Is the delivery boom here to stay?
As demand for delivery to our doorsteps has exploded, we have seen lots of drivers picking up delivery work. But is this just linked to the lockdowns, or does this mark a longer term shift in delivery trends?
We spoke to INSHUR co-founder and chief operating officer David Daiches to understand how delivery driving has changed during the pandemic, and to get his view on what the future might look like for delivery drivers.
We’ve also put together some stats which show the volume of work that drivers can expect this year.
How delivery has changed
David says one of the big impacts of the pandemic has been drivers going from transporting people to food and parcels.
“When the first lockdown happened, the number of trips through Uber and other platforms obviously shrank very quickly. Drivers then moved to working on other platforms like Deliveroo and Amazon.
“A whole new market opened up – people who used to go to the supermarket for their weekly shop found that online delivery was quite convenient. That helped push up the number of delivery drivers in the UK, with more and more people relying on deliveries.”
Working from home has also changed people’s buying habits.
“People aren’t going out to lunch with their team any more – instead they might be getting food delivered a few times a week. The same goes for deliveries.
“Before people would get their Amazon parcels at the weekend. Now they’re at their desk and they’re thinking: I’ll get that now, and I need next day delivery. So all of that has contributed to a huge increase in the need for more delivery drivers.”
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In cities across the UK, independent shops have closed down and bigger stores are moving out.
David points to the Apple store as just one example of how shopping is changing . Nowadays if people go to an Apple store, it’s like a showroom, in the same way you might buy a car. You choose your product in store, and get it ordered to your home.
David says more people are also prepared to give delivery work a go, whether that’s students earning extra money through food delivery, or other people looking to delivery as a good way to make some extra money.
“The gig economy is moving to this flexible way of working. People can do a few hours a week, or work across multiple platforms. Sometimes they’ll do a bit of delivery and also drive with Uber. We believe that that’s the way people are going to continue to work in the future.”
What the numbers tell us
Not everyone who took on delivery work during the pandemic has stayed in the job. Last summer, many people working as delivery drivers only did this in the short-term, and went back to their jobs in shops or hospitality when everything began to re-open.
If you’re looking to take on delivery work, companies like Yodel and JustEat are advertising lots of jobs right now.
With more and more people happy to pay for the convenience of takeaways and online shopping delivered to their door, this suggests the boom in delivery is here to stay.
The UK delivery and courier market is estimated to be worth £13bn. It’s made up of almost 10,000 businesses which employ around 112,000 people.
At INSHUR, we offer quick and easy delivery insurance on your terms. To find out more, visit INSHUR today.