Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Graham Hurdle blog: 21 July - Are young graduates ready-made for your business with no further training?
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Graham Hurdle blog: 21 July - Are young graduates ready-made for your business with no further training?

Date: 21 July 2015

Graham Hurdle is managing director of E-Training World

We all know that young drivers pose a serious safety risk to businesses. Some company's I've spoken to cite the basic driving test as being the problem, complaining its not rigorous enough and doesn't set a high enough standard.

Yet the driving test does exactly what it says on the tin! It ensures candidates reach the minimum standard to drive safely. It doesn't mean a driver is as good as they can be, and requires no further training.

Why is it though, that many companies will take a graduate who, for example, knows the basics of Microsoft Excel and will send them on an advanced excel training course. Yet they won't send the same individual, who only knows the basics of driving, on an advanced driving course. If they are in a field-based role, the latter is far more important.

On thing is for sure, if something goes wrong on a spreadsheet no-one will be killed or seriously injured, the reputation of the company is unlikely to be damaged and it's far less expensive to resolve.

The flip side of the argument, of course, is that maybe the basic driving test should be harder.

If this was the case, the likelihood is it would result in less young drivers passing, or even taking, the test.

That would limit the number of people joining companies who are able to drive. It could also mean we have more unlicensed and uninsured drivers on our roads, and in their desperation to recruit people we may find businesses looking at foreign drivers, who would not have passed the 'more rigorous' UK driving test either.

So we're no further forwards.

But is the driving test so unfit for its purpose? Many people argue it's not right for today's driving conditions. But as the traffic and driving standards evolve, so does the driving test. After all, candidates take their test on real UK roads, in real driving conditions and in modern, technically equipped vehicles. The test may not alter too much, but the conditions of the test certainly do.

In my opinion, businesses should stop placing any blame for unprepared young drivers on the driving test. Instead, we should all accept that all young people need their driving skills developing, in the same way they are trained in other areas to become the 'rounded employee' that every company is looking for.

Ask any driver trainer if their pupils learn from them and the answer is yes! Our own feedback confirms that over 95% of drivers completing our online driver training courses and assessments say they have learnt more than one new thing and found the course useful and enjoyable.

The upshot is, if you're investing in new recruits, add driver improvement to their induction training. It may be instrumental in getting them to their other courses safely!