Published: 2019-10-18 07:00:00
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CAPS Research is a non-profit supply chain management research company whose mission states their aim to become the center of the supply chain management universe. The organization provides comprehensive and practical results for strategic-minded corporate members. The organization has also been the de-factor industry standard for benchmarking, and Practice reports so supply chain and logistics personnel can gauge their efforts and can also use the websites knowledge database and the tools provided therein to evaluate their own strategies and practices (CAPS Research, 2016). On opening the companys homepage, one immediately notes the prevalence of a red theme for the websites with multiple navigational links on the top of the page. These links include links to upcoming logistics and supply chain networking events, membership application, benchmarking options, and the companys contacts. On the top right of the page is a link for new member signup. Immediately below the red band at the top of the page, there is a slide show of company offerings with scenic landscape backgrounds. The scenic mountainous backgrounds serve to draw attention to the most recent products while the animations themselves are also navigational links. Below the flash animations, the website is then divided clearly into the three main offerings, benchmarking, networking events, and research all of which are important in career advancement in the supply chain management industry. The websites navigation is smooth with easy access to multiple informational links.

One of the most important determinants of advancement in most careers is networking. That is, having people in the industry knowing what you can achieve and your skills. Networking is important as it helps in learning about new job or educational opportunities that may advance the individuals logistics career. However, networking first requires clearly defined career goals so that the graduate can determine who to network with. CAPS Research membership provides the opportunity to attend company-organized events where the graduate would meet other experienced professionals and even gain a mentor who works in the same career path. The benchmarking provided by the website would be useful in the present and future for assessing the skills gained so far. While this may also be done informally by a mentor, CAPS Research offers a trusted platform for evaluating skills. The research section would be useful in keeping updated with current developments in the industry which would help in keeping updated with the skills that employers want. The research and benchmarking would greatly save on time and distress from job rejection letters. Therefore, it is important for a supply chain professional to first assess their skills to determine their skillsets and educational needs before job application. Chain Management Review is a US based business management magazine that deals with trends and analysis in the supply chain management industry. Similar to other business magazines such as the Harvard business review, the website publishes content in features and columns contributed by supply chain experts such as industry analysts, school professors, and supply chain practitioners with topics ranging from software and technology, supply chain education, sourcing and procurement, and transportation and logistics. The website content is targeted towards C-Level executives, Directors, and VPs responsible for supply chain and logistics decision-making in their organizations (SCMR, 2016).

The magazines website,, is organized into three main columns that each provide multiple links to the latest informational content plus a short synopsis of the information contained therein with the leftmost column starting with the top story, and immediately beneath it the latest content in the paper. The second column has links to whitepapers, blog posts, and webcasts with supply chain professionals. The third column contains links to subscribe or view the monthly magazine while the lower part of the column hosts advertisements. Similar to CAPS research, the website also provides easily accessible links to subscribe to the premium PLUS service that offers access to premium content such as the latest features and comprehensive industry analyses.

The website and its associated magazine would be beneficial to a career in logistics and supply chain management as they help to keep relevant with industry trends. In order to progress from an entry level positions to positions with more responsibility and benefits, it is important for the professional to read trade publications and newsletters. These publications reflect the prevalent ideas in the industry and can help in determining possible career paths. After gaining a working knowledge of the current dominant ideas and technologies, it is prudent for a professional to enroll in logistics and management programs. The specific programs are heavily reliant on an individuals career goals and their current skill set. There are websites that simplify access to these certification programs through an online interface and digital products and lessons. Institute for Supply Management is one of the oldest and largest supply chain organizations with over a century since its foundation. The Institute and website cater to an audience of organizations and professionals in supply chain management providing training, qualifications, publications, education, information, and research on the industry. The organization offers two professional qualifications, the Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (CPSD) and the Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM), while a partnership with W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University caters to the organizations research funding (ISM, 2016).

On the top of the homepage, there is are two rows of navigational links with the first row containing links to join ISM membership, the organizations contacts, and the individuals shopping cart. The second row of navigational links being linking to information about the website, the current news and research, and the upcoming conferences and events. Below these links is a large flash animation with several slides advertising the website products and upcoming conferences. One the left, below the blue-themed there is a panel of navigational links that lead to the certification and training products offered. The panel provides links to eISM online learning, ISM services, CPSD/CPSM Certification, and extra study materials and training products (ISM, 2016). The remaining part of the homepage is dedicated to links for registering for professional certification exams, and additional study tips and program resources.

In order to advance in the industry and become a leader, it is imperative that professionals continue undertaking professional and educational qualifications that will expand their scope of knowledge and skills. This is mainly done via targeted qualifications like the CPSM which proves mastery of strategic sourcing and the CPSD. Due to the long-standing history of the organization, earning a certification from them would improve my resume significantly and managers want logistics leaders with updated qualifications and knowledge. Additionally, ISM also provides opportunities for networking through professional networking events. These events are important in meeting other professionals in the industry and potentially gaining a mentor while their mastery program enables the life-long learning required to stay relevant and effective in the industry. The large organizational member base would be especially useful as compared to the other sites on this list that are relatively new with fewer membership that the ISMs advertised 50000 plus membership. Therefore, it would be easier to find a knowledgeable mentor in their networking events. Having a mentor is critical as they would provide advice on possible career paths, what is needed to achieve career goals, and the individuals progress in achieving these goals. Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals is non-profit organization that provides educational resources and networking opportunities to supply chain professionals. The website is organized into clear and defined sections with the topmost are of the website homepage containing links to organization membership, recent and upcoming events, certification programs offered, current research, education, careers and awards, and the roundtable concept. Immediately below this row of links is a flash animation that provide more information to the organizations certification programs such as the SCPro, CSMP, and the current offers (CSMP, 2016). These animations also contain links to their respective educational products or certifications.

As a well-established organization in the supply chain industry, membership in the organization would greatly enhance the networking opportunities available to those interested in pursuing a career in supply chain management. As one of the best known providers of the SCPro certification, membership in this organization would also facilitate the expansion of technical knowhow. The SCProTM offers career development opportunities to career professionals as candidates in the program deepen their skills, knowledge, and abilities (CSMP, 2016). Additionally, earning the certification shows a capability to analyze supply chain issues, design and implement effective change across a broad range of global supply chain functions. Therefore, gaining the SCPro qualification enables supply chain professionals to distinguish themselves in career knowledge and skills possessed thus giving them more opportunities for career advancement. Membership in CSCMP would also be beneficial in terms of access to research and informational products directly related to the industry. The website has a large knowledge base on academic case studies, global perspective on the industry from experts, supply chain practitioner case studies, and the Supply Chain Quarterly which is a peer-reviewed quarterly journal focusing on supply chain management and logistics. In a male-dominated industry, the csmp website also has a dedicated annual report on women in logistics. The report covers topics ranging from demographic profiles of female executives in the logistics industry, their career patterns, and the role of mentoring on empowering female logistics executives. The report also shows that the organization cares about ensuring diversity in the industry which is critical in continued innovation. (American Production and Inventory Control Society) is also a professional organization focusing on the supply chain management industry and provides educational products, certification programs, and research. APICS has one of the largest membership estimated at more than 45,000 members and is considered as one of the premium established supply chain organizations next to giants like the Institute for Supply Management. Since its establishment, the institute has provided a variety of designation professional programs. Currently, they offer the Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) program that provides a logistics executive with the ability to comprehend and analyze production and inventory operation in the company global activities (APICS, 2016). The APICS CPIM has the advantage of having a large knowledge base and alumni body in the industry while also being recognized by thousands of employers worldwide. Another program offered by the organization is the APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) Certification Program that equips executives with the knowledge an...


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