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The Most Valuable Skills for the Future of Supply Chain Management – Part 1

The supply chain is a complex and constantly evolving part of doing business. Although the tools and strategies may change, the need for first-rate supply change management will continue to be crucial to the success of business firms. This article will cover some of the best skills supply chain managers can possess. Obviously, there are many more skills than the ones we will cover here, but these are a good starting point for achieving sustainable success in a supply chain career. Many of our readers are industry veterans and are well aware of the skills needed to achieve lasting success in supply chain management. Others may be just beginning their career and are looking for ways to increase their industry knowledge and expertise. However, the supply chain of the future will most likely look very different from where it is today, so there are opportunities to learn for everyone.

Supply Chain Management

Project Management

Project management is a crucial skill for supply-chain managers. The ability to manage teams of people in a variety of roles is a balancing act that is tough to handle on a consistent basis. Projects are a driving force for creativity and innovation. Skillful management of projects can be a major source of value creation for a firm. Good project management comes down to creating a structured yet flexible approach that can be tailored to a variety of situations. Managers who set clear objectives and timelines for a project can set themselves up for sustainable success.

eCommerce and Online Procurement

The business world is increasingly becoming more online. This trend towards e-commerce is rapidly changing a variety of industries. More firms are recognizing the importance of this new and growing business segment. As e-commerce continues to expand, supply chains must adapt to new challenges. Complicated deliveries, shorter fulfillment times and increased load variety are all problems that will face the supply chain of the future. Supply chain managers who have a solid understanding of e-commerce and online procurement are setting themselves up for future success and profits.

IT Knowledge and Skills

As supply chains become increasingly more technology driven, it is important that managers have a solid understanding of information technology, its uses, and implementation. Managers were once able to solely rely on the company’s resident “IT guy” for all the business information system tasks. Now, however, it is important for managers to have a working knowledge of the business’s IT systems. This cross-training allows managers to be more flexible and adaptive. Armed with this knowledge, suppliers can now take a more proactive approach to problem-solving, rather than be completely dependent on the “IT guy”. For the freight/LTL industry, this means supply chain managers must develop an understanding of the company’s TMS. Whether it is developed in-house or leased from a third-party, it is important that managers possess the expertise required to effectively utilize these systems. A good first step to developing this expertise is to partner with a reputable 3PL such as LTX. We have access to both the tech and knowledge required to effectively navigate this oftentimes confusing aspect of the supply chain.

With over 100 years of combined industry experience, LTX is your source for all things supply chain and freight. LTX is a firm believer in the power of knowledge. Our main goal is to arm our customers with the information they need to make sound strategic decisions. Check back soon to read part two of this series on the future skills of supply chain managers. If you have any questions or want to take the next step and partner with the LTX team, then contact us below today!

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