This guest post comes from Yosra Musa, an inventory analyst and emerging Supply Chain professional. She runs Small Seed Consulting.
“What is supply chain management?” is a question I’ve become deeply familiar with since first pursuing my post-graduate certificate in SCM & Global Logistics several years ago.
When I think about how common it is for me to hear this question from people in my age cohort, it becomes more and more apparent that our industry needs some major rebranding.
Despite the huge opportunities available for young folk in the supply chain management sector, so many people are unfamiliar with the supply chain industry, what exactly supply chain professionals really do and why they should consider working in logistics and supply chain management.
So I’ve come up with 3 short and sweet reasons why all Millennials (regardless of their educational background) should consider landing a job in the supply chain management field.
1) Developing Your Soft and Hard Skills
We’ve all heard that the average person will hold 7 different jobs in their lifetime. Turns out researchers predict this will likely double in the future with the average person holding 12-15 jobs.
With that in mind, wouldn’t it be great to start off that trajectory with a job that will provide you will transferrable skills?
The very nature of supply chain management is rooted in collaboration and interdisciplinarity. Whether you start off as a purchasing clerk, logistics coordinator or demand planner it is highly probable your role will require you to work closely with vendors, 3PLs, drivers, sales staff, accounting personnel, etc. It is through these interactions that you’ll be able to see the “bigger picture” of the company and eventually be able to draw upper echelon business conclusions.
In addition to the multifaceted business challenges you’ll tackle, you’ll get exposure to hard skills like working with an ERP system, utilizing Microsoft Excel/Access extensively, forecasting sales and more!
These hard skills are what will compliment the soft skills (like communication) on your resume and make you stand out to future employers.
2) Career Diversification
Every industry needs supply chain professionals. What does this mean for SCM professionals? They have the opportunity to take their skills and apply it to radically different fields. You could be a supply chain analyst for a small-sized grocery chain, top beauty brand, oil giant or your favourite airlines. Again, the skills that SCM and logistics professionals have are needed in every industry. This allows you to really dabble in different markets, if you choose to do so. It also provides you with much more career security than other industries.
3) The SCM Industry Needs You!
I know what you’re thinking- hold on, I thought this article was about what SCM could do for me.
But hear me out… companies are facing big supply chain issues. There’s no organization that has a perfectly optimized supply chain. There’s always more room for efficiency and cost savings. Compound this with the current industry talent-shortage and you shouldn’t be surprised when you jump into an entry-level SCM job and have meaty problems to dig into. It will no doubt be challenging but ultimately, it’s what will push you ahead of the pack.