THE UK is seeing a shortage in Driving Instructors alongside lorry drivers and prison officers. 

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) stated that driving instructors are one of the most in-demand roles, due to a backlog of tests, Bill Plant Driving School have shared their top tips for getting started:

Tom Hixon, Head of Instructor Support at Bill Plant Driving School, said: “It’s unsurprising to see driving instructors up there with prison officers and truck drivers, given all we’ve heard about the lack of HGV drivers, as the most in-demand jobs.

"We’ve noticed a real surge in demand for driving lessons and tests over the last 18 months, with the current wait time for a test sitting at up to 14 weeks. There has also been a reported 420,000 cancelled driving tests in the backlog and 4000 new 17 year olds per day unable to start their lessons over lockdown periods.

"The number of new instructors has also remained relatively static, as the DVSA exams required to become a driving instructor were also derailed at the same time lessons were suspended, meaning demand has massively outstripped supply.

"While becoming a driving instructor is a relatively straightforward process, the training is very extensive, to ensure that only the highest quality instructors are out there safely delivering lessons to students up and down the country. The process can be done within months but could take up to a year, it all depends on how much time you put in. 

"The great thing about working as a driving instructor is that it is flexible, and you decide when and where you work.

"On average, you can expect to earn around £35,000 per year, before tax. This is based on 40 hours of tuition per week after your fuel and other business costs."

Training to become a driving instructor has three main steps:

Firstly, you must meet the eligibility criteria set out by the DVSA. Instructors must be over the age of 21 and have held a full licence for at least three years. You’ll need to have a criminal record check, and once this has come back clear, you can start the ADI (Approved Driving Instructor) application process through the government website.

You’ll need your driving licence number, and details of any driving disqualifications, motoring or non-motoring offences. You may have your application refused if you have six or more points on your licence, have been banned from driving, or have convictions for any non-motoring offences. Secondly, you’ll need to undertake both theory and practical training under the guidance of a Qualified Driving Instructor or through a Driving Instructor Training Establishment. This training is split into three parts.

The first step is called the Part 1 test, which is a theory test that takes around one hour and 45 minutes. Much like a standard theory test, you’ll have to answer multiple choice questions and thereafter you will be tested on your hazard perception skills too.

The Part 2 test is a practical driving test and takes around an hour. You’ll need to do an eyesight test, and answer five vehicle safety questions before you start. The driving elements are similar to a learner practical test, as you will drive around in various road conditions, including motorways, to demonstrate expert handling of the controls and show you can follow the correct procedures. You’ll be asked to carry out extensive manoeuvres including parallel park and an emergency stop. You will then need to demonstrate that you can drive independently. 

When you have completed Part 1 and Part 2, you’ll then undertake Part 3 training, which is the core of the training process. This section focuses on your ability to instruct, and teaches you aspects including lesson planning, risk management and teaching and learning strategies. Once your Part 3 training has been completed, we highly recommend trainees to select a trainee licence. This means a training establishment will sponsor you for 6 months, so that you gain vital practical experience teaching learners, alongside generating a weekly income, before taking the test, substantially increasing your chances of qualifying as an ADI (Approved Driving Instructor)

Once all your exams are passed, you can apply for an ADI (Approved Driving Instructor) badge from the DVSA, which costs £300. Once qualified, you’ll only have to renew your registration every four years.”