What is logistics?
In simple terms, logistics deals with the movement of goods from one place to another – for example, moving raw materials from their place of origin to a factory, and then distributing the finished product to retailers for sale.
When asked for a definition of logistics, most people think of transportation, but while this is an important part logistics covers a much wider area. As well as freight and passenger transport, warehousing, inventory, stock control, production planning and purchasing are all classed as logistics functions.
Why is logistics important?
The cost of logistics activities can be a considerable portion of the costs of running a business, so making sure that these processes run as efficiently as possible is vital. Companies with efficient, lean supply chains and logistics activities can work faster and maximise their profit margins, helping to give them the edge on their competitors.
What is CILT?
CILT stands for the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport. CILT is a professional institute representing the logistics industry, promoting best practice and representing the interests of the logistics industry on a global scale. As part of this, CILT offer a range of logistics training qualifications designed to develop the skills and knowledge required to work in logistics.
What jobs can I do with a CILT logistics qualification?
The logistics industry is becoming a popular career choice, and logistics and supply chain skills are in high demand with employers worldwide. A career in logistics offers a wide range of different roles and progression options as well as good salaries – the average salary range is £20,000-£50,000, with some senior managers earning upwards of £100,000.
Since logistics itself covers so many different areas, it follows that CILT qualifications are very flexible, allowing students to tailor their course to fit a wide range of different logistics training needs. Most CILT logistics training courses (apart from the Level 6) allow you to select elective modules to suit your job role or ambitions in logistics.
Some of the job roles that a CILT qualification could lead to include:
- Materials Handler
- Shelf Picker
- Warehouse Worker
- Customer Service Manager
- Assistant Plant Manager
- Packaging Engineer
- Logistics Coordinator
- Materials Coordinator
- Distribution Manager
- Freight Forwarder
- Project Manager
- Purchasing/Procurement Officer
- Retail Manager
- Retail Merchandiser
- Road Transport Manager
- Transport Planner
- Transport Scheduler
What level of CILT course should I start at?
There are CILT courses suitable for people working at all levels, from people who are just starting out in the logistics industry through to those with considerable experience working in senior logistics management roles.
- For those who have little or no previous experience in logistics, the CILT Level 2 gives an introduction to the logistics and transport industry in its two compulsory modules. It also allows students to choose two further optional units from a range of topics including freight, passenger transport, warehousing, procurement and transport planning.
- For those with previous experience working in logistics as a supervisor, the CILT Level 3 looks at business theory as it applies to the logistics industry in its compulsory units. Students can then choose a further optional unit from topics including warehousing, inventory, procurement, freight, passenger transport, transport planning and supply chain.
- For those with experience of working at management level in the logistics industry, CILT Level 5 develops logistics management skills with a compulsory management unit. The course also offers a wide range of optional units covering a wide range of logistics topics.
- For those working at senior management level within a logistics role, the CILT Level 6 looks at the strategic elements of logistics and supply chain management. Made up of five compulsory modules, the Level 6 is the least flexible of the CILT logistics training courses, but includes the opportunity to conduct a research project based on the student’s own specialist area.
What are the benefits of a CILT qualification?
CILT logistics qualifications allow you to certify yourself as a logistics professional; gaining an industry recognised qualification while still allowing the flexibility to tailor the course to your own career goals. CILT qualifications are recognised internationally, so completing a CILT course will open up career opportunities all over the world.
CILT qualifications are highly valued by employers, so having one on your CV will help to give you the edge over other job applicants as well as increasing your chances of a pay rise or promotion. Having a CILT qualification shows employers that you have relevant, real life skills and knowledge that you can apply to your job role, and that you’re up to date with the latest best practice procedures and techniques.
To find out more about CILT logistics training courses, contact one of our course advisors today.