Campbell Soup’s plan to train 200 supply chain leaders begins with software

by Supply Chain Drive Logo

Dive Brief

  • Campbell Soup will train more than 200 employees this year with CorpU, a leadership development and workforce analytics platform that connects users with supply chain experts at top-tier universities.
  • “There are so many roles within the supply chain, and we wanted individuals to think and act differently based on a deeper understanding of other functions and the implications of their decisions,” Daniela Vonghia, vice president of business solutions at Campbell told Supply Chain Dive in an e-mail.
  • The training is tailored to the company, CorpU says. In Campbell’s case, professors at Penn State created the content in the training, “then facilitated structured dialogue with participants about how each practice can be applied to internal projects,” Sue Todd, chief strategy officer at CorpU told Supply Chain Dive.

Dive Insight

Monday’s news that Campbell would implement this program across the company follows a smaller partnership with the company, which began in early 2017.

As the U.S. faces a skill shortage, companies are actively looking for ways to spot, develop and retain talent. The workforce gap runs deep. For every candidate applying to a supply chain job, there are six available, the University of San Diego’s Mary Long said in keynote speech at CSCMP Edge 2017.

Education — at the trade schoolcompany and university level — is considered one of the most promising long-term solutions to the industry’s workforce shortage.

“Most supply chain leaders understand the need to be agile,” said Vonghia. “Campbell believes that one of the best ways to create agility is through cross-functional collaboration, which breaks down silos within the organization to help teams better anticipate and solve problems.”

She adds the company expects CorpU to help in that goal, and also identify additional opportunities for workforce development.

For example, Todd and Vonghia said they used the platform to host an “idea tournament,” wherein the company could crowdsource new approaches for supply chain innovation. In the end, the participants identified 78 ideas or opportunities, and are now implementing them.

Hosting such an event on the platform allowed the company not just to break silos within a facility, but also engage people from different locations, roles and generations.

In addition, CorpU says its real-time data on employee learning can help Campbell identify “network champions” and “network disruptors,” that can facilitate or damage collaboration within the company, among other insights. Gaining visibility into this employee data, Todd said, can help executives reach out to people who will more effectively communicate the company strategy to their peers.