The WFC Group Blog

Tap Into Tech to Meet the Demand for Skilled Supply Chain Talent

Posted by Neil Shah on Feb 26, 2019 10:45:00 AM

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As 2018 was drawing to a close, Gartner Inc. asked senior organizational leaders from around the globe what they saw as the biggest emerging risk to their businesses.

Although the year started with high concerns around the effects of cloud computing and economic instability, shortage of talent sprung to the top in Q4's Emerging Risks Survey for a startling 63 percent of respondents. Seeing this covered on SupplyChainBrain, it's obvious that the growing gap of talent and demand weighs heavily on logistics, especially given the looming brain drain of retiring boomers.

The Dangers of Supply Talent Shortage

While company success might be measured in growth and expansion, the pressure on employees will grow without fresh talent to share the work. Morale and subsequently retention are bound to face challenges, compounding ongoing efforts to grow the employee base. Organizations will need to keep in mind the needs of their existing workforce while simultaneously marketing the company to a candidate audience that will need some level of instruction to suit the evolving needs of the industry.

3 Ways Workforce Management Solutions Support Talent's Needs

All is not lost, but some of the keys to future success may be hidden. Workforce visibility will likely become one of the best solutions for supply chain managers. In a recent piece for, Kronos's Robert O'Dwyer suggests visibility into labor data will determine which logistics companies will win the war for talent. Modern workforce management providers like Kronos grant organizations more visibility from the top down, hitting the needs of three key audiences.

1. Efficiently empowers current employees:

When members of a workforce feel seen and understood, they are more likely to stick around.  Supply chains leaders can't afford to lose their existing talent. An effective workforce management system puts the needs of employees into sharp focus. For many, that means offering the ability to manage schedules and benefits like paid time off with greater flexibility, including the ability to request time off from their mobile devices to even automated approvals for shift swaps when needed.

2. Demonstrates commitment to the values of emerging talent:

Companies are facing the need to appeal to higher technological standards of younger digital natives. Every step, from the promotion of career opportunities on social media to the application and on-boarding process is an opportunity for businesses to show their contemporary face, and their hiring experience should carry through smoothly to being a valued employee. Having a fully integrated system from application to benefits election, daily timekeeping and benefits management, all with a mobile-first on-demand mentality will showcase a company's dedication to meeting the newer expectations of our latest generations.

3. Puts actionable data into the hands of managers:

One of the biggest gaps facing logistics is skilled enough labor for middle management positions. Improvements in workforce technologies have made it easier to track and measure employee performance, shifting the responsibilities of managers into workforce developers who draw on softer skills. This may allow organizations to find new approaches to sourcing management talent focused on people and not just hard skills.

The pressure to secure talent is mounting across many industries, so supply chain organizations' ability to compete will depend on the ability to draw fresh talent into the industry with the intention of developing employees at every level to meet evolving needs. Workforce management solutions will be a make or break factor in these efforts.

Topics: Workforce Management