Material Handling Business Trends

The following list of trends, in no specific ranking of importance, address the shifting state of the Material Handling industry, as defined by a group of your peers, the MHEDA Executive Committee.

We encourage you to discuss these topics with your own leadership team and look to MHEDA for resources to help your organization manage in the months ahead.

If you have any questions or comments about this process or what is listed below, please contact the MHEDA office.

2022 Material Handling Business Trends

1Extended lead times have created challenges in compensation practices and cash flow. Members should closely track this impact and develop policies to address potential complications.

2Companies should be steadfast in their commitment to creating and maintaining a healthy workplace culture and need to dedicate resources to sustain an exceptional employee experience. Culture is more important today than ever.

3Lessons have been learned from establishing a remote and hybrid workforce. Companies need to understand the impact and be prepared for future evolution.

4Addressing the shortage of skilled labor requires creative recruitment and retention strategies including monetary incentives for referrals, signing bonuses and highly competitive wages.

5Members should be educated on the depth and breadth of diversity initiatives and how it can help promote career path awareness with a focus on equal opportunities.

6Increased government intervention is causing disruption related to the competitiveness of the marketplace. Members should be aware of all types of legislation that affects them on a local and federal level.

7Safety protocols are of paramount importance and employees need to be regularly trained on implementing and following safety measures.

8Members must be vigilant in protecting against cyber security attacks, regularly analyze exposure and train employees to be attentive of risks. There can be added exposure exacerbated by a remote work environment. It’s critically important to have digital expertise in the company.

9Business interruption and disaster scenario planning should be included and documented within a company’s strategic planning process.

10Business valuation and succession planning has taken on more importance as owners consider retirement and consolidation continues.

11Inflation rates and prices are increasing, partially based on supply and demand. Members should monitor the economic environment and be prepared to protect against unforeseen increasing costs.

12Labor shortages, e-commerce, warehouse efficiencies and other trends are creating heightened customer demands for automation and this will only continue to increase. Members need to be well prepared to embrace these automation opportunities.

13Companies need to monitor the effects of Covid including customer requirements, workforce policies and possible resurgence of variants.

14E-commerce and online purchasing have accelerated and can result in new, competitive forces. Members should be forward thinking as to how their organization will evolve and provide service/value to the end user.

15The integration of data both internal and external, i.e. business systems, WMS and telematics, is critically important to strengthen the member organization and satisfy customer demands.


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