Supply Chain Managers have a full plate, including finding Supply Chain talent. They must oversee inbound and outbound inventory, manage warehouse space, consider order processing, handle employee complaints, report to stakeholders, supervise new system implementation and address the looming skills gap.
Their duties are integral to the future of supply chain management, and out of these issues, a key problem arises. Attracting the right talent will be key to success in the future of supply chain management, and Supply Chain Managers need to take notice today.
The Future of Supply Chain Skills Gap Will Reach Critical Mass by 2020
The talent and skills gap affects the manufacturing and supply chain industries more than almost any other occupation in the U.S. As more workers reach retirement age, the burden of the supply chain skills gap will undermine the future of supply chain management.
Unfortunately, the major companies, such as Amazon and Walmart, have already enacted new standards to attract and retain new talent. At the current rate, says Jennifer McKevitt of Supply Chain Dive, the supply chain skills gap will result in major problems for order fulfillment and lead to increased costs by 2020.
Advancement of Processes and Systems Is Key to the Future of Supply Chain Management
The supply chain skills gap can feel impossible to overcome. These skills gaps were forged in a time when manufacturing and supply chain management were seen as dirty, unforgiving professions. Although that narrative has changed, part of this problem goes back to poor awareness of and interest in the field, says McKevitt.
Those interested in the field may not even know they are interested in supply chain management due to lack of awareness and information about the industry. Supply chain executives and leaders need to refocus their efforts on educating the next generation of the true state of modern supply chain management and processes. This includes emphasizing the use of digital systems and advanced technologies, like big data, robotics, machine learning, and more.
How Developers and Supply Chain Executives Can Protect the Future of Supply Chain Management
Although the supply chain skills gap could undercut the future of supply chain success, supply chain leaders can take a few additional steps to improve the visibility of their companies to those who have not yet selected a career. Students, people seeking a career change, and many others could benefit from changes in how the industry is perceived.
As explained by Doug Reed, MHL Executive Vice President, reports MHI Solutions, supply chain executives should make this possible by following these steps:
- Implement a strong change management plan.
- Leverage the power of emotion and vision, as well as logic, to appeal to current and potential team members, says Yossi Sheffi of The Wall Street Journal.
- Upgrade systems to use automation and new technologies.
- Make data and technology the focal points of your organization.
- Remember to include a focus on soft skills, like communications, teamwork, and leadership skills.
- Enable on-the-job learning and offer career advancement opportunities.
- Work with educators to ensure the same language is used for job skills in the classroom and real world.
- Be visible to students!
Find the Right Talent by Creating Attractive Processes and Using Technologies Today
Guaranteeing the future of supply chain success requires the ability to ensure an apt, engaged workforce. Supply chain leaders and Warehouse Managers that seek to stay competitive and meet the growing demands of consumers must find and attract the right talent. This will be key to filling the supply chain talent gap.