There’s certainly no shortage of stressors facing supply chain professionals today. From continuing “demand vs. supply” imbalances to tariffs and the threat of port strikes and war, we are facing the most challenging business climate that we’ve seen in decades. But there’s little doubt in my mind that the challenge that currently sits at the top of most (if not all) supply chain managers’ list of concerns is the shortage of labor.
This problem is much wider and deeper than not having enough drivers to operate trucks. It is a holistic one that cuts across the entire supply chain from the warehouse floor to the C-suite.
Certainly, positions in the transportation and warehousing sectors have long been challenging to fill. But companies are also struggling to fill what I would call more corporate types of roles. As a result, we currently are all competing for the same limited supply of talent, trying to lure away the best and the brightest from our competitors.
This approach is not sustainable. We need a new pipeline of talent, and we need to build it together.
Here at CSCMP, we believe we need to join as one across the entire supply chain profession to develop more core talent at all levels of the supply chain. We need great talent that is competent and capable to produce results, and we are going to have to work together across government and private industry to find and nurture it.
As a starting point, CSCMP has created a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization called the Talent Center. The Talent Center will create training-to-jobs programs that will reach people and places that have been overlooked or underrepresented in terms of supply chain jobs. We will also be developing programs at the high school level to introduce students to the field of supply chain management. Part of that curriculum will be focused on preparing some students for a two-year or four-year college. But another equally important part will provide more technical training that will help other students directly enter the workforce with a greater skill set than they have ever had before.
But we cannot do this alone. We need partners. Our hope is that companies and individuals will join us by making tax-deductible donations to the Center to fund these programs. Our goal is to raise $5 million by 2025. With your help, we can get there. If you would like to make a donation to help change the future of the supply chain profession, please reach out via email to Cynthia Mebruer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By taking this first step, we believe that we can begin to be more intentional about developing the workforce of the future and making the profession sustainable for years to come. We hope you join us.