New drivers needed: Mercer Logistik breaks new ground

With 15 vehicles, Mercer Logistik is on the road for our Mercer Stendal operation as well as other clients throughout Germany. The majority of Mercer Logistik’s drivers have been part of the team for many years. Lisa Blum, team lead for truck dispatching, knows what this means for the team eventually. “In the coming years, some of them will go into well-deserved retirement. The average age of our drivers is currently 50 years old.”

With the known shortage of professional drivers, Mercer Logistik decided to enter uncharted territory, enabling young people with the desire to become professional drivers to obtain their driver’s licenses and associated qualifications.

Dennis Wiegel is the first to embark on this new path together with Mercer Logistik. Others should, and must, follow. Dennis is 28 years young and trained as an automotive mechatronics technician. He is also no stranger to Mercer Logistik, as his father has worked for the company for many years.

“He approached us,” Lisa Blum reports. With Mercer Logistik as a potential future employer for him, Dennis was eager to follow in his father’s footsteps. The only thing he lacked to do so? A professional truck driver’s license. However, after extensive research, Dennis’ way was paved.

Since January 1, 2023, he has been an employee of Mercer Logistik. For this, Dennis was required to complete the accelerated basic qualification, as well as both theory lessons and driving lessons for the truck driver’s license.

When neither school nor driving lessons were scheduled, Dennis drove along with colleagues from Mercer Logistik to gain knowledge of a driver’s day-to-day. Having his colleagues on hand meant they could share advice in the moment and happily answer his questions.

As part of the accelerated basic qualification, Dennis completed five training modules, with additional driving lessons in Perleberg, and passed the test before the Chamber of Industry and Commerce on March 1. The young driver also passed the theory test for driving license class C/CE and the two practical tests with flying colors — on his first attempt — and has been taking the seat behind the wheel of the semi-trailer truck since the end of March.

The driver’s license training was fully financed by Mercer Logistik. In return, the 28-year-old has committed himself to the company for 3 years. As his knowledge grows, Dennis is currently gaining practical experience in local transport to build his confidence further before assisting in long-distance transport.

“Management was immediately positive about this idea, even more so with the results,” says Lisa Blum, pleased with the support. Over the next few years, work will gradually be done to rejuvenate the driver pool.