Coconut Creatives’ client news: Driver Hire franchisees are excelling despite the economic downturn
According to the Recruitment & Employment Confederation, despite the effects of recession, total turnover in the UK recruitment industry is almost £20bn a year, which means Driver Hire’s potential market place is enormous.
Even measured against its own 25-year plus track record, 2010/11 was a good year for Driver Hire. “Our business grew by nearly 23% last year,” says Chris Chidley, Driver Hire’s CEO. “From the perspective of many individual franchisees, the picture looks even better. At our Summer Conference in July 2011, we presented 25 offices with ‘best-ever’ annual sales awards, a remarkable performance.”
Driver Hire is one of the UK’s most established franchise networks. This specialist provider of recruitment services has almost 100 offices around the UK and every day of the year supplies over 3,000 personnel, mainly drivers and other logistics staff, to organisations in the public and private sector.
Franchisees like Roy McLellan at Driver Hire Dundee are still seeing strong growth, even in the face of an uncertain UK economy. Turnover in mid-2011 is already 25% up on last year, when the business turned over £1.3m. As Roy explains, the economy actually works in favour of the Driver Hire business model: “It’s all about listening to your customers and delivering a service that responds to their specific needs. Right now, with unpredictable order books and rising fuel costs, they need to find ways of reducing their fixed costs and coping with varying demand. We can talk to them about the flexibility and cost benefits of using temps and our systems and selection processes mean they can be confident of getting the very best staff.”
Another development in the past year has delivered a new, complementary revenue stream for Driver Hire franchisees. The Driver CPC is a new, compulsory qualification that all HGV drivers must now gain and then maintain with ongoing training. Spotting an opportunity, Driver Hire gained formal accreditation and developed an extensive suite of Driver CPC training modules.
Franchisees attended training courses and most now actively sell training services alongside their traditional recruitment services. The new initiative has been so successful that Driver Hire is now one of the UK’s largest providers of the training, with its franchisees and other trainers having delivered over 55,000 hours of training.
All of this makes Driver Hire an attractive investment opportunity for anyone considering setting up their own business. In the first half of 2011, nine new franchisees have joined the network, in locations as far apart as Inverness and Plymouth.
Could a Driver Hire franchise be right for you? Well, Rowan Pritchard achieved the remarkable feat of becoming Driver Hire Franchisee of the Year in 2010, within just a couple of years of buying his franchise, in Romford. Here’s what he says about his experience:
“Recruitment is a unique business. I hadn’t been involved in it before I came into Driver Hire but the training I received from Head Office helped me enormously. I don’t consider myself to be a natural sales person, but I firmly believe in the Driver Hire brand and so I’m confident going out and promoting it. I then back that up with a personal commitment to deliver what I promise.
“I can honestly say that I love being in this business. If you’re looking for variety and constant challenge this is the place to be. No two days are ever the same. I still get real personal satisfaction from knowing that I’ve helped a customer and at the same time found work for one of my candidates. I’d recommend it to anyone.”