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Supply Chain Managers Career

Career Description

Direct or coordinate production, purchasing, warehousing, distribution, or financial forecasting services or activities to limit costs and improve accuracy, customer service, or safety. Examine existing procedures or opportunities for streamlining activities to meet product distribution needs. Direct the movement, storage, or processing of inventory.

What Job Titles Supply Chain Managers Might Have

  • Global Supply Chain Director
  • Supply Chain Director
  • Supply Chain Manager
  • Supply Chain Vice President

What Supply Chain Managers Do

  • Confer with supply chain planners to forecast demand or create supply plans that ensure availability of materials or products.
  • Monitor forecasts and quotas to identify changes or to determine their effect on supply chain activities.
  • Define performance metrics for measurement, comparison, or evaluation of supply chain factors, such as product cost or quality.
  • Analyze inventories to determine how to increase inventory turns, reduce waste, or optimize customer service.
  • Develop procedures for coordination of supply chain management with other functional areas, such as sales, marketing, finance, production, or quality assurance.
  • Negotiate prices and terms with suppliers, vendors, or freight forwarders.
  • Meet with suppliers to discuss performance metrics, to provide performance feedback, or to discuss production forecasts or changes.
  • Implement new or improved supply chain processes.
  • Design or implement supply chains that support business strategies adapted to changing market conditions, new business opportunities, or cost reduction strategies.
  • Manage activities related to strategic or tactical purchasing, material requirements planning, inventory control, warehousing, or receiving.
  • Monitor supplier performance to assess ability to meet quality and delivery requirements.
  • Participate in the coordination of engineering changes, product line extensions, or new product launches to ensure orderly and timely transitions in material or production flow.
  • Analyze information about supplier performance or procurement program success.
  • Select transportation routes to maximize economy by combining shipments or consolidating warehousing and distribution.
  • Collaborate with other departments, such as procurement, engineering, and quality assurance, to identify or qualify new suppliers.
  • Develop or implement procedures or systems to evaluate or select suppliers.
  • Document physical supply chain processes, such as workflows, cycle times, position responsibilities, or system flows.
  • Develop material costs forecasts or standard cost lists.
  • Assess appropriate material handling equipment needs and staffing levels to load, unload, move, or store materials.
  • Design or implement plant warehousing strategies for production materials or finished products.
  • Appraise vendor manufacturing ability through on-site visits and measurements.

What Supply Chain Managers Should Be Good At

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

What Supply Chain Managers Should Be Interested In

What Supply Chain Managers Need to Learn

  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Transportation - Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
  • Personnel and Human Resources - Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.
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Median Salary: $104,970

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.