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Supply Chain & Procurement Market Update Q1, 2020
The recruitment market for Supply Chain and Procurement remained very robust for 2019. Companies ranging from multinationals to SMEs continue to realise the importance of the Supply Chain function particularly to the overall productivity of an organisation. Although fears that Brexit would have a major impact on organisations who import and export from the UK in particular have not yet been fully realised, there is uncertainty about the coming months.
The FMCG, Food, and Pharmaceutical sectors remained the most active sectors in recruiting of Supply Chain professionals throughout the year. In relation to procurement, we have seen a rise in demand for these professionals within the Technology and Construction sectors, which reflects those sectors’ continuing growth in the marketplace.
The market for Supply Chain professionals has undergone change over the past number of years. For example, within the Pharmaceutical sector, the traditional role would have been on-site within the manufacturing plant, but in recent years there have been a number of new start-up organisations who recruit Supply Chain professionals to work on a virtual basis, as the manufacturing sites are based in locations remote from Ireland such as Mexico, Puerto Rico and Eastern Europe, due to the attractiveness of reduced labour costs.
Salaries within the Supply Chain and Procurement sector continued to increase this year, partly in response to the continuing challenge of sourcing experienced candidates. The market has reached a saturation point where companies are loath to lose employees, due in part to the time it will take to find a replacement, and this in turn has created a culture where counter-offers are much more common than in past years.
There is still a gap in salaries when it comes to differing regions; for example, a company in the Midlands will not offer the same salary for a Supply Chain Manager as a company in Dublin, partly due to the different cost of living in each respective area. Adding to this point, we have seen an increase in the reluctance of candidates based outside Dublin to consider positions in the city for the above reason. This is an ongoing issue that is set to continue, as Dublin and the east coast are where most of the existing companies and new investments tend to be based.
Within the Supply Chain and Procurement sector, it is very hard to predict how next year will pan out due to the ongoing uncertainty around Brexit. Logistics and Transportation-type positions are a major part of Supply Chain, and these roles will be directly affected if any adverse customs conditions are put in place.
In relation to the sector as a whole, I would be hopeful there will still be a strong demand for positions within this sector, with Demand/Supply Planners, Procurement Specialists, and Category Managers coming to mind.
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