Supply Chain Matters provides a follow-up to our prior blog commentary on salary trending in existing job roles in supply chain management, essentially recognizing and retaining the skills of the current workforce.  Another previously published report points to current trending in recruiting of entry-level roles, affording potential candidates their best odds of success in selling their potential skills.Integrated Business Planning
In our previous Supply Chain Matters blog, we highlighted and provided insights on a recent report highlighting the ten jobs most likely to have provided a hefty pay raise in 2017, which included the role of Logistician. We then broadened the implications for existing job roles and those seeking salary advancement.
What about current trending in recruiting for typically entry-level supply chain management jobs?
A published report from the Wall Street Journal published in late July (Paid subscription required) should be on interest to multi-industry supply chain teams and recruiters. The report indicates that employers are beginning to abandon classic preferences for college degrees or specific stated experience in order to expand the available pool of candidates and speed-up the recruiting and hiring process. The report indicates a new awareness that in times where pools of employee candidates were plentiful, such as directly after the prior global-wide recession, employers may have been well-served by incorporating specific education and skill requirements to help hiring managers to pre-screen candidates. In today’s near full-employment economy, employers are beginning to realize that what they really need is hire candidates with upside potential to learn quickly, and to be able to assume needed hard and soft skills with formal mentoring and on-the-job training.
The report observes:
Now, recruiters say, the tightest job market in decades has left employers looking to tamp down hiring costs with three options: Offer more money upfront, lower their standards or retrain current staff in coding, procurement or other necessary skills.
In developing her report, Wall Street Journal reporter Kelsey Gee spoke with Rodney Apple, President of SCM Talent Group, a supply chain management specialist recruiting firm.  Mr. Apple noted that today’s talent shortages are the most extreme that he has observed in nearly 20 years of recruiting. He indicated that his firm will likely walk away from a client that is not willing to be flexible on either compensation, experience of education requirements in today’s unprecedented market.
Canadian based Argentus Supply Chain Recruiting published a recent blog echoing the WSJ report. Noted was the following:
At Argentus, we’re working in the same vertical in Canada. Candidates in our market are in such high demand that we’ve been doing the same…. Anecdotally, we’ve seen a small uptick in roles for high-potential entry level grads in Supply Chain Management – (though still not as many as we’d like to see, with the high number of new grads that come to us!) Companies are becoming slightly more willing to relax requirements on the junior end to hire quickly; in a hiring market as strong as this one, “entry level” can actually mean entry level instead of, paradoxically, requiring at least 3 years of experience. But companies should be more flexible, at least if they want to actually hire instead of kicking tires.
Noted in our prior Supply Chain Matters commentary was our re-stating of 2018 Predictions for Industry and Global Supply Chains, specifically what we termed the Supply Chain Perfect Storm, that the reality of needed skills and talent will remain an ongoing challenge requiring more collaboration and added emphasis for employers.
To research our prediction, we consulted directly with our supply chain recruiting advisory panel that included Rodney Apple, President of SCM Talent Group, Bronwen Hann, President and Senior Partner at Argentus Supply Chain Recruiting, Jason Breault, Managing Director, LifeWork Search, among others. We all began to collectively advocate for recruiting entry-level and some other supply chain management roles based on a candidate’s skill-level potential. Thus, the news that employers are now willing to change their hiring practices should be viewed as positive, especially for those readers wishing to pursue a rewarding career in any of the functions that makeup today’s umbrella of supply chain management.
As was echoed in the Argentus blog commentary: If more companies are waking up to this new line of thinking, than indeed- Bring it on. Our community benefits with recruiting people who have the desire and potential to make a difference and mature to future supply chain leaders.
Bob Ferrari
© Copyright 2018. The Ferrari Consulting and Research Group and the Supply Chain Matters® blog. All rights reserved.