3 Ways to Put Together the Best Supply Chain Management Teams

  • Supply Chain
  • Workforce
Learn 3 ways to put together the best supply chain management teams using best practices and mobile software.

John Maxwell said it best with his famously quoted phrase “Teamwork makes the dream work.” This reminder rings true in both life and the global supply chain industry. 

When building a profitable enterprise, success hinges not on cutting-edge technology but on the strength of the teams orchestrating these operations. The true power of a supply chain team lies in its cohesion—a unified force bound by trust, communication, and clear goals.

Let us explore three essential strategies for assembling the best supply chain management teams. Emphasis is on communication, internal hiring, specialization, and setting clear expectations.

Separate Labor into Segments

Many hands make light work. And modern warehouse managers are beginning to understand this. Dividing your workforce into specialized teams unlocks new levels of efficiency and builds experts.

Why Separating Groups Helps

Breaking down your supply chain into manageable groups leaves little room for error. It is easier for each group to stay focused on their specific role in the operations. Labor productivity is not an issue of vacancy but efficiency. Because when your people grow, so do your processes.


When you don each of your employees with multiple hats, you create a team of amateurs. By segmenting labor, you assign specific tasks to teams based on their skills and expertise. This way, your employees will grow into experts, increase productivity, and improve processes.

Reduced Training Costs:

As a result of specialization, you cut down on training costs. Rather than training each new hire on every aspect of warehouse operations, you can provide targeted training tailored to their assigned tasks, reducing training time and costs and ensuring that employees are fully proficient in their roles.

Here are some ways to segment labor:

  • Supply Chain Capabilities Group: This group manages supply chain tools and software: supply risk analysis, supplier scorecards, ERP software, business intelligence reporting, and other vendor data contained in the ERP software system. They are the first line of defense for identifying possible disruptions to the flow of goods or services.
  • Logistics Group: This group handles the carrier management system’s (CMS) entire fleet of vehicles, including trucks, railcars, barges, leased ocean vehicles, and trailers.
  • Supply Chain Optimization Group: Different than the supply chain capabilities group, these employees manage the sales, inventory, and operations planning process, more commonly known as SIOP.

Dividing the labor can have a significant impact on warehouse operations, organization, and overall ROI. This specialization builds experts on your team, increasing accuracy and productivity.

worker using mobile barcoding

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Employ the Right Employees

Dividing the labor means nothing if your laborers are inefficient. So, in constructing specialized groups within your supply chain team, it’s imperative to pick the right employees for the right teams.

Internal mobility is the best option for helping you put together the best supply chain management team and here’s why:

  • Experience: Internal employees have proven industry experience, they’re often already well-versed in the company’s offerings, and they understand how the business operates. This deep background allows them to transition from one department to another.
  • Reduced Costs: The cost of hiring and onboarding outweighs the cost of internal training. Invest in training your current employees and save on paperwork.
  • Cross-functional Capability: For existing employees who move from one department to another, internal mobility can provide greater value to their company and potential candidates. Because when they make decisions, they’re better able to predict how their choices will affect multiple stakeholders across the company.

Searching for talent within your four walls will be invaluable to building a supply chain management team. Internal hiring allows you to upskill your current employees. This shows your recognition and appreciation while improving labor productivity and cross-functional capabilities, and reducing onboarding costs.

What value does Continuous Availability offer? Continuous Availability solutions are invaluable for offline ERP inventory management.

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Improve Communication

Communication is the foundation for every strong relationship. And when your supply chain team collaborates with multiple stakeholders, clear communication becomes paramount. With modern mobility, you can unblock data silos and radically improve communication. Only with real-time visibility can you achieve 99.9% accuracy and improve decision-making.

Stakeholders may include:

  • Suppliers
  • Manufacturers
  • Distributors
  • Logistics
  • Providers
  • Customers

Clear and timely communication enables seamless information flow, facilitates decision-making, and helps resolve issues or challenges promptly. Without it, silos form within the supply chain, leading to inefficiencies, delays, and disruptions in operations, damaging your company’s ROI.

Gregg Richard Macaluso, a supply chain instructor at Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado, told Inbound Logistics that teams rarely congregate to discuss projects.

He shared, “We’re less able to communicate across the supply chain than ever before. The number of times team members actually meet in the same place where they can communicate effectively is limited.”

Assembling the Right People to Ensure Smooth Change Management


In order to put together the best supply chain management team, teams must meet. Prioritizing thirty minutes once or twice a week to share updates can help your team identify and quickly resolve issues in their infant stages. Here are some tips:

Consistent Team Meetings

Employees must meet often for trust, transparency, and understanding to be built and maintained. Discuss project updates, issues, frustrations, roadblocks, and helpful discoveries. Weekly or biweekly is recommended.

Provide Clear Direction

When undertaking new projects, set expectations, milestones, and deadlines early on. Divide the labor evenly and ensure each employee is clear on their deliverables. Your supply chain management strategy must include clear instructions to succeed.

Use Advanced Warehouse Inventory Tools

use intelligent warehouse automation software to improve communication and performance in the supply chain

Paper-based systems are inherently flawed because humans are flawed. Reduce your risk of bottlenecks by automating the process. Even your most productive and efficient employees will suffer at the hands of outdated mobile barcode scanning tools.

Investing in your UI/UX design can also help with this as your employees are more likely to use the modern technology if it’s well-designed and user-friendly.

While your ERP offers a comprehensive digital solution for your supply chain, the mobile interface is deeply intertwined with its user adoption rates. Consider improving your UI/UX to increase user adoption.

Without clear communication, strategies fall flat, and team members are left frustrated. Building a strong supply chain management team means building strong communicators. It is accomplished through weekly or bi-weekly team meetings, setting clear expectations, and investing in automated data collection to support your supply management team.

cover of RFgen Software white paper How to Achieve 100% Paperless Inventory with Mobile Barcoding

How to Achieve 100% Paperless Inventory


Place Value in Team Building

Do an audit of your supply chain management team and see where there are trouble spots. The constitution of your team will determine the health, efficiency, and smoothness of your warehouse operations. Focus on building experts, investing in your internal team, and improving communication with consistent meetings. And equip your team with modern technology that facilitates a streamlined workflow. By implementing these three strategies for putting together the best supply chain management team, you’ll set your enterprise on the path to a more profitable future.