Supply chain staff hailed as heroes

Health care workers are defined as key workers, but it is increasingly being recognised that supply chain workers are unexpected heroes of the COVID-19 crisis.

Distribution and warehouse workers have kept the country functioning during the pandemic by picking, packing and delivering goods to homes, alongside making sure that supermarket shelves are stocked. The supply chains are a major source of employment, but this is not solely due to the coronavirus – there was an existing growth in eCommerce, which the COVID-19 crisis has accelerated.

Many people who lost their jobs due to the impact the lockdown had on many industries have now been recruited for supply chain jobs. For example, Tesco has retrained airline pilots as delivery drivers.

The success of online retailers has also caused criticism of some employers, whose fast order systems have placed harmful pressure on employees.

Dr Andrew Lahy, the Co-director of the PARC Institute of Manufacturing Logistics and Inventory at Cardiff University, said that successful companies combine processes and technology with care for their staff. He added:

“It doesn’t matter how good your processes and your technology are, in the end, supply chains are about people.”

Staff members who are not treated well may not stay long, and keeping supply chain employees happy takes care. To do so, warehouses need equipment and systems that are easy to work with. A warehouse equipment manufacturer supplies safe storage trolleys, warehouse racks and packing tables, which minimise the stretching and twisting of the body that cause injury.

Posted by Mark
12th October 2020
Retail & Warehousing

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