Distribution managers analyze, plan, and direct operations related to the procurement and distribution of products. Distribution management includes involvement in operations such as transportation, warehousing, forecasting, order processing, inventory control, production planning, site selection, and customer service. Logistics management utilizes the total cost method to analyze the total expenses of different operations in order to achieve the optimal level of customer service while minimizing costs. The area of distribution is quite expansive and is associated with physically moving products from location to location, buying and selling goods, as well as channel management activities.
An occupation in distribution management gives employees a great launching pad to begin their promotion through the organization. As part of their job distribution managers regularly work with managers of various other departments in and outside of the organization. This allows them to expose themselves to many people and grants these managers many opportunities to advance their careers.
Distribution companies prefer to bring on applicants that are undergraduates or have their MBA’s. Various starting positions related to distribution include positions as the physical distribution manager, inventory control manager, traffic manager, distribution center manager, distribution planning analyst, and customer service manager. Additionally one can become a distribution manager in the transportation industry by working in management of operations or transportation marketing.
Normally distribution management careers require interpersonal leadership skills so that mangers can deal with employees coming from a wide variety of backgrounds. It is also helpful that applicants are good communicators, have strong analysis skills, and are able to view management with a broad systems perspective.
One needs a good foundation in the main aspects of business, particularly in distribution associated areas like logistics, transportation, purchasing, and negotiation to work in distribution management.
At the very least a bachelor’s degree is needed to work in channel Management, but an MBA is preferable.
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