How does a consumer product manufactured in the UK reach retail stores in the US? The answer is simple. Logistics.
Logisticians are the professionals who organize and coordinate an organization’s supply chain. Whether you are an entry-level logistician who aspires to advance in the field or an entrepreneur who wants to gain more knowledge on the supply chain, then a qualification in logistics would suit you.
See Also: How to Become a Logistician in the US
1. College Programs
In general, you need an associate degree in logistics to get started as a logistician. So the first credential that should be on your sights is a bachelor’s degree in supply chain and logistics management. Building on the associate degree, the program will enhance your knowledge of warehouse management, transportation management and global logistics among other key topics.
Some of the best schools for a bachelor’s in logistics include:
- Bellevue University, Nebraska
- Northumbria University Newcastle, Newcastle
If you aspire to work as a logistics officer for the US military, you will best be served by pursuing the degree program offered by the American Military University in West Virginia.
While a bachelor’s degree will enable you to land logistics management positions in small to medium-sized firms, a graduate certificate or a master’s degree is the qualification you need to knock on the door of large, multinational companies.
The University of Missouri–St. Louis, for instance, offers a graduate certificate in supply chain management, which can supplement your undergraduate training and ready you for jobs in global firms.
A master’s degree in logistics management is, of course, the credential designed for logisticians who want to get to the furthest heights of the profession. Offered in institutions like Florida Institute of Technology and the University of Kent, the program will prepare you for a logistics job in diverse settings, from the military to humanitarian assistance and business logistics.
2. Professional Qualifications
Unlike college degrees, professional qualifications demonstrate that the holder adheres to a set of occupational codes of practice. So if a potential employer wants to know whether you will discharge your duties diligently, he or she is likely to check whether you have a professional certification.
The American Society of Transportation and Logistics (AST&L) is one of the few professional organizations that certify logisticians. It offers the following credentials:
- Certified in Transportation and Logistics (CTL)
- Global Logistics Associate (GLA)
- Professional Designation in Logistics and Supply Chain Management (PLS)
- Distinguished Logistics Professional (DLP)
The International Society of Logistics also awards the Certified Master Logistician (CML) and Certified Professional Logistician (CPL) qualifications.
In the UK, the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) offers three qualifications for supply chain practitioners, including logisticians. If you have broad logistics experience with little formal training, the Supply Chain Foundation Practitioner Award will suit you. The other two qualifications include:
- Supply Chain Professional Practitioner Award
- Supply Chain Master Practitioner Award.
Remember that to obtain any of these credentials, you must pass the corresponding certification examination or complete program units.
3. Membership Qualifications
How about getting a certificate just by becoming a member of a professional organization in the logistics field? Well, that is what CILT offers you. You can choose to become a regular member (MILT), a Chartered Member (CMILT) or a Chartered Fellow (FCILT), after which you will be awarded an appropriate certificate.
These membership certificates are typically valuable in the UK, where the issuing organization is situated.
See Also: How to Become a Courier
Finally, your decision to further you career with a qualification in logistics is certainly well-informed, and you should not look back. In the US, for instance, the employment of logisticians will grow by 22 percent (twice as fast as the national average for all jobs) within the next six years.