Supply Chain Labor Shortages Remain

by Carolyn Mathas

According to a recent report from Descartes Systems Group, 54% of supply chain and logistics operations are prioritizing automation to mitigate workforce shortages.

Descartes surveyed more than 1,000 business leaders from manufacturing, distribution, and retail companies, carriers, and logistics services providers. Highlights of the study include:

  • For laborers, top technology choices identified in the survey were delivery route optimization (54%) and driver mobile productivity (45%)
  • For knowledge workers, the top technology choice was real-time shipment tracking (53%)
  • Most companies surveyed (54%) said they have altered their strategies for hiring all types of workers, including warehouse employees, drivers, planners, managers, and analysts
  • Flexibility (35%) and technology adoption (34%) were cited as top strategies to attract workers
  • Compensation for on-the-job training and education (35%) and higher pay (34%) were the top strategies for retaining workers

“The workforce problem is pervasive, and the study confirms that most supply chain and logistics organizations have made changes to their operational, technology, recruitment and retention strategies to help combat the issue,” Chris Jones, executive vice president, industry at Descartes, said in a statement announcing the findings. “Based on the results of the study, we believe that employers should continue to invest and evolve to get the most they can from their existing resources and focus on more than money to hire and retain a capable workforce.”

The report, What Are Companies Doing to Survive the Supply Chain and Logistics Workforce Challenge? was published April 15.

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