Posted September 25, 2023

Supply Chain Jobs: Always Hot!

Supply Chain Jobs: Always Hot!
By Gigi Tino

Logistics has always been crucial to the functioning of virtually every other industry. It serves as the backbone of the global economy by ensuring the efficient movement of goods and services from manufacturers and producers to consumers. The COVID-19 pandemic was a pivotal event that highlighted the importance of robust and efficient supply chains, leading to increased interest in supply chain management and logistics careers. The supply chain industry has such a strong national and global impact that it creates a market for highly valued and sought-after talent. Supply chain professionals are frequently in high demand due to the essential role they play in ensuring the efficient flow of goods and services. Job growth is an incredibly important factor to consider when exploring career paths, and the growth rates in supply chain jobs are extremely promising for prospective job seekers!

According to a study from Grand View Research, the global supply chain management market size was valued at USD 21,129.2 million in 2022. Even better, the market is predicted to rise at a compound annual growth rate, or CAGR, of 11.1% from 2023 to 2030. For the North American market, the CAGR for 2023 to 2030 is predicted to be 9.1%. The industry maintains a positive growth outlook even amidst current economic challenges, making it a great environment for establishing a long career! Not to mention, the logistics field encompasses a wide range of roles, including transportation managers, warehouse supervisors, inventory analysts, procurement specialists, and more. Many positions do not require a specific level of higher education or specialized training. This diversity allows individuals to find roles that align with their skills, interests, and career aspirations. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the growth rate for general logisticians between 2022 and 2032 is 18%, a rate that is much faster than average.

Whether you are looking for your first job in the industry or you have years of experience, the supply chain industry will continue to have opportunities for you. The Association for Supply Chain Management’s 2023 Salary and Career Report detailed that U.S. job seekers in the industry do not have to search for long. 76% of job seekers found employment within three months of searching. The median income for supply chain professionals also increased by three percent from 2022 to an average of $98,570. The biggest reasons respondents reported seeking a new position were wanting a higher salary and wanting more responsibilities and/or a promotion, at 28% and 24% respectively. Only four percent of respondents indicated their search was due to a layoff, which is a great sign for long-term job security.

Of course, not all jobs in the supply chain are in high demand at the same time. Here are some supply chain jobs that are currently forecasted to have better-than-average growth rates over the next several years:

Material Handlers: Material handlers, often referred to as warehouse workers or warehouse associates in a logistics company, play a critical role in keeping the supply chain moving. They work in a variety of environments including manufacturing, warehouses, distribution centers, and other logistics facilities. Their primary responsibility is to safely and efficiently move materials, products, and equipment within a facility or worksite. These are great entry-level positions for job seekers looking to break into the industry! The growth rate for material handlers between 2022 and 2032 is projected at 5%, with a large number of 421,900 projected job openings available.

Order Fillers: Order fillers, also known as order pickers or order selectors, are essential workers in distribution centers, warehouses, and similar supply chain facilities. Their primary responsibility is to locate and retrieve products from storage areas within the facility in order to fulfill customer orders accurately and efficiently. The projected growth rate over the next decade for order fillers is estimated at four to seven percent. Though this is about an average rate, there are about 450,400 projected job openings for 2021-2031.

Supply Chain Analyst: A supply chain analyst is a professional who plays a crucial role in optimizing and improving various aspects of a company's supply chain. Their primary responsibility is to analyze and assess supply chain operations, data, and processes to identify areas for improvement, enhance efficiency, reduce costs, and ensure the smooth flow of goods and services from suppliers to customers. The projected growth rate for supply chain and logistics analysts over the next decade is estimated at 11%, which is much faster than average.

Data/Automation Architect: Amidst the rise of AI and other technological advancements, there has been some buzz around the future of supply chain jobs. Not only will technology help workers in the warehouse, but it will also create new career options. Advancements in WMS systems and other software mean companies need skilled talent to implement and manage them efficiently. The growth rate over the next decade is estimated to be between eight and ten percent, which is faster than average!

The need for logistics and supply chain management is ongoing, making it a stable career choice even during economic downturns. Efficient and well-managed supply chains and logistics networks help reduce costs, minimize waste, improve customer satisfaction, and enhance the overall competitiveness of businesses in various industries. When disruptions occur, such as natural disasters or global events like the COVID-19 pandemic, the importance of supply chain businesses and the talent that keeps them running becomes even more evident, as they work to adapt and maintain the flow of essential goods and services consumers need.