You see planes, trains and trucks every day. They are hauling or carrying a load somewhere. It may be people, animals or freight, but something is being moved at all times of the day and night. Getting people and things from place to place efficiently takes organization. Logistics management provides the technology and organization to get things from place to place efficiently.
Almost every industry involves transporting products. There may be supplies to be brought in or finished products to be delivered to stores and consumers. Economic growth depends on getting supplies in and products out on schedule. As supply chains and distribution channels grow, they become more complex. Companies are looking for professionals to manage their supply chains. If you like technology and problem-solving, supply chain management and logistics may be for you.
The job outlook for logisticians is excellent. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 22 percent employment growth from 2012-2022. That’s much faster than the average for all occupations.
Companies have found that making their supply chain processes more efficient and less costly increases their profitability. Logistics jobs come with many different titles. Some examples are:
- Customer Service Manager
- Inventory Control Manager
- Logistics Manager
- Logistics Services Salesperson
- Materials Manager
- Production Manager
- Purchasing Manager
- System Support Manager
- Transportation Manager
- Warehouse Operations Manager
Logistics management can be a lucrative career. The median wage in 2012 was more than $70,000 with the lowest 10 percent earning less than $45,000 according to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Logistics is a demanding job that requires focus and training. An associate degree in logistics management may be enough to qualify for some jobs, but a bachelor’s degree is more often required. Degrees in business, logistics or supply chain management are preferred.
Experience is important to move along the career path. Technology and systems change on a regular basis. Logistics careers require critical thinking and problem solving.
Certification is also available through the American Society of Transportation and Logistics or the International Society of Logistics. The certification generally requires a combination of education, experience and then passing an exam.
Entry-level jobs in logistics and supply chain management might include customer service management. Taking care of your customers is the basis of any business, but this position can also include managing inventory, planning product transportation needs or managing supplies needed. Other entry-level jobs may be distribution clerk, van driver or operation clerk.
Experience is a major factor for advancement in this career. Higher level degrees such as an MBA are also advantageous. Advanced roles may include industry analyst, project manager, logistics manager, operation director or transportation director. Advanced jobs may even involve global companies and customers.
Logistics is a growing industry. The job outlook is excellent and wages are strong. A degree in logistics management can open the door to an entry-level job. Getting that experience can lead up an exciting career path.