8 Facts About Logistics Managers

The process of sending out food products to supermarkets  is not as simple as what you might think. There is an extensive amount of thought in how food travels. Factors like efficiency and worker availability both play a role in the decisions made.

Who are the individuals who coordinate the logistics of food?

Today Food Grads is taking a look at the facts behind Logistics Managers and how they play an integral role in the delivery of food products to supermarket shelves.  They ensure that everything goes smoothly and customers never have to wonder where their products are!

1. Logistic Managers organize the distribution of food

Logistic managers are individuals who:

Oversee the purchasing and distribution of products in a supply chain. They do so by performing tasks such as maintaining and growing vendor relationships, verifying compliance to policies at the site level and supporting facilities in the ordering process by troubleshooting systematic issues

Overall, logistics managers are senior level logistic coordinators and ensure that freight operations run smoothly. Although these professionals are not directly involved in  manufacturing they still have an important role.

If it were not for logistics coordinators than finished products would never make their way to the stores!

2.  Logistics Managers have flexible educational backgrounds

Logistic managers have a range of educational backgrounds. These backgrounds include business, computing, economics, logistics and management. Most food companies are flexible when it comes to background education. Some companies however are more rigid and require the student to have a degree in logistics and/or transport/distribution management.  Many times companies are more interested in the student having work experience in inventory control and supply chain related experience.

In Canada, Seneca offers a Supply Chain Management- Global Logistics program which would benefit a student looking to enter this profession. Alternatively, in the United States Ohio State University offers Logistics Management which has courses such as finance, statistics and advanced logistics management.

3. Logistic Managers solve problems

When transporting food problems arise regularly. These problems include weather delays, geopolitical situations, theft and damage. One problem a logistics manger might come across is filling a short term gap or future contract for a temporary driver. A solution might include hiring more permanent drivers so that more people can be drawn upon at a moments notice. Logistic managers are problem solvers because they find the solutions to problems that prevent food from arriving on time.

4. Logistic Managers promote efficiency 

A company can have the best product possible but if it is unable to get to the customer than the product will not succeed. Products need to move efficiently from the manufacturing plant to the store. Logistic managers generate reports on how quickly and accurately warehouses fill orders for stores. By analyzing these reports managers can determine shipment delivery times and ways to remove bottlenecks and obstacles for all logistic operations.

5.  Logistic Mangers know safety

Logistic managers are typically responsible for supervising warehouse staff. These areas in manufacturing plants can be dangerous as forklifts move frequently  in and out of these areas. Logistic managers maintain detailed safety reports and ensure that safety training is all up to date on all their workers.

6. Logistic Managers work in fast moving environments

Food manufacturing plants produce a lot of product in a short-period of time. In order to prevent bottle-necks and excess stock in their inventory, warehouses need to push products out fast. In order to keep up with this demand logistic managers need to thrive in fast-paced work environments. They stay organized to ensure that stress does not build up.

7. Logistic Managers manage people 

Logistic managers perform a multitude of different tasks and this includes supervising, coaching and training warehouse workforce. Effective mangers are able to allocate tasks and understand their strengths and weaknesses.

8. Logistic Managers have these sets of skills

  • Quick Follow-through-  Logistic managers need to follow up on every portion of theirs plans to ensure it is correctly performs.  This might include calling up a supermarket to ensure that an important delivery arrived on time. If the delivery did not arrive on time than they quickly take and find a solution to the problem. Efficiency is the key.
  • Adaptability- In the supply chain, problems can come up at a moments notice. Problems like inclement weather and sick workers can easily affect how fast a product moves. Logistic managers need to be quick on their feet and ready to make any necessary changes to their already made plans.
  • Sound Decision-making- This skill develops with experience. Logistic managers must be able to make sound decisions and fast. Workers need to have confident managers because helps to create certainty in an ever changing environment.

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