What’s it all about then?
This is a role which is vital to the continued profitability of the company.
As the company Supply Chain Manager you’ll be leading the team which transfers all of the products your company makes on to the end user; in the food sector this will be either a major supermarket retailer or a wholesale distribution business.
As well as this you’ll be responsible for organising the incoming raw materials and ensuring that these are brought in on time and to specification.
In short you’ll have responsibility for the movement of all goods through the business from raw material inputs, through the processing, and on to the final customer.
You’ll work closely with purchasing officers, warehouse staff and transport clerks to make sure all of the products reach depots as scheduled, and in perfect condition.
What might I be doing?
Your duties will be extensive and based around the following:
- Planning an effective supply chain strategy for your company, possibly in conjunction with company directors
- Supporting production departments and ensuring that all materials are in place at the right time so that service is seamless
- Overseeing the movement of products to final depots and stores
- Ensuring inventories are accurate and minimising stock levels
- Evaluating and auditing the performance of contractors against agreed arrangements
- Monitoring data and ensuring all information is accurate
- Planning timetables for deliveries
- Working closely with suppliers and customers to improve operations and achieve maximum efficiency at optimal cost
- Leading a large team of staff and making sure performance targets are hit
- Communicating needs & objectives to managers & key personnel in purchasing, logistics & distribution.
- Negotiating contracts with suppliers and third party haulage operators
- Accurately calculating total supply chain costs in relation to proposed new projects.
What will be expected of me?
You’ll need to be an extremely capable manager and organiser to cope with the complexities of the role of supply chain manager.
You’ll have to be computer literate and have well honed problem solving skills.
Your people skills will be very well developed as well in order to motivate your staff to achieve demanding and time bounded targets.
What can I expect?
At this level you will work during the day, usually between 8am and 6pm, although you could expect phone calls and problems to crop up at any time.
You will normally be office based and may have some travel to visit customers and suppliers in order to maintain effective working relationships.
What about the pay?
Depending on your exact role and range of responsibility you could be earning well over £40,000, although you are likely to have started on less and worked your way up to the job of supply chain manager.
Senior supply chain managers can earn up to £60,000 and, if you work in a large company as a supply chain director, then you could be earning more again.
What qualifications do I need to get in?
If you want to commence a career in supply chain management then you will likely have started in a graduate trainee role and you’ll have a studied for a degree which gives you a head start in the job.
You may also have started with a company in a more junior role, for example as a transport clerk, and you could have worked your way through to supervisory and management levels.
In this instance you may have studied for qualifications offered by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) which range from level 2 to level 6
What about further training?
There are a variety of options which you could consider and these include CILT qualifications for which a variety of options exist at each level; this means that you can select from a wide range to suit your own needs
CILT UK also offers courses and training at higher levels, like the Level 5 Professional Diploma in Logistics and Transport, aimed at supply chain managers.
You could also choose from a wide range of postgraduate management qualifications which will help take your career to the next level.
Anything else I might need to know?
Yes, this is the sort of job that is vital to food manufacturers so it’s a really good opportunity to assist with careers development.