Bottlenecks and leaks in the talent pipeline

supply chain talent

The shortage of supply chain talent continues to hamper business. Therefore, much attention is focused on increasing the inflow. However, it is equally important to consider the entire talent pipeline. If companies want to ensure sufficient talent in the future, they will also have to do something about the outflow.

Good news from the labour market: more and more talents are consciously choosing a career in supply chain. They do so based on recommendations by their career advisor (23%) or their personal network (23%), but also because they have heard or read a lot about the field in the media in recent years (12%). They have seen the news reports about disrupted supply chains, e-commerce peaks and shortages of raw materials, and want to make a sustainable contribution to solving these issues.

The figures come from Boom!, the global community for women in supply chain that conducts annual research on supply chain talent. They mark a break from the trend in the period before the pandemic, when the discipline was little known to the general public and rarely made headlines. As many as 80% of experienced professionals who have worked in supply chain for more than five years say they entered the field by chance during that time. Now, only 40% do so.

“It is good news that the new generation of talent is not only consciously choosing a career in supply chain, but is also happy with their choice. As many as 90% would recommend a career in supply chain to others. This is a great show of support for our field,” says Melanie Salter, Director of Supply Chain Research at Boom!

That more and more talents are consciously choosing careers in supply chain is substantiated by the growth in the number of supply chain degrees. In the US alone, between 2012 and 2020, the number of master’s programmes grew from 24 to 63 and the number of bachelor’s programmes from 12 to 46. “Nevertheless, the demand for supply chain talent continues to exceed supply,” Salter claims. … … …

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