The Logistics of a Career in Logistics

Written by Peter Jones

Whether you are interested in a career in logistics, or you, like most of us, have no idea what that entails, then read on. Logistics jobs, particularly those in supply chain management, or SCM, work with business or organizational supply—developing and maintaining relationships, making sure materials get where they are going safely and on schedule, cost minimizing, and customer relations.

Sound good? Here are 7 things you probably should know.

These jobs are growing

Jobs in logistics are growing at more than twice the average job growth rate. And it’s not the kind of job most grads flock to first. If you don’t mind working behind the scenes, there could be a bright and stable career out there for you, with less competition.

Demand is much higher than need

Because these jobs fly under the radar, there is actually a shortage of qualified candidates for the more than one million jobs out there. If you’re qualified, or can become so, this is a guaranteed leg up into a good career.

You need education

Of course, you can’t just walk into a logistics job. You will need some level of education. Approximately 70% of logistics employers advertising jobs last year strongly preferred a bachelor’s degree. An associate degree might get your foot in the door, but to be really competitive, you should go for the gold. Plus, it will show your motivation and tenacity—both qualities that are extremely highly valued in a field that requires nuance and comfort negotiating complexity.

Don’t just assume you’ll have an office

Logisticians have an enormous amount of information and tasks to manage, so you’ll want to be sure to ask potential employers where you’ll be spending the bulk of your work day—whether at a factory setting, a delivery or pick-up center, or a traditional office. As these settings vary from job to job, it’s best not to assume.

The pressure is high

Just because it’s under the radar, doesn’t mean the stakes aren’t high. So many parts of the SCM operation will depend on you. And since most kerfluffles happen on the logistics side, it’s up to you to keep things running smoothly under fire.

You need to see the forest

Simply knowing about your job won’t be enough. A good logistician will have comprehensive knowledge of the workings of the whole SCM system. This will help you keep things running smoothly.

It’s highly ranked

According to Us News & World Report, Logistics jobs are 26th on their list of best jobs overall, and also 6th on their “Best Business Jobs” list. Expect good pay and prospects, and manageable stress.

Hopefully it all seems a little less complicated to you now. If this sounds good for you and you can handle a bit of pressure, then consider getting yourself a degree in SCM management. Or just a good BA and an entry-level in-demand job—you’ll be well on your way to a solid career in Logistics.


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About the author

Peter Jones

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