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6 Ways to Find and Keep Supply Chain Professionals
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Broad supply chain skills are in demand, but narrow skill sets seem to be the rule. These tips can help you hire employees that meet your company's needs.

Increasing globalization and market uncertainty are making strategic thinking and effective communication more important than ever for supply chain professionals. Yet many of those in the field have spent more time gaining narrow cost-cutting and technical knowledge than they have learning the broader skills currently in demand.

That's why Nick Little, assistant director of Executive Development Programs at Michigan State University, suggests using these six "R's" to find and keep people with the right skill sets for the job:

  1.  Recruit. Little explains that it's important to raise the profile of supply chain management as a career that can lead to the corner office, among high school counselors, college faculty, new graduates and experienced managers alike.
  2.  Retain. Offer good people reasons to stay with you rather than jump to competitors, such as additional training through mentored programs that allow promising employees to rotate through various positions to gain knowledge. Many employees remain loyal to companies that help them develop their minds and skills through education and communication.
  3.  Reward. Salaries and incentives should recognize and reward success in basic job expectations as well as the ability to deal with managers' questions and to maintain relationships with suppliers and internal customers.
  4.  Redefine. In today's supply chain, managers need to invest time and attention to help everyone - laborers, specialists and executives - become learners, problem solvers, leaders and team members.
  5.  Realign. Think of human resources leaders as strategic suppliers. Hiring, celebrating success, managing idea programs and training are all ways to cultivate human resources.
  6.  Redeploy. Managers should find opportunities to move people to other parts of the organization to avoid losing their knowledge. So, when a position opens up, consider whether it's an opportunity for someone to develop beyond his or her current capabilities before looking outside.

 


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