High staff turnovers, absenteeism and an increasingly competitive job market are just some of the challenges facing auto logistics companies in Mexico, WW Solutions’ VP of Mexico operations has said.

Roberto Zavala made the comments during his presentation on ‘Optimising Talent’ at the Automotive Logistics Mexico Conference in January in Mexico City.

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Zavala explained that high rates of attrition and absenteeism among the workforce, as well as an increasingly competitive job market in Mexico, made it extremely difficult to attract and retain talent.

“In Mexico, labour market issues can mean longer hours for those working, as well as lost efficiencies when trained employees leave the business,” Zavala said. “The extra time and training needed to get new employees up to speed creates costs for OEMs and logistics providers alike.”

Internal and external drivers may put additional pressure on the market, including new regulations that are part of the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement, or USMCA, the new free trade agreement set to replace NAFTA. USMCA could impact Mexico’s competitive advantage versus other car-producing nations, delegates at the conference heard.

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There’s no doubt that recruitment and retention of staff will remain a critical issue. “I’ve been with WW Solutions for 11 years. One of my former bosses used to say: ‘We’re all in sales’. I think today that we might also say: ‘We’re all in recruiting’.”

Other themes at this year’s conference included Mexico’s position as a manufacturing hub and leading exporter, supply chain strategies for the Mexican market, and the development of electric vehicles.

Vehicle manufacturers, major suppliers, logistics service providers and infrastructure operators were given an insight into how to remain competitive during challenging times and the best ways of successfully managing the risks and opportunities ahead.