DALLAS - October 2, 2018 - The rapid growth of e-commerce is forecast to create demand for another 452,000 warehouse and distribution workers in the U.S. this year and next, signaling an acceleration of job growth in the already labor-strapped industry, according to a new report from CBRE.
Retailers, delivery companies and third-party logistics firms can react to the labor crunch in any or all of three ways, according to CBRE: recruiting more workers from other industries; investing in automation to enhance labor efficiency; and expanding into markets with ready and available workforces.
Analysis by CBRE Research and CBRE's Labor Analytics Group of federal employment data identified multiple U.S. markets that offer advantageous combinations of availability, quality and cost of labor for warehouses and distribution.
With a very high labor supply and lower than average labor cost, the Industrial & Logistics labor market in Dallas-Fort Worth is in the sweet spot from a competitive advantage and is primed to attract further I&L development. DFW boasted the largest absolute gains in transportation and warehousing employment from 2013-2017, with 44,910 jobs added, representing 29.8 percent growth.
Dallas-Fort Worth is one of the nation's three largest I&L labor markets, along with L.A./Orange County and Chicago, which together account for 12 percent of the U.S. transportation and warehousing labor supply.
DFW is also the fourth most affordable I&L market from a labor standpoint among the 37 logistics hubs included in the CBRE analysis. Wages for transportation & warehousing jobs in DFW average around $12.90/hour, below the national median hourly wage of $13.75/hour.
"Clients are becoming increasingly focused on the availability, cost and sustainability of labor as a part of any site selection project," said Travis Sapaugh, Senior Vice President, CBRE in Dallas. "As the unemployment rate continues to decline, competition for workers is becoming more and more fierce. An extra dollar per hour in a company's wage rate for a job or a given set of jobs can affect the attraction and retention of a workforce and has real and significant cost impacts to the overall supply chain."
"Site selection for today's warehouse users and developers is a complex exercise of weighing trade-offs including speed to customer, transportation costs, location incentives, real-estate economics and labor," said Adam Mullen, Americas Leader for CBRE's Industrial & Logistics business. "The most intelligent site selection efforts never lose sight of the fact that labor accounts for more than 20 percent of total supply chain cost, and up to 75 percent in final-touch distribution. Its importance can't be overstated."
Said Kristin Sexton, Senior Managing Director of CBRE Labor Analytics, "Employers often face significant challenges in assessing a given labor market and how its many facets might apply or not to their companies' needs. But one thing is certain: Labor is a critical resource for most modern employers, especially those in the rapidly expanding and evolving field of distribution and warehousing. Effectively operating in this industry will require smart analysis of labor sources for many years to come."
About CBRE Group, Inc.
CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE: CBRE), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Los Angeles, is the world's largest commercial real estate services and investment firm (based on 2017 revenue). The company has more than 80,000 employees (excluding affiliates), and serves real estate investors and occupiers through approximately 450 offices (excluding affiliates) worldwide. CBRE offers a broad range of integrated services, including facilities, transaction and project management; property management; investment management; appraisal and valuation; property leasing; strategic consulting; property sales; mortgage services and development services. Please visit our website at www.cbre.com.