Materials schedulers coordinate raw materials and inventory with production schedules. They ensure that materials arrive at production facilities in the right quantities at the right time and that quality finished products are released.
The scope of this role is inventory components and materials. Materials Analysts manage inventory levels, coordinate with purchasing and materials budgeting and forecasting, and often have warehousing, receiving, and scheduling responsibilities. Employers seek individuals with Just-In-Time, Lean, and/or Six Sigma knowledge. Materials Analysts often work closely with engineering and product development teams to determine what affects changes in materials will have on the production of a product. Senior level Materials Analysts take on a strategic role to improve processes, quality, and productivity.
Production managers coordinate production schedules, forecast labor requirements, maintain quality, determine material requirements, and manage finished goods output and inventory. Individuals in this role often move up to plant management roles and even executive operational roles. A typical career path might be two to four years as an analyst, two to four years as a production manager, and then on to director-level roles.
Procurement Analyst/Purchasing Manager
Purchasing managers are in charge of an organization’s purchasing operations. Junior roles, such as analysts, typically focus on one aspect of procurement. Purchasing involves identifying suppliers from which to source materials, selecting those suppliers, negotiating contracts, developing the business framework for those contracts, and managing suppliers. Purchasing managers work with materials managers and manufacturing departments to determine the organization’s material needs and develop metrics for managing procurement costs, delivery times, service levels, and quality.
Analysts and managers are involved in many logistics functions, such as warehouse and distribution operations, forecasting, planning, logistics information systems, customer service, and purchasing. Analysts may focus on an area within the logistics function, while managers oversee a team of analysts. Managers negotiate contracts with suppliers and carriers, develop metrics and strategies, and oversee daily management of logistics functions. Analyst roles involve problem solving, forecasting, and ensuring that operations are running within the defined metrics.
Process engineers analyze processes within industries (manufacturing, distribution, transportation) or retail. They develop improved processes that make better, safer use of labor, materials, energy, and other resources.
Supply Chain Analyst
Analysts typically support the supply chain manager by defining and articulating business processes, performing analysis on certain aspects of the supply chain, evaluating vendors and potential supply chain partners, researching industry best practices, participating in meetings, and communicating supply chain management goals to cross-functional teams.
Supply Chain Systems Manager
Supply Chain Manager
Vice President, Supply Chain Management
Vendor-Managed Inventory/Replenishment Specialist
Customer Service Manager
Account Manager/Supply Chain Sales
Supply Chain Consultant
Director of Client Management/Engagement Manager