At RSM Commercial Driver Training we have seen a steady increase in women looking to get into what has been a traditionally male-dominated transport industry over recent years.
As an employer we are proud to have an excellent female HGV, LGV and PCV driving instructor among our ranks; Treena Smith, who provides first rate driver training for our clients with an excellent pass-rate.
Of our clients, as a commercial driver training provider, we have seen a steady increase in women on our driver training courses. These female drivers are training with us in order to not only advance their driving skills and pass a test, but to take ownership of roles and responsibilities for themselves. Some come to us to enhance their current skills and expand their career prospects by taking on new responsibilities, whilst other have come to us with the specific purpose of pursuing a new career as a commercial driver.
In recent years the increase in females breaking into the transport industry has been supported by a Transport For London scheme called ‘Women In Transport’. In this article Violetta Lynch of WIT talks about the scheme, what it has achieved and how it is encouraging women to get into the industry.
In November 2014 we launched 100 Years of Women in Transport (100 YOWIT) to celebrate a century of women working in the transport industry. Two hundred representatives from across the industry came together to mark their commitment to improving diversity across the board. 100 YOWIT has celebrated the contribution women have made and continue to make to the industry and has aimed to inspire, engage and motivate women currently working within the industry and the next generation of potential transport professionals.
The programme has achieved an unprecedented amount since it launched – it broke a Guinness World Record for National Women in Engineering Day 2015, received international recognition from the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank, and was included as a key case study in the DfT’s Infrastructure and Skills Strategy which launched earlier this year.
We have also run a packed programme of events, which has included insight sessions with inspiring speakers, debates, panel discussions, speed mentoring and networking evenings. We have also held an annual Bring your daughter to work day, a nation-wide schools debating competition and a Teacher Industrial Partnership Scheme.
In order to build networks across the industry, we launched an informal networking scheme in 2015 called Coffee Roulette. Participants are randomly paired once a month and then meet for a coffee at a time to talk about their role, area and experiences of working in the industry. Feedback has been great, with those taking part commenting on how much they have enjoyed meeting people they would otherwise never have had the opportunity to meet.
Due to the energy and momentum behind the campaign, and increasing engagement throughout the industry, the programme re-launched as Women in Transport in May 2016, rolling into its legacy phase. Our vision is to leave the lasting legacy of a diverse workforce which reflects the population we serve.
We will continue to build our pan-industry network, which now has over 12,500 people from across 270 organisations and will run a full programme of events in the coming months to further engage and inspire those working in our industry as well as young people.
For us, inspiring young people is especially important, as it is their beliefs and outlook that will shape the future of our industry and of our country. To this end, we have created a schools toolkit, Inspiring a Generation, with the objectives of engaging, inspiring and motivating the next generation by clearly articulating the broader role of transport and its vital role in society, and by showcasing the vast range of careers across the industry.
We would encourage everyone working in the transport industry to use our toolkit when engaging with young people, as supporting material for talks, careers advice sessions or when attending careers fairs.
Aims of Women in Transport
Our aim is to inspire current and future generations of transport workers. We’re doing this by developing the workforce and inspiring the next generation.
Developing the workforce by:
- Attracting more women by highlighting the careers on offer
- Showcasing the contributions women have made, and continue to make in the industry
- Providing opportunities for personal development and progression at all levels
- Establishing an industry-wide network as a legacy of continued improvement and development
- Running inspirational and thought-provoking events
Inspiring the next generation through:
- Tackling the lack of understanding about what the transport industry stands for
- Demonstrating why transport can be for anyone and everyone
- Education, particularly of young people about the variety of roles on offer
- Promoting a young people and schools engagement programme
Through development and inspiration, we hope to:
- Support our industry and improve the way we respond to new challenges (including unprecedented levels of growth and development in London and across the UK)
- Build our brand as the industry of choice
- Contribute to London and the UK as a whole
Women in Transport
Other useful resources:
As a commercial driving school we actively encourage and train women to drive commercial vehicles including LGV’s, HGV’s, PCV’s (Passenger Carrying Vehicles) such as coaches buses and mini-buses, as well as towing trailers and horseboxes.
If you would you like to learn to drive a LGV, HGV or PCV, to tow a trailer, or you are interested in starting a career in commercial driving, get in touch with our team for some professional advice on how to get started? – Contact us today!
Call us on: 01268 695 909
Alternatively, use the Contact Us page to submit your details and obtain a free vocational pack containing the relevant forms and information to apply for your provisional licence and start your commercial driving career. You can also use the Apply Now page to request a booking for your driver training.