The Component ConundrumIt’s fair to say, these are challenging times. That’s not to say that things haven’t been tough before, but as the world battles climate change, rising living costs, and war, things are uncertain and unsettling for many businesses and those working in them.The component shortage has hit the commercial vehicles industry hard, and for an industry already struggling with a micro-chip shortage, the impact of the war in Ukraine has further tightened the noose on businesses running and maintaining commercial vehicles. OEM’s are reliant on suppliers for components and raw materials such as aluminium steel and palladium from Ukraine and Russia, and even those businesses still operating in Ukraine, have erratic supply. Business leaders take actionAccording to an article in BDO, business leaders should be continually monitoring supply, strengthening their cash position and be mindful of labour supply and those affected by the war. A lack of spares and hire vehicles has meant that many businesses have had to rely even more on their labour to troubleshoot and engineer their way through vehicle availability than ever before.According to CommercialMotor, HGV registrations continue to decline in registrations. The industry is struggling to recover from the pandemic due to component and raw material shortages and is still 17.1% below the same period in 2019. Whilst the figures aren’t all doom and gloom, SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes states ‘Despite the market’s post-pandemic recovery continuing to be frustrated by supply chain shortages and disruptions, HGV operators considering their next fleet investments are encouraged to move early to secure the new vehicles that will meet their business needs’.Labour supplyThe same can also be said of the demand for skilled labour. The shortage of people qualified to carry out skilled work is well publicised. In a recent report by the REC and KMPG, engineering is the second-highest job category carrying vacancies (second only to Hotel & Catering), experiencing a significant jump from the same period in 2021. Its also important to consider that vacancies aren’t just high in permanent recruitment, shortages also exist in the temporary workforce which often supports gaps in short- and long-term staff availability.Navigating this can be a minefield, and often takes a clearly thought through recruitment strategy to support a sustainable and motivated workforce. We’d love to help you.