If you’ve got the skills and personality traits to make sure projects are completed on time and within the budget, a supply chain management degree could be your first step to a great business career. The jobs you can do with a supply chain management degree involve overseeing the coordination and allocation of the supplies businesses need in order to run effectively. Many of these occupations offer above-average salaries, including some with six-figure wages.
Supply Chain Manager Positions
It should be no surprise that management positions in supply chain management are the top-paying careers with this degree. In different organizations and at different levels of seniority, supply chain managers hold various job titles, including Supply Chain Vice President, Consumer Sector Vice President and Supply Chain Director. Companies with an international business presence might distinguish the senior-most supply chain managers by including the word “global” in the job title. Occasionally, a supply chain manager may hold a more specific job title, such as Material Requirements Planning Manager or Solution Design and Analysis Manager.
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As a whole, workers in the category of supply chain manager earn a median annual salary of $105,610. Two-thirds of supply chain managers have a bachelor’s degree, while 19 percent have a master’s degree and 10 percent pursue some kind of post-baccalaureate certificate like a Graduate Certificate in Optimization and Supply Chain Management. An estimated 992,000 American workers fit into the supply chain manager occupation. The federal government happens to be the top employer of supply chain managers, accounting for 12 percent of the jobs in this career.
With your degree in supply chain management, you could also work in leadership roles such as operations manager, a role which in some industries pays a six-figure salary.
Jobs in Logistics
The field of logistics goes hand-in-hand with a supply chain management degree. After all, in this college educational program, you are learning to manage the logistics of the supply chain system, not necessarily to manage people or projects. Logisticians are the business professionals who analyze the entire supply chain for their organization, throughout the product’s life cycle. The overall median salary for logisticians is $74,590, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The best-paying industry for logisticians is the federal government, which employs 20 percent of the occupation and pays a median wage of $84,200.
If you work your way up from a logistics role, you might acquire the experience to become a logistics manager in a general merchandise store, the chemical manufacturing industry or the professional, scientific and technical services industry. Both logistics managers and storage and distribution managers earn a median wage of $92,460.
Although the occupation is growing at only the average rate of speed for all occupations, the BLS expects 10,300 new logistician jobs to emerge over the course of a decade.
Jobs in Purchasing
How does a company get its supplies in the first place? It must purchase them from a manufacturer or distributor. For industries that require a great lot of supplies, like manufacturing, wholesale trade and retail trade, buying supplies is no small task, but rather a full-time job (or multiple full-time jobs). The business professionals who are responsible for acquiring business supplies are known as buyers or purchasing agents. To do their jobs, they must meet with vendors and negotiate contracts to get their organization the best deal on the supplies it needs. Buyers and purchasing agents earn a median wage of $62,120 annually, the BLS reported. Once you have obtained at least five years of experience working in procurement as a buyer or purchasing agent, you may be able to advance to a purchasing manager role. Purchasing managers as a whole earn a median wage of $115,760.
Perhaps because purchasing managers account for just 73,900 of the 503,200 jobs in this field, and because the job duties are similar, the BLS classifies these roles as a single occupation. The industry that pays the best for purchasing agents, buyers and purchasing managers is the federal government, which accounts for eight percent of the occupation but pays a median wage of $88,600. Next most profitable is the management of companies and enterprises industry, which employs one in 10 buyers and purchasing managers and pays a $77,740 median salary. The median wage for the 23 percent of purchasing agents and managers who work in the field of manufacturing is $67,030. Among the major industries for this career that pay the least are the wholesale trade industry, which employs 15 percent of the workers and pays $59,540, and the retail trade industry, in which nine percent of purchasing agents make a median wage of $50,800.
Unfortunately, overall jobs for buyers and purchasing agents are on the decline, but the BLS does predict a slower-than-average five percent rate of growth for purchasing managers.