After the U.S. Supreme Court voted to uphold President Obama’s healthcare plan, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), economic and investment experts began forecasting how the law will affect the overall economy, as well as specific industries – and not just healthcare companies. Supply chain is one area that is expected to benefit as the ACA is implemented. The ruling removed the uncertainty that has existed around the U.S. healthcare system for the last few years, and will allow investors and a wide variety of firms to move forward and expand.

How Supply Chain Benefits From Health Care Reform

Here are a few areas of supply chain management that are expected to benefit from the ACA:

  • Transportation/Logistics – Medical companies are increasingly outsourcing logistics as a way to reduce operations costs and focus on product development. In addition, as the global marketplace becomes more complex, they face more security and regulatory requirements when shipping products to emerging markets overseas. It makes sense to have a supply chain expert handle their logistics. Therefore, transportation and logistics firms are expected to be big winners in the new healthcare environment. In fact, UPS is already employing pharmacists to fill 4,000 orders each day for insulin pumps and other supplies needed by customers of a major medical device company. They’ve effectively cut several steps out of the supply chain by bringing the pharmacists onsite and shipping directly from the warehouse.
  • Warehousing – Shipping companies are also investing in huge warehouses to service multiple pharmaceutical firms, with high security for controlled substances and sensitive products, as well as state-of-the-art refrigeration systems. They’re betting that these big expenditures will be offset by an increase in demand for prescription drugs and medical devices, as well as for their expertise in receiving, storing and shipping these types of products.
  • Healthcare Supply Chain – Hospitals, physician offices, home healthcare agencies, nursing homes and other healthcare providers will be focusing even more on improving efficiencies and containing costs. To achieve both goals, they will rely on streamlined supply chain management, as well as group purchasing organizations (GPOs). As participation in GPOs increases, the specialized supply chains they oversee will also see increased activity.

Planning For a Supply Chain Management Career

If you’re interested in a promising career in an up-and-coming field, you should consider supply chain management – especially as the ACA is implemented. Opportunities in supply chain management exist in logistics, warehouse management, operations, research, analysis and purchasing, for employers such as government agencies, the military, banking, telecommunications, and of course, healthcare. The first step when planning a supply chain management career is to know what education and training employers are looking for in candidates.

Supply Chain Management Education Preparation

As the industry becomes increasingly complex, employers hiring for supply chain management positions will typically require at least a bachelor’s degree in business, finance, engineering, or a related field. Many will show preference to candidates with experience and/or advanced education, such as a Master’s in Supply Chain Management.

Master’s degree programs offer in-depth knowledge in crucial areas, with instruction in topics such as:

  • Advanced Techniques in Supply Chain Management
  • Managerial Statistics
  • Global Supply Chain Management and International Logistics
  • Managerial Economics
  • Materiel Acquisition Management

It may be possible to secure an entry-level supply chain management position with a bachelor’s degree and then advance your education through an employer’s tuition-assistance program.

Other Qualifications and Advancement

In addition to the right education and experience, employers will also assess candidates for job-ready attributes such as decision-making, negotiation and communication skills, as well as an aptitude for planning, problem-solving and critical thinking. Those aspiring to a career in supply chain management should plan on honing these skills while gaining knowledge of the industries they wish to work in.

Advancing in this field is possible after acquiring work experience, additional training or professional certification, such as the SC ProTM certification from the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP)TM. Career progress may also be contingent on advancing your education.

Florida Tech Offers a Master’s Degree in Supply Chain Management

Earning a Master’s Degree in Supply Chain Management can be a solid step toward a satisfying supply chain career. If you’re seeking opportunities to advance your education in this field, you should consider the Master of Science in Supply Chain Management Program, offered 100% online by Florida Tech University Online.

This master’s degree program offers Florida Tech’s renowned excellence in education, with foundational instruction in business, economics and accounting, as well as specialized supply chain management knowledge that is valued by today’s employers. Because the program is 100% online, you can take advantage of convenient 24/7 access to course materials and lectures. Attending classes and studying as your busy schedule allows makes this online Master’s Degree in Supply Chain Management a smart choice for today’s professional.

Start Planning Your Supply Chain Management Career Today

If you are driven, organized, and a natural problem solver, you may be a great fit for a career in supply chain management. Start planning your career path by checking out Florida Tech’s Master of Science in Supply Chain Management Program. Today’s job seekers need to stay on top of technology, trends and industry knowledge in order to remain competitive. A Master’s in Supply Chain Management can give you the edge you’ll need to stand out in a crowded field and help open doors to this challenging and rewarding career. 

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