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ThomasNet.com and ISM Challenge Supply Chain Professionals to Ensure their Industry's Future

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Press release date: June 2, 2014

Organizations Warn of Threat Posed by Generational Shift; Launch “30 Under 30” Program to Help Address Issue

New York, NY and Tempe, AZ — ThomasNet.com® and Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) today challenged purchasing/supply chain management professionals to take responsibility for the future of their industry, which depends on a new pipeline of talent from the Millennial (18-32) generation to maintain its strength.

“This is a pivotal moment for the supply chain profession,” said Mark Holst-Knudsen, President, ThomasNet. “Baby Boomers are retiring, and carrying their knowledge and skills out the door. Now is the time to attract and engage Millennials to take their place. In just eleven years, this generation will represent about 75 percent of the workforce.”

“Purchasing and supply chain management are among the most strategic careers in the global economy of the 21st century,” said Tom Derry, Chief Executive Officer, ISM. “Every day, supply chain professionals’ decisions affect their companies’ brands, competitive positioning, and bottom-line performance. The people in these positions have a direct impact on our economic vitality.”

Reinforcing the “Cool Factor”

The organizations noted that although supply chain programs in colleges and universities are increasing, many Millennials are still unaware of the opportunities that the profession offers.

“We need to inject the cool factor into this industry, which provides a rewarding career, great pay, and the ability to make a difference in people’s lives,” said Mr. Derry.

“Being a key player in the global business arena is just one area that makes supply chain jobs so satisfying. Using new technologies and managing the complexities of different cultures, regulations, and tax codes is part of it, too. Many of these jobs are also perfect for Millennials who want to advance their personal values, such as sustainability and corporate social responsibility,” he added.

New Program Spotlights Rising Stars

To call attention to these opportunities, the organizations recently launched a first-of-its-kind initiative honoring supply chain’s young “rock stars.”

Their new “30 Under 30 Rising Supply Chain Stars” Recognition Program will honor thirty professionals from the U.S. and Canada whose initiative, collaboration, innovation, and/or leadership have led to notable accomplishments. Nominees’ contributions to their companies, professional associations, and the industry at large will all be considered. All nominees must be thirty or younger as of December 31, 2014.

Each “rising star” will receive a year’s ISM membership for free. In addition, one “megawatt” professional from the group will attend ISM2015 for free along with the person who nominates him/her.

Putting the Future in the Industry’s Hands

“We’re encouraging individuals who have built rewarding supply chain careers to help ensure their industry’s continued vibrancy, and nominate a deserving candidate. We also welcome self-nominations from Millennials,” said Mr. Holst-Knudsen.

Nomination forms are available at http:/www.thomasnet.com/30under30 and the deadline is July 31st. For more information, contact Linda Rigano, Executive Director, Media Relations, ThomasNet, at 212-629-1522 or lrigano@thomasnet.com.

About ThomasNet.com®
ThomasNet.com®, part of Thomas Industrial Network Inc. is the leading platform for supplier discovery and selection of OEM, MRO and other products and services. The platform serves procurement professionals, engineers, plant and facility management and other buyers.

About ISM®
Institute for Supply Management® (ISM) is the first supply management institute in the world. ISM's mission is to enhance the value and performance of procurement and supply chain management practitioners and their organizations worldwide through education, research, standards of excellence and information dissemination.
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