Supply chain management firms constantly look for people possessing high skills of flexibility, understanding and communication. To get into such a firm one must have a bunch of qualities such as good Project management skills, Technical understanding, Cost accounting skills and the ability to understand financial statements, e-business / e-procurement systems, Troubleshooting, problem solving skills, Understanding of cross-cultural issues, Understanding of the legal issues involved in managing contracts.
Along with the technical skills a candidate should have a set of Soft skills and personality attributes like the ability to communicate effectively through presentations, email, one-on-one, and team discussions, ability as a natural facilitator to enable team-based decisions, good time management and Leadership skills, Understanding of customer’s expectations, vision – creating the environment, Desire to learn, Ability to present oneself with confidence, Ability to think on ones feet, Ability to pass on knowledge and mentoring and be as flexible as possible with the changing needs of the client.
Below mentioned are some skills that will help to excel in a supply chain firm
1. Get certified:
There are various certifications like the one conducted by KPMG: Block chain and six sigma green belt certification. This helps a candidate gain all the knowledge needed to know about the working and process of a supply chain management firm. There are so many new terms and terminologies which are very essential to learn and one can get to know all those with the help of these certifications.
2. Have good excel and presentation skills
Supply chain management firms expect a swift analytical skills and good presentation skills. For such firms making your client understand all the aspects in an excel so that it is easily understandable. Extensive use of charts and concise tables with relevant conclusions will be an added boon.
In consulting firms, client delight plays a very important role and stands number one in the mission/ vision and values for them. It is important to have excellent presentation skills. Being precise, concise and always to the point. Utilise every space of the power point presentation.
3. Flexibility and multi-tasking skills
In a consulting firm it is important to adapt oneself with the changing demands and circumstances put forth by the clients. For this, flexibility plays a very important role. It gives you the ability to let others do the innovative thinking and boost their confidence in presenting out of the box ideas and make relevant suggestions. It will make sure that constant changes in the work process will not faze you or cause you undue stress and irritation. Besides, the entire team will be encouraged and boosted up to accept any challenge that comes along, rather than resist change.
4. Negotiating and problem solving skills
To be a good negotiator or a problem solver, it is necessary to understand all the current situation faced by the client and be updated with it. After that it is necessary to analyse the issue and identify the problem. Once this step is achieved then the further process becomes a cake walk. A good negotiating skill is necessary while working with suppliers to be able to obtain the best possible solution and find other alternatives if one of them does not work out. Client always looks into savings, which when achieved plays a significant role in extending the contract with the consulting firm. But things also easily go wrong in the world of supply chain management. Incorrect predictions, unexpected mishaps, wrong deliveries, unavailable products which is needed urgently, misunderstood product specifications and late shipments are some of the problems that require an efficient supply chain manager with strong problem-solving skills to solve.
5. Planning and Analytical skills
Supply chain firms deals with pricings every single day. There are so many retailers and suppliers who put forward their quotations with different pricing models. It is important to have those analytical skills along with strong numerical and conceptual thinking skills to infer which supplier is giving competitive prices and who are boasting their prices. Having a perfect platform and method for comparing the prices needs effective planning and scheduling skills. These skills will come in handy during your day-to-day duties as one candidate will be totally responsible for co-ordinating all supply chain activities for the client. The candidate should have skills to deal with the Enterprise Resource Systems and many other supply chain software and know how to analyse the results shown by these tools.
These are the skills needed for a candidate to successfully flourish in the Supply chain world and become a good leader and excel in this field.