Apprenticeships – the way forward in freight logistics

Getting behind the wheel of a 26-tonne articulated truck is just one of the vocational schemes adopted by Think Logistics, an industry initiative to get school leavers to see the career road ahead as logisticians and supply chain experts.

Matthew Kibble Transport of Lancashire, shareholder member of Pallet-Track, is blazing a trail for young people to consider the broad scope of apprenticeships in logistics, distribution and the road haulage industry and offers an eclectic mix of venues, supply chain experts and education specialists.

The award-winning haulier has hosted a series of events for students and young job-seekers including a steering group which was held at the Pallet-Track hub in Wolverhampton and career academies at Nelson and Colne College in Lancashire, near to Kibble’s own depot.

“The worlds of logistics and education are very different and employers are trying to forge links with a local schools or colleges to ensure that the right approach is taken. This means calling within school hours and asking to speak to the heads of department rather than the admin team,” said Justin Thatcher, head of business studies at Nelson and Colne College.

“As a result, the college has had a positive response to the young people seminars and will be looking to work with the Matthew Kibble Transport again on similar initiatives,” she added.
Founder Matthew Kibble said the college event was one of a number of schemes the firm was running in order to get ‘young blood’ into logistics.

“These were a series vocational sessions, which included getting behind the wheel of our vehicles as well as marketing exercises and student challenges such as working out profit margins in a practical assignment,” explained Matthew.

“Helping young people to understand the breadth of careers that are available in this sector is part of the challenge because this is not traditionally the kind of work that people leave school to go into. Logistics is very important and without it the UK would simply grind to a halt, as an industry, we cannot sit back and wait for people to find us. We face an uncertain future with an aging workforce who are retiring and taking their experience and knowledge with them. We have to find new blood and explain the variety of roles that are available within the supply chain”.

Nigel Parkes, managing director of Pallet-Track, added: “The initiatives that Matthew Kibble is taking epitomise the entrepreneurial spirit of our pallet network. The business is proactively creating interest in the sector and encouraging job seekers to consider logistics as a career where there are real opportunities for driven and hard-working young people.

“Logistics is not a soft option but the rewards are there, our business offers good terms and conditions for the right candidates who show the right attitude and aptitude to the variety of roles within the industry and help take the sector forward in a commercial and sustainable way.”
“This kind of initiative also explodes myths about the nature of the business – it is no longer the preserve of men as more women are actively blazing a trail in key roles and taking their rightful place on the boards of companies, including our own with the recent appointment of Lisa Burrows as our operations director. Lisa forged her own path into the role she now holds, but modern apprenticeships are a more formal gateway to a career of real variety and choice.

“We are happy to support Matthew Kibble and the Think Logistics team in a fantastic initiative for young people,” he added.

If you would like to find out more about the Think Logistics, you can go to –