How to Become a Supply Chain Manager

Supply Chain Managers are professionals who are responsible for overseeing the supplying and movement of a variety of goods from the point of manufacturing to the delivery.

Their goal is to get items into the hands of consumers or users.

These professionals can work in a variety of industries including the military or for commercial companies.

Individuals who would like to become a Supply Chain Manager will need to have some personal characteristics, experience in this field and an educational background in order to succeed in this profession.

Education Requirements to Become a Supply Chain Manager

Individuals who want to become a Supply Chain Manager will need to secure a postsecondary degree, gain experience in the field and seek certification in order to enter this profession.

Although not required, seeking certification is highly encouraged because it can distinguish individuals from other applicants.

Qualities that employers look for when hiring individuals include the following: communication skills, problem solving, organizational and critical thinking skills.

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These qualities will help Supply Chain Managers create logistical plans to move inventory, create plans that are low cost and efficient and resolve any delivery issues that may arise.

Individuals who want to become a Supply Chain Manager need a minimum of an Associate’s degree; however, it is highly encouraged to seek a bachelor’s in order to stay competitive in this profession.

Securing a bachelor’s degree is also highly recommended because of the impact technology has had in this field; technology has made logistics more complicated and complex.

When beginning their college degree, individuals who want to become a Supply Chain Manager need to focus on an area that will help them succeed in this profession.

Typical programs and choice of studies include: Business, Process Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Supply Chain Management or a closely related feild.

Students will take the following classes under a typical program:

  • Database Management
  • Operations
  • Software and technologies including radio-frequency identification (RFID)

Individuals must also seek certification in order to stay competitive in the field.

Individuals must first complete an educational track, gain experience in the field and pass the certification exam.

Organizations that provide the certification include American Society of Transportation and Logistics ASTL or the International Society of Logistics

Visit their websites for more information on the steps needed to seek certification.

Supply Chain Manager Job Description

Supply Chain Managers are responsible for overseeing the process that transfers a product from a supplier to user or consumer.

This includes managing the entire life cycle from the beginning to when a product is available to consumers.

The following includes the typical life cycle of a product:

  • Purchasing a product
  • Acquiring a product
  • Inventory
  • Distribution
  • Transportation
  • Allocation
  • Delivery
  • Warehousing

Supply Chain Managers will start the life cycle of a product by coordinating and analyzing the system they will use to move a product.

They will then order the allocation of a variety of goods including: materials, supplies and finished products.

After a delivery, they will analyze any successes or look for improvements that will help with efficiency and reducing costs.

They will also have working relationships with their customers and suppliers to ensure that all products have been delivered on time.

Supply Chain Manager Salary and Career Path

According to reports from 2012, supply management professionals, including Supply Chain Managers, earn a median wage of $72,780 per year.

Exact wages will depend on the industry an individual works in.

For example, individuals working for the federal government supplying military supplies from one point of contact to another will earn a median annual wage of $78,000; individuals who work for the manufacturing industry can expect a median annual wage of approximately $71,940.

The job outlook for Logisticians which also includes Supply Chain Managers is expected to grow at a faster than average rate of 22 percent through the year 2022.

This growth is being attributed to the globalization and the transportation of goods from different areas of the world.

This profession is extremely important when dealing with several types of goods and services.

Supply Chain Managers will become more important because of the fast growth of products being sent across the globe.

A Supply Chain Manager is vital in preparing and managing the logistics for goods moving from one part of the world to another.

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