As the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports in the figures above, the demand for logisticians is expected to increase significantly over the next decade. Logistician careers require employees to coordinate and analyze an organizations supply chain, managing the entire life cycle of a product as it is obtained, distributed, allocated, and delivered to its recipients. They provide oversight for purchasing, shipping or transportation, inventory, storage, and delivery activities for their clients. They may handle anything from consumer goods to military supplies and use highly technical software systems to conduct the planning and tracking of goods:
- Cultivate business relationships with customers and suppliers
- Determine customers' needs and strategize how best to meet them
- Conduct the allocation of materials, supplies, and finished products to the intended destinations
- Review logistical functions, identify areas for improvement, and suggest changes to management and customers
This job requires attention to detail, ability to multitask, and a strong ability to think critically and logically. Logisticians must have an ability to work with technical software systems and programs designed specifically to manage logistical functions as well. Because the work environment for logistician careers is constantly changing, those who work in the industry must stay current on advances made in logistics technology and be able to incorporate changes as necessary. In many cases, logisticians are required to travel frequently to visit distribution centers or manufacturing plants.
Job Growth for
Becoming a Logistician
To gain an entry-level job as a logistician, a candidate generally online needs an associate degree or even just courses in logistics. Although this is enough to enter the industry, logisticians will need a bachelor's or master's degree to advance within the company. In addition to (and sometimes in substitution for) having the proper educational background, logisticians typically need to have prior experience in a related field such as business or logistics. If a logistician seeks employment in the military part of this industry, it can be helpful to have a background in serving in the military.
Certification can be an added measure in improving a candidate's chances of being hired by providing further proof that they are capable of performing their job well. Logisticians can get certification through the International Society of Logistics or American Society of Transportation and Logistics. Certification requires a combination of experience, education, and successfully passing an exam.
- Industrial Engineering
- Supply Chain Management
In addition to having the right educational background, experience working in the field, and certification, students seeking careers as logisticians should possess the skills necessary for successfully completing the requirements of the job. These skills include communication, critical-thinking, organization, and problem-solving, which are all elements of what the student will encounter as a logistician. Having this skill set and demonstrating it in the work place sets the candidate in an advantageous position when current or potential future employers evaluate them for possible hire or advancement.