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Meet the Not-So-Average Supply Chain Millennials

Forget the stereotypes you've heard about Millennials in the workplace. New research from SCMR, APICS and APQC finds that the next generation is engaged and enthused about careers in supply chain management.

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This is an excerpt of the original article. It was written for the September-October 2017 edition of Supply Chain Management Review. The full article is available to current subscribers.

September-October 2017

When it comes to the next generation of supply chain management, the future just may be now. That’s one of the conclusions reached by Greg Gorbach, an analyst at the research firm ARC Advisory Group, after surveying supply chain executives, including subscribers to Supply Chain Management Review, on the digitization of their supply chains. In “The Great Digitization of Industry,” Gorbach notes that while it may take years for the widespread adoption of new technologies such as machine learning, additive manufacturing, smart factories and advanced analytics to become commonplace, digitization across verticals is happening faster than many of us…
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Entitled, impatient, impetuous, narcissistic, self-absorbed, unwilling to pay their dues. The descriptive list of Millennials in the workplace has at times been more negative than positive. A lot of this stems from the changing times in which they were raised. The fall of the Berlin Wall, the rise of internet and e-commerce, personal computers and cell phones, 9/11 and the Great Recession were events that shaped the way Millennials approach their lives and careers. And, you can add to the list helicopter parents, structured learning with praise and immediate feedback, always part of a team with a focus on community over the individual and resume building activities to land the right career. This conflicts with the do-it-yourself mentality that most executives, and most logistics, procurement and manufacturing professionals, have had to deal with to survive in a rapidly changing world.

But, do those stereotypes hold true for Millennials in the supply chain? That was the question we set out to answer in our survey of Millennial readers of Supply Chain Management Review and members of APICS and APQC (For more, see About our research). The good news: Our research paints a very different picture from the stereotypes listed above. To the contrary, we found a group of enterprising entrepreneurs that want to tinker with processes and understand how the business was built so it can be improved. The idea of being an island is foreign to them—to be successful means being part of a larger team with a shared vision. Continuous improvement isn’t only focused on processes, but on what they can do better to improve themselves. Think of them as your not-so-average supply chain Millennial.

Indeed, as you’ll see shortly, the survey respondents expect to work hard. They are staying with their employers for longer periods of time than their job-hopping peers. And while they are ambitious, they don’t expect to leap from their first job into the C-suite.

Read the full research here

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From the September-October 2017 edition of Supply Chain Management Review.

September-October 2017

When it comes to the next generation of supply chain management, the future just may be now. That’s one of the conclusions reached by Greg Gorbach, an analyst at the research firm ARC Advisory Group, after surveying…
Browse this issue archive.
Access your online digital edition.
Download a PDF file of the September-October 2017 issue.

Entitled, impatient, impetuous, narcissistic, self-absorbed, unwilling to pay their dues. The descriptive list of Millennials in the workplace has at times been more negative than positive. A lot of this stems from the changing times in which they were raised. The fall of the Berlin Wall, the rise of internet and e-commerce, personal computers and cell phones, 9/11 and the Great Recession were events that shaped the way Millennials approach their lives and careers. And, you can add to the list helicopter parents, structured learning with praise and immediate feedback, always part of a team with a focus on community over the individual and resume building activities to land the right career. This conflicts with the do-it-yourself mentality that most executives, and most logistics, procurement and manufacturing professionals, have had to deal with to survive in a rapidly changing world.

But, do those stereotypes hold true for Millenials in the supply chain? That was the question we set out to answer in our survey of Millennial readers of Supply Chain Management Review and members of APICS and APQC (For more, see About our research). The good news: Our research paints a very different picture from the stereotypes listed above. To the contrary, we found a group of enterprising entrepreneurs that want to tinker with processes and understand how the business was built so it can be improved. The idea of being an island is foreign to them—to be successful means being part of a larger team with a shared vision. Continuous improvement isn't only focused on processes, but on what they can do better to improve themselves. Think of them as your not-so-average supply chain Millennial.

Indeed, as you'll see shortly, the survey respondents expect to work hard. They are staying with their employers for longer periods of time than their job-hopping peers. And while they are ambitious, they don't expect to leap from their first job into the C-suite.

Read the full research here

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MR

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