How to Become a Logistician

Logistics is an important part of many organizations that deals with the management of the flow of products, information, and a variety of other resources from the originating point to the end point to meet the needs of consumers. Logisticians are trained professionals that examine and coordinate the logistical functions of a company or organization.

What does a logistician do?

Logisticians are responsible for coordinating, scheduling, and managing the allocation of products and materials. They are responsible for the life cycle and supply chain operations of a variety of products including attainment, allocation, internal distribution, delivery, and resource disposal. They also set up the storage and transportation of materials. They work to ensure the proper timing, efficiency, and costs of the distribution process. Logisticians are also responsible for customs documentation when applicable. They often work with other departments to ensure customer needs and requirements are met and discuss other issues. They develop a solid understanding of the needs of customers and complete required tasks to make sure the needs are successfully met.

What kind of training does a logistician need?

Logisticians usually need at least a bachelor degree in logistics or other related field. Students complete a variety of courses in areas such as logistics management, information systems, supply chain management, order processing, sourcing, and warehousing. Many prospective logisticians complete internships or gain part-time employment to gain practical experience. Most employers provide on the job training for new logisticians that include instruction on company policies, procedures, and expectations. Logisticians often gain certification from professional associations such as the International Society of Logistics and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport. They must stay up to date on the current advancements in the field and they often complete continuing education and additional training throughout their careers.

What are the prospects for a career as a logistician?

Employment of logisticians is expected to grow faster than average for all professions from 2006 to 2016 (1). The growth of manufacturing firms and increased need for logistics services will drive job growth.

Job prospects are expected to be good, especially for logisticians with extensive experience. Some job openings will arise from the need to replace logisticians that retire, transfer, or leave the occupation for other reasons.

How much do logisticians make?

As of November 2009, the average annual salary for logisticians is $76,000; average annual logistician salary varies greatly on education, experience, benefits, location, employer, and industry (2).

A career as a logistician is an excellent choice for individuals with a strong interest in the logistics of a variety of organizations. Logisticians must be natural problem solvers and enjoy scheduling and working with a variety of details. They must have excellent organizational skills and good judgment. They must also have great communication and interpersonal skills because they interact with a variety of clients, suppliers, transportation firms, and other professionals. Logisticians must also be able to work effectively as part of a team.

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