South Africa currently ranks 61st out of 137 countries within the 2017/2018 Global Competitive Index (World Economic Forum, 2017). One of the Index’s main critiques against the country is its inadequately educated workforce, which re-affirms the critical role of education and skills development.
It is imperative that the country ensures efficient and effective skills development and training delivery within industry, informed and driven by industry demands, within a clearly-devised strategy that partners with all role players within the economy.
It is within this context that progress is being made on a framework for the development of supply chain management (SCM) professionals within South Africa, Ingrid du Buisson, Deputy Chairperson of Professionalisation for the Interim SCM Council, told SmartProcurement.
A key challenge that the project has faced in developing SCM occupational qualifications is that the concept of SCM is rarely understood in its truest form and thus interpreted differently among the various economic sectors within South Africa. As an example, within the public sector, procurement is understood to be SCM.
To address this challenge, we have applied a systems-thinking approach to developing the framework for SCM professionalisation and the associated occupational qualifications. Systems theory is a theoretical perspective that analyses a phenomenon viewed as a whole, not simply as the sum of its elementary parts.
Therefore, the framework for SCM professionalisation is being developed in the context of the South African economy being a ‘system’ in which qualified supply chain professionals will operate.
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