Supply chain management is critical to business success in all industries and greater economic growth can be achieved by improving the skills in this profession.
Recognition for excellence in supply chain skills development was given to Sasol, Imperial Logistics, the Centre for Logistics Excellence (CLX), and Chené Scholtz from the University of Johannesburg at the Supply Chain Management Education Excellence Awards (SCMEEA) held during the recent SAPICS regional conference in Gauteng.
“The lack of supply chain skills has its founding in a mismatch between education and training on the one hand and the needs of the commerce and industry on the other,” explains Mungo Park, president of SAPICS – the industry association for supply chain professionals.
“There have however been numerous engagements with the public sector and many excellent initiatives in the private sector. The SCMEEA was founded 10 years ago to recognise and award organisations and universities that are committed to bridge the skills gap that keep hampering many industries.”
In the category “Medium to Large Vocational Employer of the Year” Sasol was recognised for its new and aspirational global skills development programme.
Supply Chain Solis was created to increase training and development opportunities within the Sasol Supply Chain Global fraternity. Work commenced in June 2015 to empower all supply chain professionals to be developed holistically along the same skills set relevant to global Sasol operations. The curriculum currently consists of ten suites addressing different work streams across end to end supply chain management.
“Sasol decided to create an extensive in-house training initiative in line with its new operating model that resulting from a massive restructuring,” said Eoné Marnewick, Specialist in SC Enablement, Upstream and Business Enablement at Sasol. “We needed a curriculum and facilitators that understood our niche requirements and had practical examples of their own.”
In developing the initiative, the implementation team looked at best practice in industry, and how it is applicable in current and future Sasol operations.
“The benefit of using our own internal facilitators are that they are already established, trusted, experienced supply chain professionals known in industry,” explained Marnewick. “The skills and knowledge transfer by the facilitators is a fantastic way for them to give back to the industry, and it also adds incredible value to the students as they are privy to up-to-the-minute practical examples explained by the experts dealing with everyday supply chain management.”
In the same category Imperial Logistics was recognised for its established, effective, and constantly evolving workforce skills development.
The Imperial Logistics Academy was created to support employees in a practical way with learning and career development needs. The Academy is currently staffed by ten permanent employees and a wide network of associate facilitators, assessors, moderators, and curriculum designers working on 4 strategic pillars.
“The four strategic pillars of the Academy are workplace experience programmes, formal education; skills development compliance, and professional development,” said Colette Wessels, Training and Development Executive at Imperial Logistics. “Through research, sponsorships and partnerships, Imperial Logistics contributes to the thought leadership and innovation through formal education, skills training and learning in the supply chain and logistics management disciplines.”
In the category “Occupationally Directed Education & Training Providers” the Centre for Logistics Excellence (CLX) was recognised for innovative training methodologies based on traditional core values. The ethos of CLX is to teach departments and business units something new in a way that has not been taught before and that is fun.
“The overarching philosophy that guides the programme is that it should teach the theoretical skills required to improve a student’s grasp of the subject,” explained Liezel van Jaarsveld, Director at CLX. “To keep students excited about the learning process, is it however necessary to create fun and a little weirdness while pursuing growth and learning.”
Chené Scholtz – a student of the Department of Supply Chain and Logistics at the University of Johannesburg – was recognised in the category “Higher Education and Training Student”. “Disruptive technologies and business models drive a global paradigm shift regarding what opportunity digital format holds for supply chains,” said Scholtz. “The future supply chain will be a digital network of resources and capabilities, spread between different participants in the external environment.”
According to the entry submitted by Scholtz, technologies such as artificial intelligence, augmented reality, simulation, and 4D printing may in the near future plan, organise, and process supply chain activities and form an automated, unified machine that orchestrates its network to satisfy local trends and demand patterns.
The 2016 SCMEEA was sponsored by the Transport Education Training Authority (TETA).