Author:Varkonyi, Irvin

The market for supply chain professionals, including logisticians, acquisitions specialists, operations managers and more, continues to offer opportunities. Median pay for logisticians in 2016 was $74,170 according to Bureau of Labor statistics. That number increases for those classified as working in professional, scientific, and technical services, as well as those working for the federal government. But, regardless of the industry, a bachelors degree was increasingly a requirement, even for many entry level positons.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics states, "As logistics becomes increasingly complex, more companies prefer to hire workers who have at least a bachelors degree. Many logisticians have a bachelor's degree in business, systems engineering, or supply chain management. Bachelor's degree programs often include coursework in operations and database management, and system dynamics. In addition, most programs offer courses that train students on software and technologies commonly used by logisticians, such as radio-frequency identification (RFID)." (1)

That software and technology education is becoming critical for logisticians and related industries. Prospects for the greatest job growth is expected in the world of e-commerce with giant firms such as Amazon, Walmart and major defense contractors and integrators. Logistics Management magazine states, "In our 33rd Annual Salary Survey ... respondents who said that they're highly knowledgeable about e-commerce are bringing in a median salary of $105,000 compared to the $73,500 earned by those who say they are on the low end of the learning curve." (2)

Is a graduate degree a requirement? Is it helpful in career advancement? According to's employer reported data, all signs point to yes with supply chain managers holding a Master's or MBA pulling in six figures ($101,338-$109,031). (3)

Logisticians and supply chain managers already working in the field may consider returning to school for an advanced degree to enhance their career potential. These graduate programs, similar to undergraduate degrees, are delivered in a variety of ways--the traditional brick and mortar degree, the all online degree and the hybrid degree, with the latter becoming a preferred method.

Online often provides the greatest flexibility. However, U.S. News dr Worlds Report, well-known for its annual report and ranking of colleges and universities, found that whether online or in-person, part-time MBA...

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