Six ‘megatrends’ that are impacting the supply chain

Australian Industry Standards (AIS) has released the 2022 Supply Chain Industry Outlook that identifies six megatrends impacting the supply chain. 

The report focuses on the following industries in the supply chain that AIS supports: transport and logistics, aviation, maritime, and rail. 

The six megatrends are: Double disruptors – digital transformation together with the current pandemic has caused a double disruption to industry, leading business and economic activities to shift rapidly to the online world. 

Supply chain resilience – unprecedented disruptions coupled with consumers’ changing behaviour has highlighted the need for resilient supply chains 

Data analytics and logistics – the implementation of data-capturing technologies has been expedited by the pandemic and organisations are increasingly employing data analytics to inform their decision making and improve processes. The Internet of Things (IoT) connected networks of digital devices, appliances, software and sensors, continue to open up new frontiers. 

Automation – the transport and logistics sector is increasingly using robotics and Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) in warehouses to perform tasks more efficiently and safely 

Labour shortages – an industry-wide labour shortage is adversely affecting Australia’s economic recovery. 

Digital transformation – the acceleration of digitalisation has impacted the skills needs of the workforce, requiring many to upskill or reskill. 

The Industry Outlook is based on extensive research and consultation with Industry Reference Committees (IRC) representing these sectors. 

It provides an overview of each industry and presents a whole-of-industry view about the opportunities and challenges for the workforce and skills development necessary to meet industry needs. 

It also looks at the impact of Covid-19 while addressing the critical role that supply chains play in enabling a strong Australian economy. 

“The recent floods and bushfires in Australia and the current pandemic highlight how the supply chain is involved in so many aspects of our life, from the food we purchase in supermarkets to the supply of materials used in manufacturing and the movement of goods and services across our nation and internationally,” said Paul Walsh, AIS CEO. 

Walsh said there is an even greater need now to have a workforce that is equipped with the right skills at the right time with the Australian economic recovery and our global competitiveness underpinned by a strong and responsive industry-led Vocational Education and Training (VET) system. 

“This Industry Outlook on Supply Chain is a key piece of intelligence about the skills needs of industry. IRCs are well placed to listen to industry stakeholders about their workforce needs,” added Walsh. 

Walsh told Big Rigs that he doesn’t believe the VET system is broken, it’s more a case that it’s not used well enough by the industry at present.

“VET has become a second cousin when it’s anything but,” said Walsh.

“There is plenty of information that will tell you that anyone going through VET qualifications who go on to have a career usually have higher paid careers over the long-term.

“As opposed to university which will lead you to an outcome, but it might take you 15 to 20 years to get you into a well-paid career.

“Coming out of VET you hit the ground harder and faster and actually get into some of those better paying jobs, particularly in the trade-related areas.”

According to the supply chain report, the transport and logistics industry employs 542,721 people and that number is predicted to grow by 8 per cent by 2027.

“We’re going to need more people and we’re going to continue to need more people, and invest in people and find ways to upskill and reskill and retain people in the industry, otherwise this challenge is going to get bigger and bigger,” added Walsh.

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