AWESOME/Gartner Research

AWESOME and Gartner study women’s supply chain leadership

scmr_sourceAWESOME and Gartner, the world’s leading research and advisory company, are collaborating on research that will shed light on and track progress toward the advancement of women in supply chain leadership roles. Women continue to be underrepresented at senior levels, even though companies are competing for the best supply talent and utilizing women’s talents is increasingly a source of competitive advantage.

In 2016, AWESOME and Gartner set out to establish a baseline with retail and manufacturing companies. In 2017, the goal of the survey was to assess progress, as well as to collect key data on goals and initiatives, some of which are yielding benefits, some not.

2018 Study

AWESOME and Gartner launched the 3rd annual survey which tracks women’s progress.

The new AWESOME/Gartner 2018 Women in Supply Chain survey collects and analyzes responses from supply chain leaders in manufacturing, retail, and other companies managing complex supply chains. This year’s survey was expanded to include companies that provide logistics services integral to supply chain, such as third-party transportation and logistics, consulting, and technology providers.

Dana Stiffler
Research VP, Gartner

The survey will give us valuable insights to help make a difference for women’s leadership in supply chain. Results and interpretation of the 2018 research will be presented at the 2018 Symposium by Dana Stiffler, Research VP, Gartner.

2017 Study

The second AWESOME/Gartner survey was launched in February 2017 to assess progress made in the past year and also identify barriers or enablers contributing to that progress. Participants in the study were supply chain leaders in manufacturing, retail, or other companies managing complex supply chains.

Results of this survey were reported by Dana Stiffler, Research VP, Gartner, at the 2017 AWESOME Symposium, May 3-5 in Chicago.

Key findings include:

    • Among different kinds of companies, consumer goods continues to lead in its progression of women leaders, while the industrial sector has edged up slightly.
    • Organizations are embracing recruiting and broader pipeline planning – practices that lead to more substantive results than employee workgroups and leadership training.
    • Executive focus and action, recruiting policy changes, and high visibility of senior female leaders are the primary reasons companies make progress.

Download pdf of report

2016 Study

The first AWESOME/Gartner survey was conducted in 2016 to determine the representation of women leaders in those leadership roles. The research also set out to highlight specific activities companies are engaged in to better attract, develop, retain and advance women in supply chain organizations.

According to Dr. Nancy Nix, AWESOME Executive Director, “One of the most surprising findings is that although there is a general perception that women are gaining higher levels of leadership in supply chain, the survey found that actual progress is much slower than that perception would suggest.”

“This study gives a foundation to work from so we can measure actual progress going forward,” she added.

Results were released at the AWESOME Symposium in May 2016 and the report can be downloaded here. The research also was described in an article in Supply Chain Management Review written by Dr. Nancy Nix, AWESOME Executive Director, and Dana Stiffler, Research Vice President at Gartner Research.


Download report pdf

Download article pdf

As a follow-up, one-on-one interviews were conducted with some of the original respondents to further explore their experiences and their insights into effective company strategies to advance women.

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