The Australian economy has been relatively stable this year, although not enough to lift household consumption and inflationary pressures.
The Australian states and territories have shown uneven economic growth in the last year. Victoria saw 0.9%, with declines in the manufacturing sector to blame for the states low growth and NSW has economic growth of 1.3%.
The unemployment rate has been in steady decline, and forecast to edge lower. Despite this, wage growth remains low across the board. It is, however, anticipated to increase, but there is uncertainty as to when and how quickly.
The rise of revenue management.
There has been a new focus on revenue management and how it operates in FMCG; what role does it play? And how does it fit into organisational structures? More businesses are investing in revenue management roles to support the customer management team and overall business performance. Roles in pricing and trade optimisation are on the rise.
The key objective is to maximise investment, identify growth opportunities and establish the most profitable pricing and promotional strategies. Some businesses are even hiring candidates with a finance background into national account manager (NAM) roles and customer management roles. This is due to the increased requirement for financial acumen and capability in customer and business planning.
More talent making the shift to contracting.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that more than one million people in Australia were working as contractors. Interesting to note; while many believe Millennials are chasing the bright lights of non-9-5 roles, 55% of contracts around the country are held by people aged 45 years and over. Several of our FMCG clients are more frequently opting to take on a contractor as opposed to permanent talent. This is generally driven by a desire for flexibility with the goal to increase agility and deliver on key projects.
Demand for sales talent with e-Commerce know-how.
Demand is increasing for NAM and customer managers that are digitally savvy to manage the rise of online retailers alongside the launch of Amazon. We are noticing some moving out of corporate grocery to consumer goods companies, such as Mattel, Nike and Hanes, to gain exposure to a different customer dynamic and emerging channels.
Rise in export opportunities.
As businesses look to expand their international footprint, we are seeing a rise in export opportunities and skillsets with market development experience in demand. Knowledge of China is of interest as the dominance of this market continues. To remain competitive, it is important that talent gain exposure to offshore market development if they are evaluating senior commercial roles.
Experts in IT, Capex, marketing and corporate services in demand for category management roles.
As FMCG businesses look to develop existing supplier relationships and increase levels of supplier collaboration, candidates with experience in mature category management environments, solid strategic sourcing capability and with a high level of stakeholder engagement are the most sought after.
Jennifer Kenworthy is the Manager of the Victorian FMCG Sales & Marketing team. Get in touch with Jennifer on 03 8613 3515.
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