2023 salary and skills trends in manufacturing, procurement, and supply chain

Posted on 27 Feb 2023 by The Manufacturer
Partner Content

The last few years have been turbulent for both employers and workers in manufacturing, procurement, and supply chain. In 2023, economic forecasts are tightening, and large-scale talent shortages remain across the sector. The key to successful hiring in this market is having a robust understanding of the latest salary benchmarks, where top talent is available, and what hiring timelines to plan to.

That’s why Michael Page’s 2023 Guide to Salaries and Hiring Strategy in Manufacturing, Procurement, and Supply Chain provides exclusive market data, including latest salary benchmarks for dozens of roles across the industry in different regions and specialisms.

Here we’ll be previewing some of the exclusive insights you can access in the guide.

How much demand is there for manufacturing, procurement, and supply chain talent?

Over the past three months, around 160,000 manufacturing, procurement, and supply chain roles have been advertised, with roughly 28,000 companies advertising roles within these specialisms.

The most popular roles among our clients in engineering and manufacturing were:

  1. Engineering Project Manager
  2. Maintenance Manager: Mechanical/Electrical
  3. Health and Safety Manager
  4. Manufacturing/Production Supervisor
  5. Mechanical Project Engineer
  6. Operations Manager
  7. Production Manager
  8. Production Quality Supervisor
  9. Production Engineer
  10. Quality Engineer

Meanwhile, the most popular roles in procurement and supply chain were:

  1. Head of Supply Chain
  2. S&OP Lead
  3. Purchasing Manager
  4. Category Manager
  5. Supply Chain Manager
  6. Planning Manager
  7. Head of Procurement
  8. Head of Demand Planning
  9. Supply Planning Manager
  10. Senior Buyer

With such fierce competition for talent, mistakes in the hiring process can easily cost employers top candidates.

Michael Page Manufacturing has received around 16,000 manufacturing, procurement, and supply chain applications in the last three months. This unique bird’s-eye view of hiring processes in the sector enables the team to help clients optimise their hiring strategies.

Ruth Hancock, Operating Director at Michael Page Manufacturing, commented: “To compete for top talent, your recruitment needs to be well planned, streamlined, and engaging. If you’re aiming to attract the very best people, we would suggest mapping out your hiring process early on and prioritising the candidate experience. That starts with the job advert and continues all the way to onboarding, and your retention plan.”

Joe Walton, Director of Michael Page Manufacturing, highlighted the need for an agile approach to compliment a stringent recruitment process: “Many manufacturers are struggling to find the people they need to drive growth and expansion. However, our clients have been able to get around the candidate shortage by revisiting their hiring requirements, searching for people with a great attitude who can be upskilled, and casting a wider net to areas outside their narrow disciplines.”

Michael Page’s 2023 Manufacturing Salary Guide breaks down regional salary brackets for the roles discussed above, and many more.

The rise of the new leader in manufacturing

Leadership styles in the industry are changing fast. The new generation of leaders have fresh approaches to managing teams, retaining talent, and driving productivity. Understanding this is critical not only when hiring at the senior level, but also when hiring more junior candidates that will one day enter leadership positions.

Here are some of the key capabilities that modern manufacturing leaders need to have:

  • Technical knowledge and expertise: While the technical side of manufacturing is developing fast, the emerging pool of leadership candidates is not defined by this.

In fact, the following two competencies have emerged as equally if not more important:

  • Change management: Creating and executing a structured approach to guiding an organisation through change.
  • Employee engagement: The ability of a leader to maintain engagement, enthusiasm, and productivity among their people.

Our market specialists have identified the essential traits of a manufacturing leader in an era of large-scale transformation and talent shortages:

  1. Adaptable
  2. Development focused
  3. Engaging and empathetic
  4. Inclusive
  5. Innovative and forward thinking

Jonathan Weller, Business Director at Michael Page Procurement and Supply Chain, commented: “We have seen a huge focus on leadership roles, with business leaders prioritising candidates with strong engagement skills, and ability to drive sustainable change.”

What next?

To navigate this challenging hiring market effectively, you will need up to date market insights and data on salaries, hiring timelines, and talent supply and demand.

For all this and more, access Michael Page’s free 2023 Guide to Salaries and Hiring Strategy in Manufacturing and Procurement and Supply Chain today.

Or, to discuss your hiring needs or your next career move, get in touch with the team.