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Top 2018 trends in logistics and supply chain operations
We can all see that the logistics industry is evolving, bringing both exciting risks and great opportunities. Going forward, the following five trends below will likely impact your current company’s logistics and supply chain operations. Let’s take a look at what to expect in the Hong Kong market for the rest of 2018!
1. Logistics companies will focus on perfect order deliveries.
Other than larger companies such as DHL, K+N, Toll and Schenker, the number of local and small-sized logistics companies are significantly increasing. Therefore, added pressure will be put on employees so as to maintain outstanding service standards.
Because of this, every order will have to be perfect. Emphasis will be placed on the percentage of orders delivered to the right place, at the right time, in the proper condition and in the right package. Additionally, they will expect the right documentation, to the right customer, with the correct invoice and in the correct quantity. Therefore, professionals with good planning and KPI monitoring experience are required.
2. Digital transformation will change systems.
Companies in Hong Kong continue to look to digital to transform systems and processes, and to improve efficiencies on every level. We are seeing new headcounts approved for 2018 to ensure companies have the digital talent they need to take on challenges, from ramping up cyber security to creating more effective enterprise-wide systems and even better websites and apps.
Cyber security roles will remain a very hot area of hiring activity over the year ahead. Machine learning professionals, web developers and full stack Java script developers with a good sense of the market will also be in very high demand. Retail banks and investment banks in particular are offering attractive salaries to entice skilled candidates to make the jump.
3. Growing importance of customer and user experience.
Companies are aggressively expanding their customer experience (CX) functions, creating rising demand for professionals with a solid background in Voice of Customer (VOC), consumer insight and customer analytics. In light of the growing importance of online marketing, employers are looking for passionate and determined candidates able to drive change and shape the customer experience roadmap.
There will be a strong and growing demand for seasoned social media talent and those experienced in formulating content strategies to attract, engage and retain customers.
4. Big developments in warehouse robotics and automation.
Warehouse robotics developments turned out to be quite prolific in 2018. Logistics giant DHL launched a challenge program to encourage development of piece-picking warehouse robots.
Alibaba, the world’s largest retailer, ramped up robotic labour in one of its warehouses this year, reducing the human workforce in the facility by 70%. We can foresee that more and more warehouses will go “robotic” so as to save on labour costs and resources in the long run.
5. High demand for Mandarin-speaking professionals.
With more companies looking to expand their presence in Mainland China and North Asia, we are seeing a marked increase in demand for senior executives able to conduct business in fluent Mandarin.
Demand is particularly high for Mandarin-speaking supply chain and planning specialists, and this is expected to remain the case throughout 2018.
Other logistics trends for 2018 and 2019
These are the five biggest tends I am watching for in 2018, but I am sure you’ve got other ideas.
What will you be keeping an eye on over the next year? Please feel free to leave your own trends analysis in the comments below, and let everyone know how you will be making the logistics industry better in the rest of 2018!
And get in touch if you're looking for logistics and supply chain roles in Hong Kong!