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Complete a 2000-word assignment that demonstrates knowledge and understanding of current labour market trends relevant to the industry (Logistics and supply chain industry in Australia) in which you hope to become an employed graduate. Bring together your research – labour market data, statistics and general information (Parts 1), together with the company/organisation specific labour market research (Parts 2) and the information gathered through the Investigative interview (Parts 3). Identify factors that have led to changes in labour market composition within a specific industry or discipline over the last 5 years. Espouse a position, based on your research, of what might be expected to happen in the sector in the coming 5 years. 

Part 1: Research and examine labour market data, statistics, and information related to your field of work or industry. Identify challenges faced by your industry, and pinpoint changes which have occurred over the past 5 years giving consideration to: globalisation, economic structural changes, advances in technology, disruption and innovation. 

Part 2: Identify a company within a discipline-specific industry or field of work, where there may be graduate employment opportunities. This might include local or global companies, government or non-government organisations or others including start-ups. Conduct a research study of the company / organisation to: 

 a) identify factors that have impacted it, and the sector more generally, over the last 5 years, 

 b) factors that are likely to impact it, and the sector, in the coming 5 years.

Part 3: Conduct an Investigative Interview with an employee or manager working in a company or organisation where the business activities are relevant to your discipline. This may be a staff member from the company you have identified in Part 2, or a Swinburne Alumni, a graduate from another university, a friend or family member or somebody else from your personal or professional network. The purpose of the interview is to gather ‘first-hand’ information about labour market changes and trends. The information from the interview will be integrated and synthesised with other information from the research in Part 1 and Part 2. 


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The present report demonstrates a detailed understanding of the Logistics and supply chain industry in Australia. Logistics and Supply Chain Management is the planning and controlling of the activities of an organization which includes transportation of raw materials and finished goods to the end customers (Prajogo, Oke, & Olhager, 2016). Logistics includes the coordination and corporation in the movement of goods, while in the supply chain industry there includes multiple activities such as operations and procurement for the smooth execution of the company. Logistics and supply chain operations are referred to as a continuous process that requires a regular strategic planning process to develop innovative operations. At the present time, the industry has transformed with the integration of software and digital technology which has increased the productivity and efficiency rate and creates a sustainable mode of transporting goods from one place to the other. In Australia, this industry has a high scope to develop new start-ups which will eventually create new job opportunities for the people. With this development in the industry, the report by Fayezi, Zutshi, & O'Loughlin, (2015) has stated that the Australian logistics and supply chain market will rise up to AUD 187 billion by the year 2021. In context to supply chain, the trucking industry in Australia has transformed into the nation's backbone over the last 5 years. It is because, most of the commercial activities in Australia are heavily dependent on the movement of goods. The Freight logistics and trucking industry of Australia are found to account for at least 30.4% of the nation’s total freight task (Wang, Jie, & Abareshi, 2015). 

In this report, we will discuss the logistics and supply chain industry in three different parts. Part 1 comprises of the labor market data statistics, general information and challenges in this specific industry. Part 2 conducts research about the labor market on a company belonging to this industry. In the final part, an investigative interview is conducted to gather this industry-related information. 

Part 1

Logistics and supply chain industry are considered as a complex field since it involves managing and transportation of goods and services through different modes like road, rail, air, and sea. This industry has made the deliver of goods from one location to another in a safe and efficient manner. Based on a recent statistical report, the job satisfaction rate of employees involved in this industry is 4.3 out of 5. 50.  57% of graduates joining the transport and logistics industry are from the finance, accounting, economics and business field of study (Wang et al, 2015). The report illustrates that approximately 62% of the employees in this industry have entered with only their bachelor's degree (Chileshe, Rameezdeen, & Hosseini, 2016). 

Most of the job opportunities in this field include managers, supervisors, schedulers, educators, truck drivers, and forklift drivers. According to the report of Australian industry standards, the logistics and supply chain industry has an approximate annual revenue of $96.65 billion (Chileshe et al 2016). There are approximately 40000 of small and medium-sized businesses out of 2 million Australian companies which deal with supply chain and logistics-related activities. This industry employs approximately 500000 people in its different sectors, like transportation, warehousing, logistics and stevedoring (Wang et al, 2015). According to the transport and logistics data in the year 2018, the revenue collected from the industry is approximately $96.65 billion, with a profit of $10.416 (Wang et al, 2015). This industry has an employment growth opportunity by 2023 up to 3.3% (Wang et al 2015). 

According to a recent study on the market research by Ken Research, it has been identified that Australia's logistics and supply chain industry has become worth $187 billion in the present time (Fayezi et al, 2015). This rapid increase is due to the integration of digitalization with the supply chain which has led to an evolution in terms of increased productivity and efficiency. Furthermore, the digital-based supply chain system has also opened several sustainable modes for goods transportation from one place to the other. With the introduction of the e-commerce sector and artificial intelligence for the past few years, the requirement of warehousing has increased, especially in the pharmaceutical, ancillary and chemical sector. There has also been an increase in the cold chain logistics with the increasing demand for agricultural products of Australia from other nations. This increase in demand reflects the development of agricultural exports from Australia to other countries through different transportation facilities. Within the past 5 years, the Australian government has invested in the development of road, air, rail, and water transportation modes, which has eventually drive the industry for better and faster transportation of goods (Zhong, Newman, Huang, & Lan, 2016). 

Besides numerous development, the industry has also faced many challenges in the past few years. During the peak season or festive season such as Christmas, the industry has to bear congestion due to limited space in the warehouse. Along with this, the peak season also results in high freight costs, which is approximately 80% more than other transportation facilities.  Sometimes, unavailability of Freight services results in delays which eventually creates an extra headache for the logistics manager. In some cases, the delay also results in the cancellation of the order by the customer.  However, based on the last survey report in 2017, the employees in the logistics and supply chain industry are experiencing a shortage of skills, which is an added challenge for the industry (Alexander, & Merkert, 2017). Most of the employees have also reported job dissatisfaction which results in employee turnover. The primary reasons for employee dissatisfaction are low salary, the aging workforce, unattractive jobs, and competition from other companies (Alexander et al, 2017)

Part 2

One of the leading transport and logistics companies in Australia is SCT Logistics. It is the largest private rail freight operator, which was established in the year 1974 (Ghaderi, Cahoon, & Nguyen, 2017). It has expanded its operation all over Australia and has diversified facilities such as contract warehousing and refrigerated transport services. Besides this, it also provides customized solutions within the rail transportation sector. It uses the most advanced and innovative technology locomotive fleet services for the transportation of freight in an efficient manner. It comprises of steerable biggies which causes minimum track wear and noise. It also consists of the forklift dive in/dive out facilities for an efficient product managing system. The company offers various job opportunities for graduates, such as analyst, consultant, logistic engineers, Logistics managers, customer service, purchasing manager, inventory manager, supply chain manager, supply chain coordinator, scheduling clerk, and warehouse manager (Ghaderi et al, 2017). These jobs are offered to the candidates on the basis of their experience, skills, and educational field. 

a) Factors impacted the industry for last 5 years

Over the past few years, there has been an increased use of air freight service for faster delivery service. This, in turn, reduces rail freight services, which is presently observed in SCT logistics. It is a common belief that railway or road transportation service can lead to a delay in transporting goods, which forces retailers to choose other options like air freight. Moreover, the complex custom clearance and procedures involved in border crossings lead to a poor timely liability journey. The collection of fees, tax, and duties for checks and controls also costs additional price as compared to the fees charged to the customers for goods delivery, which eventually cause a loss for the rail freight service department. On December 4, 2015, the SCT Logistics faced an accident in which 39 wagons we're derailed leading to the burning of some wagons and a refrigerated food van (Ghaderi et al, 2017). The factors associated with this accident is the unpredictable local weather condition, where the thunderstorm causes derailment of the lighter wagons. 

b) Factors that are likely to impact the industry in the coming 5 years

In the coming 5 years, the rail freight sector is expected to excel in terms of reliability, time effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness. In the peak seasons, the air freight sector increases its price to a higher extent, which makes the retailer choose rail service. In this consideration, the rail service sector is planning to improve its service and deliver the goods in minimum possible time. The Australia government is working towards increasing the number of the rail network, which will eventually reduce the connectivity distance and goods can be delivered faster with minimum expense towards fuel (Wang et al, 2015). With the availability of terminal sites in the future, the distance between the terminal and end-user can be optimized easily. In addition to this, it is also expected that the gaps within the Intermodal terminal capacity in various regions like Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth are expected to rise in the future years (Ghaderi et al, 2017). Furthermore, with the emergence of e-commerce business to the Australian market like Amazon, there is an expected increase in the revenue of the logistics and supply chain companies, especially the rail freight service (Fayezi et al, 2015).  

Part 3

For gathering ‘first-hand’ information, an investigative interview is conducted on a Logistics Manager. The information gathered from the interviewee has been paraphrased in this given section. Based on the report collected from the Logistics manager, it has been identified that with the growth of e-commerce sector, the talented graduates from Logistics and supply chain department will be recruited in future for different job roles. This industry is open for all types of graduates, however, having a specific degree in logistics and transportation management is more preferable. With increasing competition, the industry is also seeking candidates having a post-graduate certificate with additional training experience. Based on current demand, the important skill in this industry includes compliance, health, operational, driving and digital. Apart from these skills, there are some genetic workforce skills such as managerial, learning agility, language literacy and numeracy (LLN), critical thinking, problem-solving, data analysis, social intelligence, and effective communication.

In this context, most of the graduates are completing a Masters course in Logistics and Supply Chain Management program, white is a one-year full-time course. It provides candidates with additional skills related to problem-solving, statistics, spreadsheet modeling, consultancy, and analytics (Ghaderi et al, 2017). In the future, more vacancies will be available. At present, SCT logistics offers job vacancies for three different roles; truck driver MC or HC, train coordinator, and fleet controller. The company provides training to new employees, which helped them to gain more knowledge about transport services. According to the interviewee, the company maintains good safety standards and conducts political surveillance of the trucks and wagons to avoid any kind of misfortune. Despite several work opportunities in this industry, the workers are bound to work for overtime during certain parts of the year, especially during peak seasons and seasonal time. There is an overload of work which includes maintenance of paperwork for the inbound freight arrival and departure by the locomotive. Doing this period, extra staff are located for loading and unloading processes and controlling inventory priority orders. Each employee has to work for a maximum of 6 and 1/2 days per week with at least 12 hours per day, which sometimes creates work-life imbalance. Due to the provision of sound wages for the work, the employees prefer to work in this industry. Despite a good salary package, most of the employees are unsatisfied with the career prospects available in this industry. This industry does not follow a straight flow of work pressure, rather follows up and down based on customer demand (Fayezi et al, 2015). 

Conclusion and Synthesis

In summary, the report illustrates a detailed understanding of the labor market in the logistics and supply chain industry in Australia, by using a case example of SCT logistics. It has been identified that the industry have witnessed several changes with the introduction of digitalization and e-commerce, which has positively affected its revenue. An investigative interview is also conducted for understanding the labor market changes in the industry. From the interview, it has been inferred that the employees have to work for overtime during peak seasons which often create work-life imbalance. Thus, it is the responsibility of the management team to distribute work evenly among different employees. Additionally, employees can also work in two shifts, which will ultimately decrease the workload. 

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