Let’s face it – the job market is a challenging place right now. There are so many companies out there looking for drivers, and yet there just aren’t enough to fill the vacancies. If you find the right job for you, it’s about making sure you have the right qualifications and work ethic to match the company. If you’ve never looked for a job as an HGV driver before, it can all seem a bit daunting. So today, we’ve got some helpful hints and tips to get you ready for your interviews and secure your first job as an HGV driver.
You only get one chance to make a first impression, so make sure yours is a good one. This starts from the moment you fill in the application form. If it’s handwritten, make sure your writing is neat and legible. If it’s online, make sure you fill in all the areas on the form. Make sure it’s submitted to the right place, with a unique cover letter if they’ll accept/request one. Make sure you are presented properly, in smart, clean clothes, with clean hair and well groomed. Take a copy of your CV and your questions with you to the interview, and make sure you arrive on time or early. All of these things seem small, but they add up to a great first impression.
This goes for any job interview with any company in any industry. Preparation is the key to success. So before you even fill in an application form, do your research. Look into the companies you’re applying to, visit their websites and familiarise yourself with what they do. Write down a couple of questions to ask in your interview (to prove you’ve done your research, which is very impressive) and pull together any information you think might help you win the job. If you’re writing a cover letter, tailor each one to the specific company using your research – you’re much more likely to get a response that way!
You might think that sitting behind the wheel of an HGV all day driving from place to place, unloading your trailer and reloading it again, there’s not a lot of need for good English skills. And you’d be wrong. As an HGV driver, you’re expected to fill in a lot of paperwork every day, talk to your bosses, logistics officers and your customers in a clear and understandable way and generally able to communicate effectively. This means you need to brush up your spoken and written English. Grab a pen and start writing some things down – anything really – to make sure your handwriting is legible, and your grammar/spelling is up to scratch. Start practising alternatives to swearing and familiarise yourself with the lingo of the HGV world. You’ll thank us later.
Of course, we’ve saved the most important one for last. Before you can secure that first job as an HGV driver, you need to be able to actually drive an HGV. This means you need to get yourself some proper training, time behind the wheel, theory knowledge and qualification or two to prove you know it all. Your Driver CPC is an absolute must, along with the relevant category licence for the kind of HGV you want to drive. If you want to make yourself a really attractive candidate, it’s worth qualifying with one or two licences, as this makes you more flexible and offers employers more bang for their buck.
At The HGV Training Centre, we provide full and comprehensive training for drivers at all stages of their career, from seasons veterans of the road to brand new, never-been-behind-the-wheel-before drivers looking to take their first steps in the industry. We can help guide you through what you need to know, provide the training and mentorship you need and even help pull some strings to find you that first job. If you would like to find out more, just get in touch with the team today.
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