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GSCW chat recap: ProLogistix’s Devine on warehouse labor issues

‘The logistics industry, specifically e-commerce, is perfect for shorter segments of work, so I think we’re going to see a huge influx of gig-type workers in fulfillment centers’

FreightWaves Reporter Mark Solomon discusses warehouse labor with Brian Devine, senior vice president at ProLogistix. (Photo: FreightWaves)

This fireside chat recap is from Day 2 of FreightWaves’ Global Supply Chain Week. Day 2 focuses on the military, aerospace and manufacturing.

FIRESIDE CHAT TOPIC: Is there enough warehouse labor to go around?

DETAILS: E-commerce fulfillment warehouses have never been in more demand. But is there enough labor to adequately staff these facilities? What will it cost retailers and manufacturers to ensure that orders get out the door as fast as possible?

SPEAKER: Brian Devine, senior vice president at ProLogistix

BIO: Devine is senior vice president at ProLogistix, one of the largest providers of logistics talent in the U.S. He also leads ResourceMFG, the manufacturing division of EmployBridge. Combined, the two operations employ over 50,000 associates across the country.


“2020 was absolutely unprecedented; all of us are now buying stuff online. The e-commerce portion of business has just shot through the roof, accounting for about 21% of sales now. We’re all ordering stuff online, and there’s a very limited amount of labor out there.”

“Robotics and automation will play a very large part in warehousing, fulfillment and distribution centers in the future. I’m often asked if it will eliminate the need for people in warehouses, and I really don’t see that as the case. Companies will use robotics and automation to significantly enhance the productivity of the workers that are already in the warehouse.”

“Jobs will have to pay more and more to attract more people into them that may not have automatically thought about logistics and warehousing as a career. The way to attract workers into that sector of the logistics industry is very, very competitive wages.”

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Noi Mahoney

Noi Mahoney is a Texas-based journalist who covers cross-border trade, logistics and supply chains for FreightWaves. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English in 1998. Mahoney has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working for newspapers in Florida, Maryland and Texas. Contact [email protected]