Current trends affecting supply chain in South Africa

​​​​​People play a pertinent role in supply chain management. ​Seven out of top ten supply chain challenges faced by South African companies relate to people, emphasising the central role that people play in determining and executing business strategy (supplychainforesight 2015 report).​

It is worth noti​ng that t​​alent scarity and big data some of the major trends that dominated 2014.​ Here are other trends that are currently affecting supply chain ​​in South Africa.​


1. Change management: The contemporary business environment is dominated by change and most organisations are having to prioritise change management in pursuit of sustainability. The ability to identify, manage and lead change is a new ‘basic’ requirement for employing executive supply chain talent. In a​ddition, supply chain leaders are required to be proactive, visionary and multi-skilled. 

2. Skills shortage: The shortage of pertinent skills​ and talent in supply chain remains a primary limitation for most South African organisations. Moreover, there is a growing need for softer skills in supply chain and an emphasis on effective communication, teamwork and employee retention. Proactive employee retention is pertinent because of the skills shortage and the fact that only 39% of the South Africa’s work force are active jobseekers (LinkedIn Talent Report 2015). Moreover, employee turnover is too costly and can cause severe supply chain disruptions hence the growing emphasis on employee wellness. 

3. Supply chain is taking centre stage: More and more business leaders are recognising the central role supply chains play in business strategies and the need to employ the right people the first time around. 

4. Big data is creating smarter supply chains: The wide availability of data and business intelligence is helping supply chain professionals to innovate and use supply chain as a competitive advantage.

5. Customer-centricity: With more and more customers shopping online, supply chains are moving towards improving service levels. The customer is king and organisations are aligning their supply chains to support changing customer needs. 

Overall, supply chains are undergoing major changes from in and outside the organisation. The growing importance of supply chain is making organisations realise the need for employing the right people the first time around.​​​

Supply chain professionals who actively align their skills set with current trends will have the pick of challenging and rewarding career opportunities over the next decade. Are you a supply chain professional who has a track record for helping companies create a sustainable competitive advantage? We have various opportunities available in ​Supply Chain, Planning​, Consulting, Procurement, and Logistics​​. Check ​out our jobs page to apply.​​

Photo credit: ​photoraidz via Freedigitalphotos.net​