Do you feel that it’s difficult to find supply chain professionals who have the combination of technical skills, industry-specific understanding, real-world business experience and soft skills that you want in your organization? You’re not the only one!
Why is it so hard to find the right people in supply chain these days? Much of the problem stems from the growing complexity of the job.
Modern-day supply chain management is about much more than coordinating the physical movement of goods from one point to another. It requires deep knowledge of planning, sourcing, manufacturing, distribution and order management functions. It also requires procurement expertise, supplier management, knowledge of international trade trends and regulations, information technology skills and the ability to manage customer relationships.
While positions in customer service, transportation management and procurement are relatively easy to fill, the positions in mid-management are the ones most likely left open. While many companies have focused on hiring entry-level talent from universities, there is a severe shortage of mid-level managers. To complicate matters, baby boomers are starting to retire and there is a lack of talent that can easily move up to replace them.
Look at your company. How does it compare? Do you have a good influx of entry-level talent and a strong team in senior management but a glaring lack in middle management? How can you overcome this talent deficit?
It’s important to identify what skill-sets your employees have, what they need to have and where are they lacking. Then you need to choose what kind of training and development program you can implement to help your employees get up to speed.
- Some companies, including about 70 percent of the Fortune 500 companies, are forming their own internal supply chain “academies” or corporate universities. Other have at least supply chain management talent development plans
- Organizations such as APICS offer a number of short courses and non-degree that can help your employees learn about new best practices, become super users and take over leadership in a particular area within the company.
Not only will this help close the talent deficit and make your current employees more productive, it will reduce turnover and the effects of attrition. It’s been proven across various industries that the best employees are seeking a clear definition of their career paths and want opportunities for cross training and skill advancement.
Implementing a training program of any size and scope will give your supply chain employees at all levels access to the new techniques, ideas and skills that are needed in the modern supply chain environment. But what can you do if you need skilled supply chain employees in Denver now—not just in the future? Contact ZDA Supply Chain Professionals, where we keep up with the latest developments and requirements in our specialty industry.