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Supply Chain Management: Top Ten Trends For 2024

Supply Chain Management: Top Ten Trends for 2024

Supply Chain Management: Top Ten Trends for 2024

Complexity is increasing as resilience and sustainability strategies are being developed despite a shortage of skilled workers and cost pressure. SCM experts from Setlog publish key theses following discussions and analyses. Things are changing in supply chain management: while cost-cutting has been at the top of the agenda for many executives for years, in future they will be increasingly concerned with the shortage of skilled workers, sustainability, and resilience. Ralf Duester, board member of the Bochum-based SCM software specialist Setlog, shows which trends will be important in 2024. His statements are based not only on discussions with experts from the industry and research but also on data from Setlog customers who use the SCM tool OSCA. In the fashion and fast-moving consumer goods sectors alone, this includes around 100 brands, such as Tom Tailor, KiK, Karl Lagerfeld, Jack Wolfskin and Wenko. At a glance: The top ten SCM trends in 2024 1. Skilled labor shortage forces action 2. Sustainability laws and the circular economy force better processes 3. Building resilience with concurrent cost pressure 4. Transparency is becoming increasingly important 5. Supply Chain as a Service becomes crucial to competition 6. ERP silos are being dismantled 7. Global and regional supply chains are mixed 8. Cyber security becomes a top priority 9. Automation projects are progressing 10. Open-source software is increasingly convincing The best of the best also use open-source software and artificial intelligence in supply chain management. Ralf Duester, board member of Setlog, emphasizes: “If you want to enable collaboration, you need a new mindset within the company.” Photo: Timothy Muza / unsplash; Setlog In detail: The ten most important SCM trends in 2024 1. Skilled labor shortage forces action The shortage of skilled labor is putting companies in industrialized nations in increasingly difficult situations. And it’s not getting any better: demographic change in countries such as Germany is putting even more pressure on management. Studies show that in some areas, around a third of companies that were unable to fill all vacancies did not receive a single application. If you want to stand out from the crowd, you need to offer attractive conditions to existing and future employees. Leading companies are also stepping up their commitment to career guidance and catering to the needs of Generation Z. As studies show, young people place a high value on flat hierarchies and want modern IT systems in their day-to-day work. Many companies can and must become even more efficient or make workplaces more attractive. To ensure that more truck drivers are back home in the evening, for example, the forwarding association Elvis wants to set up a meeting network for full truck loads. The best of the best also differentiate their recruitment strategy – for example, according to generations or potential groups such as newcomers or foreign workers. They also offer different retention programs and show perspectives through flexible working hours, parental leave and training and further education campaigns. 2. Sustainability laws and the circular economy force better processes Sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) are not only top issues for large corporations, but also SMEs. Business partners, consumers and politicians are calling on companies to act quickly. The EU is pushing for a comprehensive supply chain law. In the United States, for example, the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) is in effect, and individual states are also pushing ahead with new laws. In Germany, more and more companies have put the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions and compliance with the Supply Chain Act at the top of their agenda. However, effective climate protection measures require a rethink in the minds of employees and a modification of current work processes. Executives are also increasingly investigating how they can implement strategies from the circular economy so that fewer goods are destroyed. Companies that cannot trace the path of their products from development through procurement and production to shipping will find it difficult to meet the new requirements of governments, consumer associations and customers. Small companies are still excluded from supply chain laws in many countries. However, they will still need to deal with them on a day-to-day basis, at the latest when the new Europe-wide “Supply Chain Directive” comes into effect (Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive, CSDDD for short). It is based on the French “loi de vigilance” and the German Supply Chain Law and contains due diligence obligations that primarily address the issues of environmental protection and compliance with human rights. The following applies to SMEs: they can […]

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Daisie Hobson

Daisie Hobson is a Director at the Reshoring Institute and an engineer with many years of experience in manufacturing and project management.

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