By Michael Koploy
Here’s some good news for the supply chain industry: according to a study from Wanted Analytics, online job postings are up 24 percent for supply chain positions, totaling 49,000 in the past 90 days. But which jobs are in high-demand? Here are the five hottest jobs in logistics and the supply chain, and the skills and backgrounds necessary for success.
- 3PL Account Manager - As more businesses look to outsource their logistics needs, the staff of many third-party logistics firms (3PLs) will continue to expand. These professionals are tasked with acquiring new business and communicating with clients. A background in supply chain management isn’t necessary, but prior experience with account/project management, finance, accounting, or customer service--and a working knowledge of supply chain operations--is ideal.
- Demand Planner - These individuals are tasked with matching forecasts and projections with inventory production. Experience using enterprise resourcing planning (ERP) applications such as Infor, Sage and SAP is useful, as well as an academic background in statistics, engineering, finance or operations. Many professionals also have advanced certifications, such as APICS’ Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) degree. Training as a Six Sigma Black Belt is also common.
- Distribution Center (DC) Supervisor - The DC supervisor is tasked with facilitating transportation of inventory throughout the warehouse, as well as managing the team of warehouse workers. Ensuring this process is smooth and that inventory is easily accessible is essential to an efficient logistics process. Advanced certifications aren’t necessary for success, but many individuals go on from these positions to executive-level positions, as these candidates are commonly sourced as bright-young professionals with experience “in the trenches.”
- Procurement Manager - These professionals are tasked with ensuring that a company’s sourcing activities are procuring inventory that is not only high quality, but (relatively) low in cost. These individuals often require both an analytical rigor as well as the ability to communicate and influence individuals both inside and outside of the organization. Certification in spend management is common in this role, with common certifications being the ISM’s Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM), Next Level Purchasing’s Senior Professional in Supply Management, or certification through the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS).
- Supply Chain Consultant - Many students straight out of MBA programs or large universities that focused on operations, finance, accounting, or engineering find a home with large supply chain consulting firms. The benefit for these individuals--hard work young in one’s career, but experience working with leaders of some of the world’s most interesting and complex supply chains. Many take this experience to go on and open their own firms, or obtain executive-positionsn within the supply chain itself.
Michael Koploy is an ERP Analyst and blog manager for Warehouse Management Systems Guide.