Careers in Logistics and Supply Chain Management
Workers in the logistics and supply chain management field make sure that goods and services get into the hands of consumers. The logistics industry is an important driver of economic growth and development.
All types of businesses, big and small, need logistics managers to help with inventory and accounts receivable. Small business may have one person in charge of these duties, while large corporations have entire logistics and supple chain departments.
Most people start down a career path in this field by working in an entry-level position and work their way up to jobs with more responsibilities and a higher salary. There are many different job titles in the logistics industry. Below are just a few:
- Customer Service Manager
- International Logistics Manager
- Inventory Control Manager
- Logistics Engineer
- Logistics Manager
- Logistics Services Salesperson
- Logistics Software Manager
- Materials Manager
- Production Manager
- Purchasing Manager
- Supply Chain Manager
- Systems Support Manager
- Transportation Manager
- Vendor Managed Inventory Coordinator
- Warehouse Operations Manager
Entry-Level Logistics and Supply Chain Management Jobs
One of the most common entry-level positions in this field is customer service management. Customer services is an important part of logistics and supply chain management on an individual level, since listening to and helping your consumers is the backbone of any business. You can also work managing product inventory for a business, planning and overseeing product transportation needs, and managing supplies needed for manufacturing.
You are not limited to customer service management, however. You can also find entry-level employment working as a distribution clerk, van driver, operation clerk, and many other jobs that provide a stepping stone to more advanced positions.
Advanced Logistics and Supply Chain Management Jobs
As you gain experience in logistics and supply chain management, you’ll be able to take on advanced roles in this field. You could work as an industry analyst, project manager, global logistics manager, operations director, transportation director, or international logistics manager, just to name a few of the positions open in this field. Many companies also hire vice presidents of logistics, which is a top-level position in this field that oversees all aspects of logistics and supply chain management and usually comes attached to a six-figure salary.
If you’re interested in working abroad or with an international customer base, advanced jobs in logistics often provide such opportunities. Many logistics companies work with foreign distributors to conduct business. There’s also the option to work as a consultant. As a consultant, you can work with a variety of different companies, both nationally and abroad, offering tips and strategies on how to streamline processes. After learning the business, working as a consultant might be an option with considering if you prefer a more flexible schedule and the opportunity to work with a variety of clients and businesses.
Your Logistics Education
Working in the logistics field – at least, advancing beyond a very low-level customer service position – requires at least an associate’s degree, with most requiring a bachelor’s degree. Many employers actually prefer a master’s degree or professional degree in this field as well. Your classes in logistics and supply chain management will cover topics such as ethics, administration, finances, organization, marketing, international business, statistics, and conflict resolution.
Programs often offer internship opportunities, which is a great way to get first-hand experience in the field. You can find programs that just cover logistics and supply chain management, or you can earn a degree in business with a concentration in logistics and supply chain management. Both are beneficial to students interested in working in this field.
Have you considered an online program? Many schools now offer online logistics degree programs at all education levels. Distance education allows you to schedule your classes around work and other commitments. If you think you might be a good candidate for online learning, check out our list of accredited degree programs. We link students to a variety of different programs in logistics management, supply chain management, and many others.
List of Online Logistics Degrees
Ashford University — The MA and BA in Supply Chain Management from Ashford University teach students how to effectively produce, direct, and utilize resources vital to a successful organization. The program is taught by professors with real world experience. The college's curriculum will challenge your understanding of the relevance and applicability of logistics and supply chain methodologies. Ashford is accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission, 985 Atlantic Avenue, Ste 100, Alameda, CA 94501, 5107489001, www.wascsenior.org.
Kaplan University — The BSBA in Procurement from Kaplan University explores information systems, operations, and material acquisition, and supply chains as they related to logistics management. Classes cover various management techniques as well as practical applications like understanding and examining financial statements. Kaplan is an online school with several test-prep centers and campuses across the country.
Colorado Technical University — The Colorado Technical University BSBA - Logistics & Supply Chain Management provides students with a specialized course of study on advanced tenants of logistics and supply chain management. Professors in this program have both research and real world experience in the field, and are able to provide their experience and knowledge to students.
Capella University — Capella University's offers two programs in international logistics: an MBA and a DBA in Global Operations and Supply Chain Management. These programs prepare students for leadership roles on an international scope in roles such as manufacturing manager, distribution manager, materials manager, logistics manager, operations manager or supply chain manager. Work environments include government, independent contracting, military, and the private sector.
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