Supply Chain Modeler Blog

5 ways to gain relevant supply chain experience to help you win in the job market


It can be frustrating seeking a job right out of college. Most new graduates struggle to find a job because they don’t have relevant experience. So this issue is you have to get a job to gain experience, and all of the jobs your applying for require supply chain experience, so how do you ever get the experience?

Even if you’re just changing positions companies specifically look for experience in your new role, and yet again it is challenging. A lot of job seekers waste their time looking for the “perfect” new job. So during this time, the job seeker still isn’t gathering and working for supply chain experience.

How does a person get the relevant supply chain experience while competing in the competitive job market? There are in fact many ways you can earn experience, and we are going to look at those top five ways:


Get an Internship

If you want to get experience while you’re in training or before you shift to a new position in the supply chain, hands down the best way is to get an internship that is suited to the position you would like to work in after college. Internships are great because they provide you a way to work and practice in your chosen field but also a way to network with supply chain professionals in the industry, increasing your odds to land a job quickly when finished with college.

You may get a job offer from the company, or you may not. More importantly, you now have increased your chances of getting a job in the supply chain because you have relevant experience. To absolutely get the most benefit from your internship, try to intern in roles that you are interested in as a career choice. For example, if your goal is to work at an electronics company, then interning for a fashion supplier would not be the best choice for an internship.


Get an Interim/Temporary Job

Another great way to get relevant experience is through a temporary or interim job. You will be able to find several temporary jobs in the supply chain industry, that can let you gain experience and hopefully help you to transition into a full-time supply chain role.

Temporary jobs help you gain experience and also help to prevent any gaps from unemployment in your resume. With temporary jobs, you will understand what it’s like as an employee in that position. Many job seekers ignore this job option and end being unemployed while looking for their full-time job.

Pursue a Certification

Many certification programs are available in the supply chain. Certifications help improve your awareness of how supply chains functions. If you have good recipes and additional certifications, you will stand out from other candidates applying for jobs. Some of the organizations that offer certifications in the supply chain are APICS, CSCMP, ISM, ISCEA and many more.

Let’s look closer at some of the more popular certifications. Three of the most popular are CPIM, CSCP, CPSM. CPIM is great if you want to work in the inventory and production management area of the supply chain. CSCP is excellent for in general for the supply chain management. If you’re going to have a career in purchasing, then CPSM is a great certification choice.

Here is a guide on choosing supply chain certifications.

Take Courses to Build Skills

Another excellent way to gain experience and the right skill set is through supply chain courses. Many organizations offer supply chain courses in different areas. There are now online courses offered, and you can schedule the classes when they are best for you! Check out various platforms like Cousera, edX, and Udemy for class options.

You would also want to take a look at some of these best supply chain management books.

Do Volunteer Work

You can also gain experience through volunteering. If you can’t find an internship and or a temporary job in supply chain management, then you can always volunteer to work at specific companies. It’s crucial to target the right organizations, and getting volunteer work is challenging.

Remember while you are trying to gain experience, through interacting with supply chain companies, it’s important to dress professionally, be punctual, and appropriate at work. Whether it’s an internship, temporary or volunteer position.

Getting experience is crucial to being hired for a supply chain job, and for most people seeking employment this is the hardest part of fulfilling job requirements. It’s essential to look at your approach when seeking job experience, try one of these ideas to gain the experience needed to start your career.

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