Supply Chain Strategies

Supply Chain Graphic of the Week: Supply Chain Strategies to Prepare for the Next 10 Years

Partnering with Vendors Tops the List, but Fastest Growing Strategy is Recruiting New Skill Sets

April 7, 2017
SCDigest Editorial Staff
In conjunction with the ProMat 2017 event, the MHI organization also released its annual report for 2017, an effort that has few changed dramatically in the past few years. Not long ago, the report was mostly a summary of how things stood in terms of the market for materials handling systems, while now it is a major trends piece produced in conjunction with Deloitte.

This year’s report focuses very much on the “digital supply chain.” We’ll see if the report has any better insight on that interesting but to our mind still very vague concept when we read it in more detail, but we did find interesting the graphic below from the document on what companies are doing to prepared their supply chains for the next 10 years, based on survey data from supply chain professionals.

 

 

Source: MHI Annual Report 2017

As can be seen, the number 1 action taken in 2017 is “partnering with vendors,” at 54%, up 9 percentage points and 19% from 2015 to 2017.

The biggest single jump was for “recruiting new skill sets,” up 26% to 48% in 2017, as SCDigest notes supply chains are now hiring for positions like data scientists and internet of things experts that weren’t on the radar screen just a few years ago. Some are also trying to recruit managers with better collaboration and influencing skills.

A solid 46% say they are piloting new technologies, but that leaves 54% of companies that are not doing such testing. In today’s dynamic world, that seems very short sighted and risky to SCDigest.

We’ll also quickly note that whether you are the CEO or the VP of supply chain, 10 years can look a long ways out, and perhaps beyond your likely tenure at the company, so focusing on this year’s or this quarter’s result can be a lot more pressing.

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