Supply chain management degree programs are ideal for people interested in obtaining supply chain management certification for enhancing their careers in business, government, nonprofit, or military settings.
What is supply chain management? It is the acquisition, storage and movement of inventory, raw materials plus finished goods. Proper management of suppliers is essential for the overall success of any business. The way a company sources and distributes its inventory and raw materials always has an impact on its bottom-line. This is why most companies are now hiring people who have acquired a degree in supply chain management.
This job requires people who can work with local as well as foreign markets so as to produce the best results. Firms are constantly looking for highly trained and qualified staff to carry out the supply functions. Those who are qualified will therefore discover that their career opportunities are limitless. These graduates are able to compete quite competitively for the lucrative jobs available in the market and the sky is the limit for such professionals.
Several schools offer training in supply chain management - sometimes as a separate degree, often as part of another degree, and sometimes as a single supply chain management course. Here are a few selected ones together with related degrees (others can be found using the search boxes on this page):
Those who undertake this degree are later employed by firms to provide the appropriate skills and knowledge in the supplies department. During the training, certain skills are imparted including written and verbal communication skills, aptitude for technology, analytical skills, team work and professionalism. This enables the graduates to deal with policy making, product development, planning and formulate management strategies.
This is a wide course and covers various modules. They include strategic alliances, negotiations, price/cost analysis, logistics, supply chain optimization, and legal aspects of supply chains. Inventory, internet technology, economics and contract management are also covered. Other courses may include computer systems, marketing, contract analysis and finance. This gives the graduate a strong background in business and finance.
Due to the continuous growth and expansion of businesses those who have attained a relevant degree will always be in great demand. Those who complete this course successfully have a wide range of jobs in supply chain management to choose from including: contract negotiator, purchasing manager, inventory manager or materials manager. One can also become a supplier relations specialist, transportation manager, commodity manager or operations manager among other posts. Such jobs focus on e-commerce, benchmarking, technology, recycling, customer relations and warehousing.
The supply chain management careers outlook is bright. This is a field that is growing and will continue to grow as long as new businesses continue to be opened and as long as companies continue to grow, merge and expand. Each of these businesses requires highly qualified staff to handle materials and supplies.
This staff also has to meet with business executives to make essential contract decisions and also the project the company's future needs. They also have to negotiate so as to get materials of highest quality at reasonable prices. So, this is a growing field that is here to stay and those who undertake this course have a bright career ahead. The prospects of working both locally and internationally are also very high.
The supply chain management salary may vary from one company to the other. The salary may also depend on experience, company size, the industry, job responsibilities, operating budget and business climate. Purchasing agents may earn about $58,000 annually on the average. Purchasing managers could earn about $95,000 with the highest wage reaching about $150,000 annually. It is therefore clear that this is a lucrative field.
Browse the schools below to find a suitable school and program. Request information from several schools and compare the admission requirements and course content before you choose a program.
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Wanjira Kinuthia, Georgia State University
Stewart Marshall, The University of the West Indies
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