Job Satisfaction Remains High for Logistics & Supply Chain Employees
It has been a tough year for supply chain and logistics professionals who have been dealing with issues such as supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, inflation, and other challenges. In fact, it has been a tough few years for the industry, after facing never-ending disruptions brought about by changes in the economy. Nevertheless, the supply chain and logistics industry pushes on, and while these obstacles have no doubt challenged workers in the industry, they remain largely satisfied with their careers. In a study conducted by Clear Seas Research along with Quality Magazine among professionals involved with quality operations, more than three quarters of the respondents reported that they were satisfied with their jobs overall, and a majority would recommend quality manufacturing as a career. The Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM) had similar findings in their 2022 Supply Chain Salary and Career Report; supply chain professionals reported high career satisfaction despite ongoing turmoil in the industry. There are many factors that contribute to this strong satisfaction rate, such as high salaries and good benefits, room for advancement, diversity of work, opportunities to use emerging technologies and more.
Respondents of both surveys reported high salaries, with most receiving pay increases and bonuses over the last year. ASCM’s survey found that 79% of supply chain professionals received a pay increase over the last year, averaging a 9% increase, with overall total compensation increasing by an average of 12%. With layoffs and decreased company budgets being a major problem as of late, it is encouraging to see that salaries for supply chain professionals continued to rise, which undoubtedly influences career satisfaction. The average salary of supply chain professionals that responded to ASCM’s survey was reported to be $96,000, with 71% of respondents earning a good amount above their base pay in the form of bonuses and additional compensation such as profit sharing, incentive pay and overtime pay. Tenure and job title influenced salary raises, as expected, with Supply Chain Directors reporting the highest salaries. Since pay is typically a top factor in career satisfaction in general, it makes sense that people in this lucrative industry are generally satisfied with their career and would recommend it to others.
Along with high pay, other hugely important factors in career satisfaction are the benefits and flexibility that are offered to employees. Now more than ever, flexibility is vital to attracting and retaining quality employees. ASCM’s survey showed that two-thirds of supply chain professionals now work in a hybrid or permanent work-from-home setting, showing that they don’t necessarily need to be in-office in order to be effective at their jobs. Remote and hybrid work settings have skyrocketed over the last several years, becoming commonplace during the Covid-19 pandemic, and many companies don’t plan on going back to a traditional setting. Companies who are able to make certain positions hybrid or fully remote may see an increase in overall productivity and career satisfaction. ASCM’s survey also showed that 48% of respondents receive four weeks or more of paid time off per year, which is higher than a lot of professions, and 20% of respondents said that their company increased the number of paid holidays over the last year. These perks and benefits can go a long way in not only attracting employees, but also retaining them by keeping their career satisfaction high.
According to Quality Magazine and Clear Seas Research’s study, 59% of respondents said that room for advancement was the most important factor driving job satisfaction. The logistics and supply chain industry is vast, with new opportunities becoming available all of the time. It is one of the best industries in terms of room for growth, so for those employees who are looking to advance in their career, it can offer great opportunities and deep fulfillment. Logistics and supply chain operations are constantly evolving, with new technologies emerging frequently which can help to improve efficiency and lessen the physical burden on workers. For a lot of employees in the industry, this new technology is exciting to learn and is a major factor in why they choose to stay in their careers. It provides diversity in their day-to-day tasks and prevents them from becoming stagnant or growing tired of their roles. Because the industry is so rapidly evolving, training is also a key factor for employees looking to grow in their field. 96% of respondents from Quality Magazine’s study reported having completed some type of job-related training in the past year. Given that professional development correlates with higher pay, as shown in ASCM’s study when looking at salary by job title and tenure, it will continue to be a driving factor in which roles logistics professionals choose to accept and stay in.
It has been a tumultuous couple of years for the logistics and supply chain industry, with seemingly never ending challenges for workers to take on, and those challenges are still very much a burden. However, logistics and supply chain professionals continue to report high job satisfaction overall, with a majority indicating that they would recommend their career to others. Even amid what experts dubbed “The Great Resignation” with people leaving their jobs in alarmingly high numbers, this industry was not nearly as affected as others. There are many factors that all work together that can explain this, such as supply chain employees reporting in general that their workplaces have a good culture and work-life balance, the fact that logistics professionals earn high salaries and receive comprehensive benefits, there is great room for growth in the industry overall, and there are opportunities to learn and utilize up-and-coming technologies in the workplace. There may be a lot of uncertainty and pressure to keep up with increased demand, but despite all of these things, it is clear that a career in the logistics and supply chain can be extremely rewarding and fulfilling.