candidate, we’d recommend considering additional benefits alongside your signing bonus.
Consider offering contract flexibility, professional development, annual bonuses, a competitive salary or impressive holiday packages too. Merging short-term benefits like a joining bonus with long-term benefits will further increase your chances of securing the best talent against your competitors.
Should you offer a joining bonus?
In addition to enticing the best talent within the supply chain during a driver shortage, an additional benefit to this approach is the ability to bridge the gap if you can’t quite offer the exact salary a candidate is requesting straight away.
A one-time payment could allow you to convince a candidate to accept a job offer, even if you can’t quite meet the requested salary. With job salaries within the supply chain and logistics sector rising, a joining bonus may allow you to pay the requested salary for the first year. Following this, you can review the candidate’s salary and perhaps increase it based on their performance and your financial situation.
How we can help...
Bis Henderson Recruitment could be a valuable resource in helping you shape the leadership teams needed during these times of great disruption and upheaval for UK supply chains.
Contact us on 01604 876 345 if you need any support in reviewing your current team. We can work with you to recruit supply chain leaders that promote change, agility and the multitude of skills need in today’s market.
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