Closing The Supply Chain Talent Gap: It’s time to Rethink Your Hiring Strategies


The supply chain industry is in the midst of massive transition. The baby boomer generation are retiring and a growing talent gap has begun forming.

Part of the problem comes down to a lack of hiring initiatives. However, the real solutions go far deeper than that. It’s time to address these issues head on and explore solutions that will empower the next generation of supply chain professionals.

Measuring The Supply Chain Talent Gap

The gap between retirees and the lack of new talent reveals a lack of recruitment efforts. Young minds are not introduced to the concept of the supply chain or even exposed to it as a potential career.

As a result, it is not an industry that appears at the top of aspiring professional’s lists. To address the problem at the source, we need to make a greater effort towards educating young students about the industry and career paths before they reach the college level.

Looking beyond education, the talent gap is also the result of poor talent acquisition strategies that treat the effort as a low-priority HR initiative. Instead, we should be thinking of recruiting as a value-added element of the business.

To counter the gap now, your organization must rethink and restructure your hiring strategies to match the shift in demographics and talent.

3 Steps to Rethink Your Hiring Strategies from Top to Bottom

Current hiring strategies in both small and larger organizations are lacking in several factors that affect how prospects perceive the brand inside and out. To close this talent gap, organizations need to change how they hire and retain talent in the supply chain sector. Here’s how you can get started today:

Step One: Start With Your Internal Strategies

Change comes from within, as the old adage goes.  A shift in your hiring process should begin with a look at your internal methods for cultivating talent. More importantly, how do you retain your top performers? A study done by DHL found that only 1-in-4 supply chain professionals feel that their organization places as much importance on their department as other aspects of the business.

The bottom line? They don’t take pride in their roles. They fear budget cuts and the lack of digital adoption. This is not the culture that attracts talent. Take a step back and look at how the supply chain is treated at the executive level.

Better compensation, higher flexibility, and more robust benefits will all add value to the people in your supply chain. Once you’ve done this, consider implementing an employee referral program. This is a powerful source for talent already attuned to the industry.

Finally, consider an internal leadership development program for both new hires and existing employees. The opportunity for growth will be a powerful motivator across the entire department.

Step Two: Develop External Branding and Initiatives

As your turn your focus to places outside of your organization, start by working with universities and schools. Partnering with these places will offer opportunities to educate young people about a career in the supply chain, something that rarely comes up in your typical education.

As you do this, focus on creating more external career information that incorporates your branding. A separate page or website with information on your company, its culture, and potential career paths. Consider paid recruiting tools, like the ones found on LinkedIn to created targeted job postings as well.

Step Three: Widen Your Scope

In some cases, organizations create hyper-detailed job postings that illustrate almost impossible prerequisites. As a result, potential candidates move on without any hope of qualifying. In reality, many skills are transferable to the supply chain, so encourage applicants by only focusing on the core skills you’re looking for.

Programs for veterans, applicants with disabilities, or those who have been unemployed for a long period of time can also bring talent to the table across the supply chain.

The Millennial Factor

The primary careers attracting millennials fall into categories outside of logistics or supply chain management, but there’s still time to turn this around. By 2025, millennials will make up 75% of the workforce, so this will act as the deadline.

The shift towards this demographic is already underway. The question now is how your organization can appeal to this new generation of professionals? Consider these strategies:

  • Growth and Perspective – Millennial workers are not content to simply exist as a cog in the machine, nor are they satisfied with the same tasks as time goes on. Start by focusing on how their unique role plays into the larger success of the company, and consistently introduce new challenges to keep them on their toes.
  • Showcase Sustainability – With a renewed focus on the environment and green initiatives, promoting your brand’s sustainability is a great way to instill pride from both current and future talent.
  • Offer Flexibility – Along with a focus on the environment, millennials also pay close attention to a healthy work/life balance. The rigid structure of a 9-to-5 is fading in favor of more dynamic work schedules and opportunities to work from home. You can expect your top talent to be more productive, but only if you’re also willing to be flexible in how they complete their work.
  • Tap into Technology – In the age of smartphones and wearable tech, millennials expect only the best from their career tools. If you’re still on the wrong side of a digital transformation, now is the time to embrace the latest tools and technology. Without access to these, many millennials will look elsewhere.

Embracing Technology

If there’s one common thread throughout this story, it’s the need to embrace technology. Companies that sit on the cutting-edge will attract far more talent than those who cling to outdated methods or tools. In the spirit of this, Findchips Pro offers a robust and evolutionary way to empower your sourcing and procurement.

With access to powerful data, proprietary algorithms, and collaborative tools, this type of technology will most certainly put your organization on the map. As you seek out the next generation of talent, schedule a demo to find out how Findchips Pro could become a integral part of your hiring strategy.

Alex Peron
Alex Peron
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