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?
Logistic managers 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!
Logistic managers organize the distribution of food
Logistic managers plan, organize and monitor the shipping, receiving, storage and distribution of all items received either from suppliers, vendors or food manufacturing plants. Overall, logistic managers are senior-level logistic coordinators that ensure that products move in and out of a manufacturing plant correctly.
Some of the responsibilities of a logistic manager include managing the receipt of inventory, preparing products for shipment and managing the physical inventory or items within the warehouse.
A key component of a logistic manager’s job is tracking the time it takes for a product to be made in the factory and delivered to the customer. They track how long a product sits in the warehouse, how long it takes for someone to find the item in the warehouse and how long the product is on the road.
Additionally, depending on the size of the company, logistic managers are also responsible for supervising warehouse staff and drivers. They organize the warehouse to provide a safe workplace and proper storage of inventory and materials. If it were not for logistics coordinators, finished products would never make their way to stores!
Logistics managers have flexible educational backgrounds
Logistic managers have a wide range of educational backgrounds. However, most Logistic managers have bachelor’s degrees or diplomas in 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 or transport and distribution management.
This is also a profession in which work experience is vital. If someone is looking to become a logistics manager, they might be able to sidestep school altogether simply by having enough work experience. Having experience in shipping and receiving, warehouse and inventory control are applicable experiences.
Logistic managers solve problems
Transporting food products from around the world to the grocery store involves a lot of problems. These problems include weather delays, geopolitical situations, theft and damage. Logistic managers need to be forward thinkers and make accurate predictions as to potential problems which could arise.
For example, a logistic manager might have to fill a three-month leave of an employee. Potential solutions include hiring more permanent drivers or hiring a temporary worker for three months. Logistic managers are problem solvers because they find the solutions to issues that prevent food from arriving on time.
Logistic managers promote efficiency
A company can have the best product in the world, but if it can’t deliver it to the customer on time, the product will not succeed. Products need to move efficiently from the manufacturing plant to the store.
Logistic managers use metrics such as warehouse capacity, accurate order fulfillment, and the tracking of trucks to determine how fast a product moves. By analyzing these metrics, managers determine shipment delivery times and ways to remove bottlenecks and obstacles for all logistic operations.
Logistic managers know safety
Logistic managers are responsible for the safety warehouse staff during their shifts. Warehouses can be dangerous places to work in. There are multiple warehouse hazards such as the forklifts, conveyor belts, material storage and manual lifting of products.
Logistic managers maintain detailed safety reports and ensure that safety training is up to date on all their workers.
Logistic managers work in fast-moving environments
Food manufacturing plants produce a lot of product in a short period of time. To prevent bottlenecks and excess stock in their inventory, warehouses push products out of the building fast. To keep up with this demand, Logistic managers thrive in fast-paced work environments and stay organized to ensure that stress does not build up.
Logistic managers manage people
Logistic managers perform a multitude of tasks which include supervising, coaching and training the warehouse workforce. Effective managers allocate tasks to their workers by understanding their strengths and weaknesses. They figure out the best person for a job and trust them to get it done.
Logistic managers follow through promptly, adapt and make sound decisions
Being a logistic manager requires a wide range of skills. However, there are a few which are more essential than others. These skills include:
- Quick follow-through– Logistic managers make sure that their plans go correctly by following up on every portion of it. One example of a follow- through could be calling up a supermarket and checking if an important delivery arrived on time. If the delivery did not arrive on time, Logistic managers quickly find a solution to the problem. Efficiency is crucial.
- Adaptability – In the supply chain, problems come up at a moment’s notice. Problems like inclement weather and sick workers 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 plans.
- Sound decision-making – This skill develops with experience. Logistic managers must make sound decisions quickly. Workers who are confident in their managers build the foundation for workers to develop organizational skills, experience and knowledge.