Key Supply Chain Leaders' Skills and Why You Need Them

Learn key strategies for identifying top supply chain skills to design a talent strategy with sustained effectiveness and relevance.

Retaining Talent With Key Supply Chain Skills

Gartner supply chain management research reveals the top 10 tactics for retaining next-generation supply chain talent, including increasing work flexibility and innovating learning and development programs.

Download our supply chain talent report to read about all 10 supply chain management tactics for retaining Gen Z and millennial talent:

  • Key drivers of high performance
  • Priorities of Gen Z and millennial supply chain talent
  • Featured case study from Unilever

Download Supply Chain Talent Report

Discover the top 10 tactics for retaining next-generation supply chain talent.

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    Combat the Supply Chain Management Skills Shortage

    The talent shortage is an ongoing struggle in supply chain organizations, especially as non-traditional work models develop, and younger generations demand more flexibility in all aspects of work. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated those shifts, so to attract and retain talent today, supply chain leaders must reinvent work.

    But how can leaders redesign the frontline roles that appear to be less flexible by nature, like those based in warehouses and factories?

    Graphic displaying the top external forces having the greatest impact on your supply chain's resources.

    Improve the Employment Value Proposition to Retain Key Supply Chain Skills

    There are many ways to improve the frontline worker experience when you focus on activities instead of treating an entire role as “onsite only.”

    For example, many machines can now be operated and monitored remotely. Using technology, shift schedule design can be delegated to the workforce to a certain degree, so workers are in a better position to align their work and personal schedules. There are many more frontline workers in the supply chain workforce than desk workers, so their well-being should not take a back seat. Providing autonomy will lead to happier workers and better business outcomes.

    Bar graph displaying the top organizational constraints which present the most significant challenges to supply chain performance.

    Gartner insights you can use to develop key supply chain skills

    Gartner's supply chain skills insights, advice, data and tools help supply chain organizations move beyond the hype of predictions to prepare them to leverage the opportunities ahead of them and gain a competitive advantage in the industry.

    Women in Supply Chain: 2022 Trends in Representation

    Women in Supply Chain 2022 Survey Data from Gartner and AWESOME shows a record number of women at the first-line manager, senior manager and director levels, despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on working women. Download the survey data to benchmark your efforts and learn best practices to recruit, develop and engage women in supply chain.

    Gain Access to Future Supply Chain Talent

    Gartner conducted focus groups with North American supply chain university students to learn how students view the roles that they want to play to enable enterprise purpose through supply chain.

    Supply Chain University Top 25 for 2022

    The Gartner Supply Chain University Top 25 for 2022 highlights the North American universities with the best curricula, real-world experience and industry reputations. See who ranked highest in the Gartner Supply Chain University Top 25 for 2022.

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    Gartner Supply Chain Skills Case Studies

    Gartner gave us a framework to empower people even more. It was streamlining processes, eliminating some of these over-architected processes that we had, and moving to decision-making empowerment – the right people making the right decisions.

    Leslie Nicholson

    SVP of Supply Chain Operations & Digital Business Transformation Lead, Nestlé Canada
    Case Study

    Empowering the Quality Team to Drive Quality Culture

    Despite having employed consultants for a year, the head of quality at a heavy equipment manufacturer didn’t feel their team was anymore empowered to make or validate their own decisions than before the consultants came on-site. Leveraging Gartner support for driving forward the quality culture – like quality management content and learning & development opportunities for the quality team – the client drove key talent related outcomes like retention and new hire quality.

    Experience Supply Chain conferences

    Join your peers for the unveiling of the latest insights at Gartner conferences.

    The Gartner Supply Chain Podcast

    The Gartner Supply Chain Podcast explores the latest ideas and innovations for driving sustainable supply chain success. Join your hosts Thomas O’Connor and Caroline Chumakov as they uncover strategic insights and tactical tips in conversation with global supply chain experts.

    Listen Now

    Gartner Supply Chain Top 25 for 2022

    See the 18th annual ranking to learn the standard for supply chain excellence.

    See the Top 25 List

    Supply Chain Skills FAQs

    The top skills which supply chain professionals need are:

    • Project Management
    • People Skills
    • Analytical Skills
    • Technology Skills
    Some of the technical skills needed for effective supply chain management include:
    • Capacity Planning
    • Demand Management
    • Order Processing
    • Inventory Management and Optimization
    • Logistics, Warehouse and Storage Management

    The top supply chain skills required for the future include:

    • Business Skills
      • Cross-Functional Collaboration
      • Data-Driven Decision Making
      • Process Improvement and Project Management
      • Customer and Commercial Understanding
    • Behaviors/Traits
      • Inclusive Leadership
      • Adaptability and Risk Taking
      • Innovation and Creativity
    • Technical Skills
      • Technology, Tools and Apps
      • Advanced Analytics

    A supply chain skills assessment is a comprehensive test that assesses the skills at all levels of a supply chain and evaluates a person on a range of supply chain capabilities.

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