Supply Chain Roles Become Strategic Imperatives: Annual Survey

by Ruth Seeley

With the exception of buy local and farm-to-table movements that track every step of the supply chain process that moves products from origin to manufacturers, distributors, and consumers, supply chains are often invisible to consumers. The coronavirus pandemic has put supply chains in the spotlight as people now realize the crucial role they play in maintaining the flow of goods and services. Prior to COVID-19, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that demand for supply chain professionals exceeded supply by a ratio of six to one. As the workforce is reshaped by this pandemic, the need for supply chain professionals will only continue to grow.

The Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM) today released the results of its 2020 Supply Chain Salary and Career Survey Report. The data collected from over 2,400 U.S. supply chain professionals shows that, in addition to offering high salaries and good benefits, a career in supply chain offers job fulfillment, opportunities for advancement and variety of work. Furthermore, an overwhelming majority (88%) of respondents have a positive outlook on their careers, and 85% say that they would recommend working in supply chain to those in other industries.

“The role of the supply chain professional has evolved into a strategic imperative essential for every aspect of a company’s operations to provide the goods and services needed for the economy to thrive,” said ASCM CEO Abe Eshkenazi, CSCP, CPA, CAE. “While supply chain professionals have always known their work was contributing to something bigger than themselves, consumers are now more keenly aware of the direct impact supply chain has on their daily lives.”

A new component added to the survey this year looked at skillsets; most notably was that leadership skills such as critical thinking and the ability to communicate/collaborate with others are just as, if not more, important than technical skills. “These transferable skills span industries and, when combined with the right training and professional development, can enhance a supply chain career” added Eshkenazi.

Additional key findings from ASCM’s third annual salary and career survey include:

  • Salaries are solid: Supply chain professionals with a bachelor’s degree reported a median salary of $78,750, which was 24% higher than the national median salary.
  • Opportunity for additional earnings and significant raises: 91% of respondents reported receiving additional compensation like bonuses and profit sharing. Yearly pay raises averaged 4.7%, which is higher than the national average pay raise of 3.5%.
  • Benefits are good: 79% of respondents reported being satisfied with the quality of their benefits, with almost three-quarters of supply chain professionals being offered paid family/medical leave and more than 80% receiving three weeks or more of vacation time.
  • Gender gap continues to narrow: When it comes to the gender pay gap, the study found that for the second year in a row, respondents below the age of 30 reported the same median salary regardless of gender.
  • APICS certifications matter: Those who held at least one APICS certification reported a 21% higher median salary than those without a certification, and 18% higher than those with other certifications.

ASCM is currently providing free access to its Basics of Distribution and Logistics online module, which is part of ASCM’s Principles on Demand online content series. This curriculum introduces the foundations and operations of distribution channel design, inventory management, packaging and material handling, transportation management, warehouse management and much more. 

More information on supply chain careers and the full report can be found here

Source: Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM)


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