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Exclusive FMCG jobs market update – October

job searchOverall there has been a positive lift in the market as we enter the final quarter of the year, largely due to an influx of specialist roles within the FMCG/consumer space.

There has been greater stability this year as the unemployment rate has remained steady at 5.7 per cent, solid jobs growth has been recorded and GDP from manufacturing in Australia has increased.

1. Senior marketing jobs are hot right now. After several years of downsizing marketing teams within the FMCG space we have noticed increased activity in the last month, particularly senior, director level appointments. Some of this activity is attributed to emerging businesses who have a high growth trajectory and require strong marketing capability.  There have also been a number of large scale restructures prompting new roles to be created.

2. High demand for category and shopper skills. There have been greater requirements in less traditional grocery businesses, such as general merchandise. These businesses are raising the bar by seeking talent with more sophisticated category management and shopper insights skillsets – and they are winning!

3. Procurement – category management roles on the rise. We are seeing huge demand for indirect category managers as organisations look to tighten up spend and rationalise suppliers.

4. Site managers sitting tight. We have noticed a decline in the number of site management roles as there is less movement in this space. The threat of offshoring manufacturing still looms, so there is some apprehension when it comes to changing roles.

5. A focus on quality. There is a rise in the number of quality assurance and continuous improvement roles due to the high risk within the FMCG industry and lingering high profile cases of sub-standard products. Top talent in this space is in high demand within leading FMCG businesses, pushing salaries up.

6. Dairy drives uncertainty. Despite relative stability, the dairy industry is without doubt the most turbulent industry within the FMCG space. There continues to be restructures and consolidation with the knowledge of tough times ahead. New roles are being created and the fight for talent is rife, particularly given the challenges associated with commodity pricing. Skillsets in demand are those that manage costs effectively and create efficiencies. The full effect of this turbulence, particularly in the Victorian job market, is yet to be recognised.

John Whitehead is Associate Director, Supply Chain & Engineering for Six Degrees Executive, a specialist recruitment consultancy providing talent solutions within the FMCG space.

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