In my last article, I introduced Deloitte’s supply chain survey report and shared Deloitte’s concept of what it takes to be a supply chain Leader. It’s clear to me from the survey results that Leaders become Leaders because they have superior talent.
So, how do they develop that talent?
This question has never been more relevant. After all, the supply chain function isn’t exactly going to become less important over the next few years. When Deloitte asked executives whether they anticipated expanding or decreasing their supply chain organizations’ span of control over the next five years, about one-third responded that they expect to expand it.
The supply chain organizations that are excelling at finding and developing the talent they’ll need to keep growing are using a variety of means to achieve their goals. Some 60% of Leaders use informal development programs extensively in talent management, and 47% use formal development programs.
As you can see, developing talent remains just as important as finding it in the first place—and probably more so. Only 15% of Followers make extensive use of informal development, and only 16% make extensive use of formal development. Could there be a connection between talent development and business results?
We think so.
The encouraging fact here is that 48% of Followers expect to use informal development more over the next five years, while 45% expect to make greater use of formal development. Fewer and fewer companies are disputing the fact that it’s absolutely critical to develop a staff that’s well equipped to deal with evolving supply chain challenges.
How Technology Can Support Employee Development
For most supply chain organizations, the question remains: what can we do to accelerate the development of our staff?
Look, I’m no expert in human capital management. But I do know this: a huge percentage of the typical employee training process is wasted on teaching new hires how to log on to antiquated systems, how to navigate complex user interfaces, where to find files, and how to update spreadsheets without breaking their links to other spreadsheets.
Activities like these do teach employees how to function in their new environment. But they add absolutely no value to the business.
Ask yourself: how many hours—or days—could we shave off the employee training process if we simply presented each new hire with logon credentials to an integrated supply chain planning system that puts all their most important information and transactions at their fingertips?
What if the interface for that system was familiar and had a similar look and feel to Microsoft Word or Excel? And what if it included social tools for collaborating with peers and partners in real time?
You’re looking at the difference between instant productivity and ongoing frustration in the employee onboarding experience. You’re looking at a way to trim training costs, improve your company’s image, and maybe even decrease employee turnover.
Let’s Keep Talking about Supply Chain Talent Management
We at Demand Solutions have worked hard to deliver integrated and intuitive supply chain planning solutions that not only enhance overall employee productivity, but can also make the employee development process as painless as possible. We’re grateful that Deloitte is focusing on the importance of talent management in the supply chain organization, and we’d love to discuss with you the part that technology can play in this process. Drop us a line!