Poor productivity and high staff turnover for logistics operations are symptoms of a critical deficiency in three key areas of management capability identified in the Peplow 2008 survey of 11,269 managers in UK industry. It found that there is a major skills gap – not just in technical competency but in management skills.
This relates to the ability to organise projects and staff; train and delegate; and also think clearly and analytically.
The analysis was by interactive multimedia assessment to measure 12 manager competencies, using the Managerial Assessment of Proficiency.
Deficiencies impact on businesses in a range of supply chain activities, according to the survey authors, where managers often supervise a remote or mobile workforce, and have to deploy people in the right place at the right time. Recurring issues are faults in the management of resources; inaccuracy in estimating and recording data for each job; and poor quality, such as errors in deliveries.
In assessing training solutions, education more than experience is the factor that most influences a manager’s level of proficiency, according to the survey data. Relevant competence must be learned: it is not instinctive and cannot adequately be ‘picked up on the job’. Certain key requirements were found to be critical to successful training. Firstly, for sustainable impact and long-term change, an organisational development programme should include large groups from the company and engage on three levels simultaneously: individuals, teams and the organisation. The process of objective measurement and benchmarking itself is important in staff development, it said.