How to attract and retain millennials for your supply chain workforce

As baby boomers move into semi-retirement, there is a growing emphasis on the millennials in the supply chain workforce.

With the high number of baby boomers transitioning out of the supply chain, career options will rise for supply chain professionals in the years ahead.

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How to solve supply chain’s labour shortage by building inclusive workplaces

Canada’s supply chain sector is one of the pillars of the Canadian economy.

It represents 29 percent of Canada’s total GDP.

In fact, supply chain represents 820,364 workers and labour demand is growing by 2.1 percent annually. (source: Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council).

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Find and retain your future workforce: 6 tips on supply chain recruiting

It's no secret that the supply chain management profession is experiencing rapid change and growth.

Only 15 years ago, the field of supply chain was just emerging.

There was little to no focus on high school, college and university programs for the field.

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Where to get an education for supply chain management jobs in Canada

With the emergence of global markets, the need for supply chain and logistics management has become even more critical.  

Hiring and maintaining skilled employees in the supply chain is one of the most effective ways of lowering total landed cost

According to the Van Horne Institute, there are more than 804,000 Canadians working in supply chain jobs such as

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Reviewing Alberta's labour market and opportunities for supply chains

The province of Alberta is weathering a significant economic downturn.

However, despite the rising unemployment numbers and negative labour market outlook, there are silver linings.

For example, there are significant opportunities in logistics and supply chain management

According to the Supply Chain Sector Council HR Study there will be approximately 360,000 supply chain positions available by 2017. (Download our guide to supply chain labour in Canada for more information.)

Supply chain employers looking for skilled workers have their pick of the crop. They’re recruiting skilled people, improving efficiency and benefiting their bottom line.

In Alberta, the provincial government is also helping companies find these badly needed skilled workers.

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Supply chain management training: Are you overlooking this critical skill?

Have you ever thought about your soft skills? How they impact career success?

Something as simple as active listening greatly affects how people feel and respond to you.

If you feel valued, appreciated, and heard, you’re more likely to be engaged and motivated.  No matter what job you have.


Why are soft skills important?

The right balance of soft skills gives you a sense of internal balance that enables you to:

  • keep your composure
  • communicate effectively
  • make good decisions
  • collaborate with a team
  • maintain effective leadership, even when under stress.

According to Linda Lucas, former leader of Women In Supply Chain:

“When we become aware of our soft skills, we increase our ability to develop collaborative, trusting relationships. Because the supply chain is built on team work and effective communication, soft skills are an important ingredient for success.”

Acquiring or improving on these skills is essential for any supply chain management training program. 

So what are the soft skills that employers should look for or that employees must have? 

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Labour shortage in supply chain and logistics: What you need to know

Throughout Canada, the supply chain and logistics industry is scrambling to find the right people due to a lack skilled labour for all kinds of jobs at all levels, including senior executives, middle management and entry level positions.

So is there any GOOD NEWS?

Yes, immediate measures are being taken across the industry. Read on to learn what those are and how they can help your company.

New solutions for severe labour shortage

In fact, there are numerous initiatives from the Canadian government, educational institutions and private/public sectors partners to address the looming labour shortage in the supply chain.

“These initiatives include ideas about how to secure and retain the right people to keep your total landed costs down in the long-term, said Reg Johnston from RJT&L Consulting Ltd.

Here are three ideas in implementation:

Download our guide to supply chain labour for more solutions on finding and retaining your workforce. 

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Supply chain training program: How to use the Canada Job Grant for employee success

With many Canadian employment sectors experiencing significant cutbacks, more people are considering a new career path.

If you're in supply chain, then you know about of the shortage of skilled workers at all levels.

Did you know there is a federal government program that can help solve this shortage?

The Canada Job Grant (CJG) offers the promise of hiring employee and having their training paid for.


Canada's jobs paradox

Canada has a jobs paradox best described by Dr. Rick Miner in his reports: “ People without Jobs – Jobs without People ” and the “Great Canadian Skills Mismatch.”

In Canada, we have many skilled people out of work.

However, the supply chain sector has many opportunities from truck drivers to CEOs and everything in between.

There's a severe shortage of people to fill these jobs and it's only getting worse.

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Are women the solution to the supply chain labour shortage in Canada?

In Canada, we are moving into a huge supply chain labour shortage.

According to the Canadian Supply Sector Council, by 2017, there will be more than 356,747 supply chain job vacancies nationally.

The reason for the shortage are:

  • low awareness and understanding of the supply chain sector
  • large baby boomer workforce retiring

Is attracting and retaining more women to a career in supply chain a solution to this labour shortage? Definitely.


What is the challenge and why the urgency?

Supply chain functions and occupations cross all sectors and industries, and according to Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.

Not having a skilled workforce is a critical issue for the Canadian economy. “We have to have a real sense of urgency. We are trying to sound an alarm,” said Beatty.

Attracting women to the supply chain sector is not a women’s issue it's a talent issue. It's about responding to a Canadian workforce experiencing shortages in skilled supply chain workers now and into the future.

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What everybody ought to know about the new supply chain occupational standards

If you’ve been involved in the supply chain sector, you've experienced frustration with the lack of job standards.

Or, you've struggled matching potential employees with jobs based on their skills.

This is all about to change.

The Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council is close to finishing a highly anticipated two-part, two-year project.

The results of the program will include:

  • 15 new occupational standards for supply chain roles
  • An online skills assessment tool specific to work in the supply chain


Occupational Standards Project

Expected to be completed in December 2015, the project provides 15 new occupational standards for these related industries:

  • Transportation
  • Work related to Canada's gateways and trade corridors


Easy-to-use online assessment tool

This project includes an online assessment tool identifying an individual's strengths and deficiencies relative to any of the occupational standards for a supply chain job.

33 existing supply chain occupational standards were developed through earlier projects. Now, with the new 15 profiles, there will be 48 occupational standards.

These standards are a first for the Canadian supply chain sector and much needed.


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