The impact of the logistics industry in the UK

The impact of the logistics industry in the UK

Frontier’s latest report, commissioned by Amazon and supported by Logistics UK, has been published today. It provides an independent analysis of the economic, social and environmental impact of the logistics industry in the UK.

Our study finds that the logistics industry is one of the fastest growing in the UK, having doubled since 2012 and added 190,000 workers between 2019 and 2021 alone. As of end 2021, the industry employs 1.25m workers across the UK, with the North West of England, Yorkshire and the Humber, East Midlands, West Midlands, East of England and South East of England all accounting for around 10% of employment in the sector. Much of the growth of the industry is in high priority areas for the government’s levelling up agenda.

Looking in more detail at the characteristics of logistics jobs, a new independent survey commissioned as part of our study finds that logistics workers are on balance satisfied with their job. The industry also provide routes to management jobs for those that did not complete higher education: an estimated 35,000 people in the sector were promoted into management jobs in 2021, and two thirds of managers in logistics do not have a university degree, compared to fewer than half in the wider economy.

Local areas with a high density of logistics jobs have grown faster than other areas of the UK in both GDP per capita and overall employment, despite starting conditions that were not especially favourable. Our econometrics analysis indicates that new logistics sites lead to additional employment in other industries: for example a new site employing around 1,500 people could be linked to a further 1,000 new jobs in the local area.

Frontier’s report also shows that decarbonising logistics vehicles and buildings would make a significant contribution to the UK’s target of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Scaling up current and planned initiatives to adopt low- or zero-emission vehicles in particular would reduce UK carbon emissions by around 24 MtCO2-equivalent, around 20% of all annual UK transport emissions.

In our report, we also provide recommendations to policymakers and the logistics industry at large to promote and support the growth of the logistics sector and its contribution to levelling up and net zero.

We have also provided an interactive data visualisation on the Logistics UK website, which allows users to explore the footprint of logistics for each parliamentary constituency.

Please click here to read the full report.

For more information, please contact us on or at  +44 (0) 20 7031 7000.