Supply chain talent of the future

Results of Deloitte's 3rd annual Supply Chain Survey

Each year, Deloitte surveys supply chain executives to understand their top-of-mind issues and the actions they are taking to address them. As accelerating technology development and widespread experimentation with new operating models lead to dramatic supply chain transformation, companies are suggesting that issues of talent is an area of growing concern. Our survey bore out that sense as only few executives expressed high levels of confidence in the talent in their field—and in their organizations.

Only 38 percent of executives say they are extremely or very confident that their supply chain organization has the competencies it needs today. Other findings from our survey of 400 executives includes:

  • 24 percent of respondents from manufacturing firms report they are currently using 3D printing in some form; another 21 percent expect they will do so within the next three years
  • More than 70 percent of executives said either that their companies currently use or expect to use 12 of 13 fast-evolving technical capabilities asked about in our survey; but, out of eight technical competencies asked about, only two were considered strengths by a majority of respondents
  • Only 38 percent of all executives surveyed say they are extremely or very confident that their supply chain organization has the competencies it needs today
  • Only 43 percent of respondents considered their supply chain organization to be excellent or very good when it comes to “strategic thinking and problem solving”

And yet, looking to the future, we find these executives somewhat more hopeful, with 44 percent believing their organizations will be able to put the required knowledge, skills, and abilities in place. Is that wishful thinking? Perhaps not.

While the demands on talent will only grow, as we explore in this report, there are also effective models from which supply chain organizations can learn. The leaders among them are already excelling in many areas, showing the way to success. Their abilities and willingness to embrace key talent practices are producing organizations capable of great things—and enabling them to post performance numbers that, to their organizations’ top management, make for thrilling reading.

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