Jobs Situation Report 11th Edition
Redeploying and reskilling workers to take on higher-value roles created by industry’s transformation efforts
- This week’s Jobs Situation Report focuses on the Logistics Industry. The report highlights the number of available openings in the Industry and the government’s efforts to help local jobseekers access them.
Overview of the Logistics Industry
- A key pillar of Singapore’s economy, the Logistics Industry contributed a value-add of $6.8 billion (amounting to 1.4% of GDP) and employs more than 86,000 workers across more than 5,300 unique entities in 2019.
- The industry plays a key role in connecting supply chains to facilitate efficient flow of goods domestically and internationally, supporting key industries such as food, electronics, pharmaceuticals, retail, and construction. Over the years, Singapore has successfully built up and maintain our status as a leading logistic hub in Asia.
COVID-19’s impact on the Industry
- Like many other industries, the logistics industry was also impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the larger Transport and Storage Sector, logistics saw a severe reduction in airfreight capacity, a shortage of workers arising from border lockdowns, and reduced efficiency due to safe distancing measures.
- The effects of COVID-19 within the industry were uneven;
- Those serving hard-hit sectors such as aviation and aerospace were more adversely affected, while those providing e-commerce, last-mile fulfilment services and serving critical sectors such as healthcare saw a surge in demand for their services.
- Businesses which were able to pivot quickly to capture new business opportunities arising from COVID-19 also remained resilient.
- Changing consumer behaviour arising from COVID-19 has accelerated the growth of e-Commerce services and adoption of technology. Logistics companies such as Moovaz Logistics and Ninja Logistics are leveraging technology such as Artificial intelligence and Cloud computing to reinvent and disrupt traditional logistics business models and create new growth areas.
- 4th Party Logistics (4PL) providers such as DB Schenker and Pacific Logistics Group are also looking to capitalise on the growing demand for supply chain management services and solutions. These companies have embarked on business transformation and digitalisation projects to develop new capabilities, expand their capacity and prepare for post-pandemic recovery. To support these expansion and transformation efforts, these companies continued to hire despite the downturn.
- To support the manpower needs of the industry, Workforce Singapore (WSG) worked with logistics companies with hiring demand to take in workers from companies in hard-hit sectors, such as aerospace, aviation and hotel sectors, on secondment basis through the SGUnited Jobs Initiative.
- For example, DB Schenker took in 21 logistics assistants, seconded workers from Razor Solutions, a subcontractor specialising in aviation ground operations.
- Between Apr 2020 and Sep 2020, close to 380 workers in hard-hit sectors were able to continue working through this arrangement.
SGUnited Jobs and Skills Openings in the Logistics Industry
- As at end-September, there were more than 2,100 available openings in the Logistics Industry, of which more than 60% are jobs (see Chart 1 below).
- As the logistics industry requires a workforce to carry out functions such as Warehousing, transportation, and value-added services (labelling, packaging, etc.), the majority (64%) of jobs are non-PMET roles such as transport clerks, material handlers, transport specialists and freight coordinators. The remaining 36% are in PMET roles such as Regional Sales Manager, Logistics Manager, Logistics System / Solution Specialists and e-Commerce Executives.
- Salaries offered depend on the specific job roles and candidate’s fit.
Growing Industry with ease of entry and good career prospects
- The logistic sector offers a range of roles for jobseekers with different backgrounds. In fact, it is one of the most welcoming of mid-career switchers.
- Employers in the industry often look beyond qualifications when hiring and are open to jobseekers with working experience from other sectors.
- This is because these jobseekers bring a wealth of experience and networks from other sectors which help logistics companies pivot into new opportunities and further their business interests.
- At the same time, logistics companies are increasingly adopting new technology and developing new capabilities in Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and robotics as part of their transformation efforts has created new or higher-value roles for existing workers and jobseekers looking to join the industry. These higher value-job roles include System Integrator, Logistic System Engineer, Supply Chain Analyst and Automation Specialist
- To help existing PMET and Rank-and-File workers in the industry reskill and upskill, Workforce Singapore (WSG) rolled out various programmes including the Redeployment Programme for Supply Chain and Logistics Coordinators and the Redeployment PCP for Supply Chain and Logistics Professionals.
- Between January and September this year, close to 90 workers in companies such as ST Logistics, YCH Group and Singapore Storage and Warehousing, have been reskilled through these programmes.
- They were equipped with new competencies for their new roles which require them to operate or manage new technologies and systems such as Automated Guided Vehicles (AGV), drones and integrated warehouse and freight management system.
- These skills will help them develop their career pathways.
- To bring in mid-career jobseekers, employers can tap on WSG’s career conversion programmes, including:
- 9-month PCP for Logistics Officer and Executive which reskills mid-career professionals to take on roles in logistics planning and operations.
- 9-month PCP for Supply Chain Professionals to reskill mid-career PMETs to take up roles in in areas such as solutions designing, data analytics, planning and sourcing, supply chain planning, project management, and supply chain engineering in both logistics service providers and non-logistics companies.
- 9-month PCP for e-Commerce Supply Chain Professionals to equip mid-career professionals with skills in e-Commerce Supply Chain Management in order to take up roles in areas such as e-Commerce Supply Chain Manager, e-Commerce Platform Manager, Distribution and Marketing Manager, etc.
- 3-month Place-and-Train (PnT) Programme for Postal Service Coordinators which equip mid-career professionals to take up roles such as Postal Ambassador, and Postal Officer.
- 3-Month PnT Programme for Supply Chain and Logistics Coordinators which equips mid-career jobseekers to take up roles such as Traffic controller, Logistics Specialist and AGV / Drone Operator.
- From April to September 2020, more than 250 mid-career individuals have made the switch into logistics through these career conversion programmes.
- One of them is 51-year-old Noraman bin Ibrahim.
- The single father of two decided to leave his previous job as a Private Hire Vehicle driver in Dec 2019 for better job security and prospects. However, COVID-19 hindered his job search.
- An outgoing individual, Noraman would make it a point to converse with his passengers whenever he could and this paid off.
- Through a referral from one of his passengers, he applied for a job opening with Storbest and successfully joined the cold chain logistics company as a Warehouse Executive through the PCP for Logistics Executive in Apr 2020.
- While it was not his first stint in logistics – having left a tobacco logistics company in 2017 – Noraman had to reorient himself with the new work environment and learn how to handle cold chain operations and perishable food. He acquired new skills and knowledge, such as cold chain management, food hygiene, storage, etc.
- Jobseekers with little or no prior experience can also consider taking up the following to gain exposure to the work in Logistics Industry:
- Company-hosted traineeships and attachments under the SGUnited Traineeships and SGUnited Mid-Career Pathways Programmes.
- Training courses under the SGUnited Skills Programme.
- Examples include Up-Skill in Logistics Management (Temasek Polytechnic), Be a Logistician (Institute of Technical Education), SGUS Programme in Supply Chain Management (Republic Polytechnic) and Advanced Diploma in Logistics & Supply Chain Management & Transformation (Singapore Management University).
- One example is 26-year-old Janessa Ong, a fresh graduate with a Bachelor of Business in Logistics & Supply Chain Management who is currently onboard the SGUnited Traineeships Programme as an operation executive trainee with ST Logistics.
- In order to secure a stronger footing in the job market when the economy improves, Janessa decided to go for a traineeship to gain hands-on experience and be exposed to the real-world work environment.
- She sees a lot of growth potential in logistics, especially with the rise of Industry 4.0, and has a keen interest in digitalisation and technology. ST Logistics, with its pursuit and adoption of latest technologies to augment and improve its operations, was able to satisfy Janessa’s interest in these areas.
- As part of her traineeship, Janessa was placed on a rotational programme which allows her to experience different department’s processes and work, including how an AI-powered system could make the supply chain more resilient.
- She also received advice and guidance from her seniors in the workplace, which helped shape her views on her own career pathway and hopes to continue progressing in logistics even after her traineeship completes.
- Table 1 highlights some of the transferrable skills from other sectors and skills that enhanc career prospects for mid-career individuals who are keen to enter the Logistics industry.
- Between April to September 2020, 710 individuals have been placed into jobs, company-hosted traineeships and training openings in the Logistics industry.
- Close to 600 found jobs; more than 40% were mature workers.
- Others have enrolled in traineeships and attachments such as Operations Executive Trainee, Shipping Officer Trainee, Logistics Analyst Trainee, Software Development Specialist Trainee, Supply Chain Management Trainee and IT Application Trainee since June.
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