Smart Motorways: What you need to know

We’re seeing more and more smart motorways across the UK, updating the way we commute on main routes up and down the country. But many people are still learning about what’s involved with driving on a smart motorway – so what are our top tips for driving safely on a smart motorway?

Never drive in a lane with a red X above it – the lane is temporarily closed for safety reasons, so make sure you change lanes immediately.

Solid white lines indicate a hard shoulder – these lanes should be used as a traditional hard shoulder unless signs indicate otherwise.

Keep the speed limit – The speed limit can vary and will be indicated by signs, so be aware of any changes at all times. If not speed is shown drive at the national speed limit.

The emergency refuge areas are for emergencies only. They must not be used as general parking or stopping areas.

Smart motorways are improving road safety. Highways England statistics show that journey reliability has improved by 22% and personal injury accidents have reduced by half.

For more information about our latest driving jobs, or to find out how Flexistaff can support your business, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

What to do in your last week at work

The last week at work before you start a new job is odd, there’s no escaping it. Clearly there’s no point in you starting anything new, and it’s easy to feel demotivated and ready to get away from your old employer. But what should you make sure you do in your last week at work to have the best impact for yourself and your soon to be previous employer?

Stay on track. At this late stage, it can be easy to put less effort in – But don’t forget you may still be relying on your old employer for a reference! Continue to work hard and be a team player.

Check your handover. A handover document is always going to be useful to the company you leave behind – Be diligent in putting it together and try to be as helpful as possible.

Build connections. You never know when you might call on old colleagues or managers in your career in the future; gather contact details where possible, be polite, remain hard working, and ensure you continue to make a good impression.

Be dignified. Although you might be counting down the minutes until you leave, a little humility goes a long way! Be kind and helpful at all times.

For more information about our latest vacancies, or to find out Flexistaff can support your business, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Know Your Manual Handling

Good manual handling is incredibly important, particularly in more physical roles, to ensure good health. It’s easy to get it wrong and cause permanent damage to yourself; here’s our top tips for good manual handling practise.

Plan it in advance. Don’t just go straight in there! Check if there’s any obstructions and plan where you are going to move the load before you start moving it, making sure your route is clear and appropriate.

Think about your feet and posture. Make sure your feet are spaced apart to ensure good balance. Is the ground beneath you even? Make sure your stance is comfortable. You may need to move your feet during the lift to maintain a good posture.

Keep a tight grip! We recommend a hook lift rather than keeping your fingers flat for a less strenuous lift. The lift should be smooth; hug the load close to your body to avoid any straining. Just the load after you’ve put it down rather than risking an injury.

For more information about our latest vacancies, or to find out more about how Flexistaff can support your warehouse business, contact Flexistaff on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Name That Forklift!

Given the warehouse is a diverse place, it’s not hugely surprising that we often find different types of forklift in operation. So what are the different types of forklifts and what is their purpose?

Counterbalance

The most common type of forklift, the forks are fitted at the front of the truck and are fairly straightforward to operate. They can be petrol, diesel or electrically operated. Some designs are 3 wheel, meaning that the truck has maximum manoeuvrability.

Reach Truck

Reach truck forklifts are designed to reach into racking and as such can lift significant weights to great heights whilst working in a small warehouse environment if necessary. They work best inside on even surfaces, due to their low under-carriage.

Pump Truck

Hand and power pallet trucks are used to move products fitted to pallets in the warehouse. They work best on smooth surfaces and are an easy way to move products quickly.

Sideloader

Sideloaders, as the name suggests, pick up loads from the side, and are particularly effective at handling long or wide products.

For more information about our warehouse vacancies, or to find out more about how Flexistaff can support your warehouse business, contact Flexistaff on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Driving Abroad: What you need to know

As a long-distance driver, it’s likely you’ll be required to drive in other countries during your career. Seems simple enough but it’s vital you prepare properly for driving in a new country. Here’s our top tips.

Are you on the “right” side of the road? It may seem obvious but if you’re having to drive on a different side of the road than you are used to it can be strange and disorientating. Make sure you concentrate and take extra care when having to overtake other vehicles if appropriate.

What are the rules? Don’t assume that the country you’re driving in follows the same rules as the UK – make sure you’ve checked the relevant highway code and you’re aware of any differences in road rules that you should be aware of.

Plan in advance. Consider your journey in advance and have a think about any stops you might need to make in your route. Whether it be to re-fuel or take a rest, it’s best to plan your stops in advance when in an unfamiliar environment.

For more information about our latest driving vacancies, or to find out how Flexistaff can support your business, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

How are forklifts improving for the modern warehouse?

There’s no denying why forklifts are a vital tool for our warehouses, and the good news is they are improving all the time. So what improvements can we expect to see in forklifts this year?

New forklift designs are saving time and getting easier to use. Palm steering systems, double pedal systems and dual joysticks are making forklift operators lives easier when it comes to driving up efficiency. You might also find adjustable and lower seating and other flexible options on new forklifts.

It’s all about space. Warehouses need space efficiency, that’s a given – and designers are working on developing forklifts that can stack more effectively and maximise space. With the improvement of technology comes the ability to streamline design of forklifts too, meaning trucks need less space for manoeuvring.

Electric is the future. The growing efficiency of electric forklift trucks means we’ll see far more electric vehicles in the future, rather than gas or petrol/diesel models. Electric forklifts are much more environmentally friendly meaning they meet the needs of growing warehouse sustainability.

 For more information about our forklift vacancies, or to find out how Flexistaff can support your warehouse, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Step Up your Job Search Today

There are plenty of ways to search and find a job, but with job searching being a big task, how can jobseekers ensure they go about it the right way? Read our top suggestions below.

Use job boards in their entirety. Not only can you use the online job boards to search for all jobs available, most offer tailoring solutions to target your search effectively, so you can search for jobs based on salary, location, education level, and more. Plus you can set up daily email alerts, so the job adverts you’re looking for are sent straight to your inbox. Perfect!

What’s the job title? You may be searching for a specific role, but bear in mind that different companies may name a similar or same job role in different ways. Consider this in your search to make sure you don’t miss that perfect opportunity.

What sector? When filling in your profile on a job board site, make sure you don’t limit your preferred sectors, as this could lead to your CV being overlooked when hiring managers or recruiters search for CVs. Keep it broad.

Adjust as necessary. You may find that your searches can lead to irrelevant results, or that a search stops bringing up the type of jobs you’re looking for. Make sure you adjust your searches accordingly so you don’t miss out.

For more information about job searching and our current vacancies, or to find out how Flexistaff can support your business, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Drive Safely in the Rain – Our Top Tips

Clearly based in the UK the one thing you can expect from the weather is rain. For those who drive for a living, it’s important that they remain safe whilst on the road during rainy conditions. Here’s how.

Slow down! The speed limit is designed for ideal conditions – rain is certainly not ideal. Your braking distance will be increased – stay safe and slow down, leaving plenty of space between yourself and the vehicle in front.

Headlights? There’s no harm in putting your headlights on if visibility is low – and rain can sometimes bring darker conditions. So shine a light!

Watch out for hydroplaning. The technical term for losing grip of the road, it’s more likely you’ll experience this in the rain. If you start to hydroplane, lift your foot off the accelerator and steer straight.

Stay alert. It’s easy to drive almost subconsciously, especially if you’re driving along a known route – make sure you stay alert at all times.

For more information on our latest driver vacancies, or to find out how Flexistaff can support your business, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Most common forklift operation mistakes

Forklift operation mistakes can be very costly. Regular training and maintenance can go a long way to preventing mistakes when operating your forklift, but also having a good understanding of the sort of mistakes that can be made and their consequences is important too – here’s our list of mistakes to watch out for.

The load – Loads that are too heavy or unsecured can be a real danger to both those operating the forklift and pedestrians. Make sure you know exactly how much weight your forklift can take and always secure the load properly.

Get inspecting! Missing inspections and maintenance on your forklift can be very costly, leading to broken vehicles way before their time. Make sure forklifts are regularly inspected and train teams to make sure they check their vehicles regularly.

Lack of care. It’s vital that forklift operators use their equipment properly – Speeding can be hugely dangerous for pedestrians, as well as a lack of attention to surroundings. Forklift operators must be diligent at all times, paying attention to signage and safe routes.

For more information about our forklift vacancies, or to find out how Flexistaff can support your business, contact us on 0844 556 2916 or office@flexistaffuk.com.

Flexistaff Solutions Ltd

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