Home' MHD Supply Chain Solutions : MHD May-Jun 2017 Contents Old players have been forced to upgrade their
technology armour or be vanquished.
As a human resources professional in the
logistics industry, I have witnessed a staggering
progression of change, equivalent to a workforce
revolution several times over, in my lifetime.
I've always been amazed and relished the
challenges they bring. What we are witnessing
now, however, is a complete reinvention of the
industry. Change and progress are only going to
accelerate, and the future lies in more robotics;
autonomous vehicles and ‘machine learning’
systems will lead to self-thinking supply chains.
More than ever, leaders need to inspire,
to be the front-runners who set precedents,
control and, at the same time, unleash the
imagination of their workforces. In the words of
the innovative thinker Peter Drucker, employees
need to “eat strategy for breakfast”. To feel
open in sharing ideas and accepting of change
(culture). They also need to have the skills and
support to adapt (infrastructure).
Investing in workforce
infrastructure and culture
While the points above embody the aggressive
ascension of the new order, it would be a mistake
to overlook the fundamental role of people.
The logistics industry of the future will employ
highly skilled professionals in positions that do
not exist today, but who will crucially underpin
all company endeavours. For example, artificial
intelligence is expected to permeate every single
job function in the future, in some way.
Their willingness and ability to acclimatise
and assimilate new technology are critical.
They will be highly mobile and feel repelled by
hierarchical norms that may confine them. In
my own business, I have noticed an increase of
investment in training, leadership coaching and
brand management amongst the services my
company offers. This is no coincidence.
To this end, it's important that the above
staggering figures that denote investment in
technology are equalised with an adequate
investment in workforce attraction, training,
and development. There are all sorts of
statistics I could plug in here that verify the
ROI in training and development. The key is
innovative and flexible thinking by leaders to
trust their staff to lead the way in pinpointing
the training of the future.
At Amazon, Bezos offers his employees
95% prepaid tuition at fulfilment centres for
in-demand fields. This is to encourage them
to "be owners from day one," according to
corporate communications manager Teal
Pennebaker. By determining their own study
choices in this way, Amazon is also allowing
staff to take ownership and ‘pioneer’ their own
careers. This is an astute way of delegating and
sharing the responsibility of determining future
relevance and the enhancement of services they
can offer their customers in the future.
The annual Logistics Executive Employee
Survey consistently highlights the importance
of leadership in inspiring and retaining a
workforce. No doubt, as technology impinges
more and more on day-to-day norms, this will
become even more important.
We are seeing technology also impacting
the role of leadership itself. According to the
new head of Microsoft, Satya Nadella, who has
been praised for turning around his company
in the last three years, this involves “listening”.
As opposed to Bill Gates, he encourages open
collaboration. Similar to Amazon, this promotes a
safe way to share ideas. It offers employees the
confidence to take risks and the expectation that
failure is a part of the norm as experimentation is
a natural part of everyday work life.
Talent acquisition on the rise
Our industry is in desperate need of
appropriately skilled talent to effectively
interface with, and leverage, the advantages
that technology can deliver. The increasing
talent shortage that inspired us to commence
operations in 1999 to become Australia, Asia,
India and the Middle East’s leading specialist
logistics and supply chain talent acquisition and
management organisation, continues unabated
as global value chains continue to become more
networked and sophisticated.
Of note is the fact that following a year (2016)
of moderate turnover and executive jobs growth,
the Australian logistics and supply chain market
is currently experiencing levels of executive
recruitment / placements in the $120-300K salary
range, not seen since pre GFC days.
The bottom line is that we are experiencing
incredible change across the talent landscape,
and it is destined to continue for the foreseeable
future as Australian economic prospects,
underpinned by ongoing residential property
market value growth, continue to improve.
The adage coined by Doug Conant, President,
and CEO of the Campbell Soup Company, still
holds true: “To win in the marketplace you must
first win in the workplace.”
In this age of disruption, this is truer than ever.
Kim Winter is the global CEO of the Logistics
Executive Group. For more information visit
Contact: 1300 555 101
Kardex VCA Pty Ltd, Wodonga VIC 3690
• Small Unit Footprint
• High Speed Operation
• Dedicated Inventory Control
• Minimise Manual Handling with ‘Goods
to User ’
• Storage 500kg per Tray
• Clean Stock, Reduced Shrinkage
• Great ROI, Local Service and Support
• Small Item Distribution
• 3rd Party Logistics and Inhouse Facilities
• Work In Progress and Buffer Storage
• Maintenance Spares
• Tool Storage
MHD SUPPLY CHAIN SOLUTIONS — MAY / JUNE 2017
IT IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN
Links Archive MHD Mar-Apl 2017 MHD July-Aug 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page