Young coach and bus drivers: A fresh approach?

How to attract young people as coach and bus drivers has long been a thorny topic.

Before trying to address it, consider why they do not see it as a desirable occupation in the first place. A barrier for coach operators could be a lack of certainty around rest days. More than one business has addressed that through a rota system.

While the precise duty content is still not known under that arrangement, the days employees will work are. That gives certainty. Other operators provide staff with work tickets digitally as far ahead of time as possible.

Predicting how many drivers will be required on any day is difficult, but a pattern can be derived from previous years using management software.

Doing that will take time, but if it delivers what some potential recruits want, it will bring benefits. A coach operator in London that rotas its drivers has a waiting list. That permits it to be picky when the time to recruit comes around.

A further sticking point may also be rectified relatively easily. Some operators do not recruit below the age of 25 due to insurance restrictions.

Whether that is a legitimate barrier is unclear. But such constraints can be negotiated, as many companies have demonstrated. Doing so requires a conversation with your insurer. It may result in a slight premium enhancement. But it can be done.

Either, or both, of the above can open new talent pools. By the age of 25, many people have found a career. Attracting them from then on will be difficult.

Lots is changing in the industry. The approach to young people as coach and bus drivers may need to become part of that.