The transport sector is a major employer in Northamptonshire, accounting for around 8% of the jobs. A large proportion of these are driving positions, thanks to the number of warehouse and distribution operations in the county.
Easy access to the M1 makes Northamptonshire a good location for haulage firms, third-party logistics businesses and online retailers to have bases. Tesco, John Lewis Partnership, Sainsbury's, Panasonic, Baxter Healthcare, White Company and Travis Perkins are among the companies to have established warehouses in the area.
That has created demand for driving staff, as there are high volumes of deliveries to be made. Some of the businesses directly employ HGV, 7.5-tonne and van drivers, while others prefer to use the services of specialist haulage companies. All of them need to hire temporary staff to cover for holidays, sickness and busy periods, and use driving recruitment agencies to find workers with the right licences and good references.
There are also employment opportunities for drivers in other industries in Northamptonshire. There are a number of local courier services, while construction company Sir Robert McAlpine's plant department is in Kettering.
Salaries for drivers in Northamptonshire are typically in line with the national averages for such roles. Multi-drop van drivers are paid around £15,500 a year, while LGV Class 1 drivers earn between £25,000 and £33,000 depending on whether they work day or night shifts.