An informative case study from a past graduate about being on a logistics graduate scheme.

Working in Logistics

The main day-to-day tasks within Logistical Planning are to keep demands of resources up to date, being the total amount that has been planned for. Keeping an up to date balance is imperative - should the plant have nothing to manufacture the company would instantly start losing money. It is therefore quite a responsible position.

The main tasks within Logistical Planning are done on a weekly basis. These tasks involve ordering. These orders have to be accurate to ensure there is enough materials to complete customer orders. Logistical Planners have a direct link to manufacturing, therefore it is essential to these people informed as to what needs Manufacturing and Finishing. Therefore as well as planning for Manufacturing, Central Finishing also need to be made aware as to what they need to do to the product for the customer once manufactured. There are many types of finished products. Central Finishing are informed by producing weekly reports so it is known what to expect and when.

Other tasks involve producing weekly balance reports so colleagues from other functions and senior managers can see what is to be produced and how much is to be produced.

Logistical Planning is also directly linked to sales where the orders for materials are placed. There has to be a limit on the number of orders that can be placed per week. It is our job to close down order weeks at the appropriate time to protect from too many orders.

When I first started working in Logistics at my current company, like any job I didn't have a clue what was going on and thought I never would but after a couple of weeks I started to get the hang of things and started to pick things up quicker. Within Logistics there is a direct link to both commercial sales and manufacturing - therefore teamwork is essential to be able to sort out issues with all business functions. Teamwork also speeds up the learning process by observing colleagues who work in different business functions. As well as spending time in the office, time is also spent close to site for meetings or just to hand out programmes. Staying in the office all day just does not happen combined with the fact that there are also problems to solve constantly. There is always something new to get stuck into within Logistics, whether it's a new arising problem or a new project to organise.

I got into Logistics mainly by matching my personal attributes up with the requirements of the job, I then compared the requirements for working in Logistics across a number of companies to be sure it was something I wanted to start my career in. As for working in Logistics for a manufacturing company, engineering has always been an interest of mine so that decision was easy. Before I applied for any Logistics appointments I made sure it was definitely what I wanted to do. There was a lot of competition to get into Logistics I think because of the diversity and interest within the function - there's never a dull moment and I haven't looked back since.