How To Highlight Essential Skills For A Supply Chain Resume

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 10 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Supply chain management is a challenging industry that often requires a unique combination of hard and soft skills. To demonstrate your expertise in these skills, highlighting them on your resume is essential. Learning about the different supply chain skills and how to showcase them on your resume can be beneficial when applying for a job. In this article, we discuss some essential skills for a supply chain resume, explain how to highlight them on your resume and share some tips to improve them.

Related: Jobs In Supply Chain Management (With Salaries And Skills)

Essential skills for a supply chain resume

Here are some common skills for a supply chain resume that you can focus on:

Problem-solving skills

Problem-solving involves identifying challenges and taking appropriate actions to solve them effectively. Supply chain professionals solve problems related to trade regulations, compliance, supply, quality, transportation and invoicing on a daily basis. The ability to think quickly and implement accurate solutions allows these professionals to reduce delays and find cost-effective solutions. Staying updated on the latest supply chain management trends and best practices can help improve your problem-solving and decision-making skills.

Communication skills

Effective communication plays an important role in a team achieving its goals. Strong communication skills enable supply chain professionals to clearly communicate protocols, processes, plans and reports with partners and team members. Listening is an important aspect of effective communication as it equips you with information critical to making informed decisions. Strong communication becomes even more critical in the supply chain industry due to its global nature and the frequent requirement to interact with people of different nationalities and cultures.

Risk assessment skills

Supply chain professionals use risk assessment skills when deciding on production goals, inventory management and transportation schedules. They take into account Internal risks and external risks to ensure that a company can manage unforeseen emergencies. These professionals stay aware of risk factors by conducting audits, preparing reports, implementing risk assessment checklists and using other tools to mitigate the risks. This can help them eliminate wastage, improve efficiency and provide more accurate forecasts.

Analytical skills

Analytical skills help supply chain professionals to derive actionable information by analysing raw and unstructured data. The ability to analyse complex data enables them to improve internal processes and optimise the movement of products. They also work with business and data analysts to prepare data dashboards related to various supply chain sub-functions to analyse the performance. A strong business acumen empowers these professionals to comprehensively evaluate the business and improve its performance. Supply chain professionals also use tools like enterprise resource planning software and other data intelligence techniques to improve operational efficiency.

Interpersonal skills

Supply chain management involves coordination and interaction with multiple internal and external stakeholders. Interpersonal skills allow supply chain professionals to empathise with others and develop beneficial relationships that help them to run the company's supply chain operations smoothly. This is an essential soft skill and takes conscious effort to develop. Interpersonal skills include teamwork, dependability, leadership, motivation, flexibility, patience and empathy.

Project management skills

Project management skills are essential to complete within the set budget and time. It is a skill that is in high demand in the supply chain industry because it determines your ability to plan, manage, execute and finish assigned projects and supervise your team. Hard skills, like software and business tools expertise and soft skills, like communication, interpersonal and leadership skills, are part of project management skills. These skills enable project managers to use resources efficiently and meet deadlines on time.

Team-building skills

Supply chain management involves the collaboration of multiple stakeholders to manage each step of the process. Team-building is a crucial soft skill that enables professionals in this industry to build efficient teams that function in conducive work culture and environment. Supply chain managers and leaders develop a culture of strong teamwork to run daily operations. Effective team-building skills can help supply chain managers develop diverse and productive teams to achieve or exceed their targets.

Negotiation skills

Negotiation is the trait of gaining the maximum benefit from a deal. In supply chain management, strong negotiation skills can be essential to provide a company with quality raw materials, reliable logistics partners and services from other vendors in a timely and cost-efficient manner. Inadequate negotiation skills may affect a company's bottom line and weaken its relationships with internal and external stakeholders. Hiring managers place a lot of emphasis on this skill, so consider mentioning on your resume the positive outcomes you delivered by utilising your negotiation skills.

Procurement skills

Procurement is an essential aspect of supply chain management. A supply chain professional approves or leads profitable purchases for a company. Profitable procurement requires strong research and negotiation skills to search and close deals that save money for the company. Expertise in global procurement may add to your overall professional experience. You can highlight quantifiable procurement accomplishments from your previous jobs on your resume to create a favourable impression on the recruiter.

Sourcing and vendor selection skills

Vendors are an important part of a supply chain ecosystem. From raw materials to transportation, selecting the right vendors helps a business achieve its production goals. Vendor selection is also an important aspect of a risk assessment strategy, as reliance on a single vendor may present a risk to business continuity. By selecting the right vendor, a business can potentially lower production costs and maintain quality standards. Possessing experience in managing a large vendor network can help demonstrate your relationship-building skills with external stakeholders and service providers.

Related: Soft Skills: Definitions And Examples

How to highlight your skills for a supply chain resume

Consider following the below techniques when showcasing essential skills on your resume:

1. Assess your skills

Supply chain management is a crucial business function that comprises multiple sub-functions, like procurement, logistics and production. Carefully read the job description and other requirements to prepare a comprehensive resume. Research about the job role can help you focus on the most relevant skills. Create a list of your relevant skills and briefly mention the quantifiable achievements from your previous jobs that show expertise in those skills.

2. Describe each supply chain skill you possess

When writing your resume, refer to the skills identified in the previous step and elaborate upon each skill. You may include your proficiency level in each skill by using words like advanced or expert. Here are two examples of how to include your skills on your supply chain resume:

'Advanced expertise in demand forecasting'

'Expert in using a variety of enterprise resource planning software'

Related: What Is A Supply Chain Manager? A Complete Guide

3. Provide quantified results

In the section highlighting your professional experience, mention the results achieved in your previous position. Consider using numbers as quantified results can demonstrate a measurable impact of your skills and expertise. Highlight major accomplishments using action verbs like improved, increased, spearheaded and led. Here is an example of how to share quantified results:

'Led a nine-member team of procurement executives and reduced procurement cost by 7% by finding a new supplier.'

4. Use keywords

Keywords are catchphrases that applicant tracking systems (ATS) track to shortlist job applications. Many recruiters in the supply chain management industry rely on ATS to manage applications and analyse resumes. An effective way to optimise your resume for ATS is by adding the right supply chain management keywords and skills. There are two types of keywords:

  • Hard keywords: These keywords represent testable skills and hold the top priority in the ATS ranking. For example, the hiring manager can prioritise enterprise resource management skills.

  • Soft keywords: These keywords include soft skills for which there is no test, but they remain important for doing well in your job. These include skills like team-building, leadership and communication.

Related: Hard Skills: Definition And Examples

Tips for improving supply chain skills

Here are some tips you can use to improve your skills as a supply chain professional:

  • Ask for feedback: When enhancing your supply chain skills, ask a team member or your manager for feedback on your weaknesses and strengths.

  • Set a goal: Determine the supply chain skills you want to develop and set goals for your desired outcomes along with an achievable timeline.

  • Break down the skill: Breaking down a skill into sub-skills is an effective way to learn different components of the core skill.

  • Find learning opportunities: Taking online courses and gaining certifications enables you to advance your supply chain knowledge.

  • Get a mentor: Learning from a mentor who already possesses the skills you are improving can give you access to expert guidance and tips.

  • Practice your skills: Regularly practising your skills can improve knowledge retention, help you stay confident and provide practical experience.

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