Logistics insights and trends for 2016 and beyond

As the UK’s largest specialist logistics recruiter we are always looking to provide insight into current trends within the logistics sector.
In conjunction with ITN and CILT, we recently visited the Kurt Geiger Warehouse in Northampton to understand how the changing retail landscape and shifting consumer expectations are currently impacting the sector. Our video of the visit contains interviews with John Waldock, Head of Logistics for Kurt Geiger, and Carl Moore, formerly Group Operations Director for UK Mail, for first-hand insights into these trends. 
Please click to view the film.  

The trends outlined in the video have meant that the logistics sector has showed further employment growth in 2016 against a challenging economic backdrop.
Some of the contributing key factors are: 
  • continued growth in e-fulfilment, increasing consumer expectations around delivery, and the associated impact on logistics; 
  • the impact leading to a demand from employers for higher calibre candidates, in possession of a wide range of skills, to fill key job types; and
  • interim managers being utilised to a greater degree to cover peak trading periods, and also to fulfil project management requirements.

Continued growth in e-fulfilment and distribution centres 

E-Commerce in the UK continues to grow and evolve quickly as retailers and distributors attempt to satisfy consumer demand more quickly, and efficiently. The announcement by Amazon Fresh that orders for their new service made before 11am will be delivered on the same day, is a good example of this continued trend.
These changes mean that many distribution operations and networks are having to be re-configured in order to cater for these trends, and it has also led to employers looking for candidates who have the aptitude and skills to deal with a much more complex working environment.
This growth is positively impacting the amount of new build distribution centres (both speculative and planned) currently in process as higher specification facilities are required to fulfil enhanced services. 

Some examples include the following. 

  • Primark in Islip , Northampton; 
  • Lidl in Avonmouth;
  • Ted Baker in Derby; and 
  • The Range in Avonmouth. 
The above trends mean demand for logistics professionals continues to increase both in quantity (number of jobs available) and quality (employers are looking for higher skilled candidates, due to increased complexity of many of the positions). This trend shows no sign of abating. 

Demand for interim managers 

This continued e-fulfilment growth has also helped contribute to an increased demand for interim managers across many logistics job types, and we have seen the number of interim placements double in the first half of this year.
With certain skills in short supply, interim managers can provide a quick solution if pressure to fill a vacancy becomes too great. Interim managers provide a solution to many of the short-term project management skills required to facilitate new build distribution centres, network re-configuration, and operational changes as detailed above.
Many companies also use interim managers to provide effective management cover during peak trading periods which have been exacerbated by industry events such as Black Friday.
If you have a specific logistics requirement and are searching for the right interim manager for a key period, please contact Ben Lyons, Operating Director, Michael Page and Page Personnel Logistics.
T: +44 121 230 9361
E: benlyons@michaelpage.com