Hiring Material Planners
Materials planners are professionals who oversee and manage the logistics of materials and inventory during projects. They forecast the supply needs and ensure the companies always have materials on hand. The planners receive project plans and information from different departments and determine what materials will be needed and when. They ensure that key deliverables get achieved in line with the clients' requirements. These professionals play a crucial part in ensuring that the plant operations run smoothly. The role has a major impact on the cost of operations and production for a company. Usually, entry-level professionals earn an average salary of $55,000 per year. Experience in the field contributes significantly to the salary differences, with senior-level planners earning around $78,000 annually. In addition, they enjoy other benefits like health insurance, retirement benefits, and paid time off. Job seekers often began their careers as a clerk or a procurement agent before getting promoted to a materials planner position.
Role responsibilities and duties
The specific job duties for material planners differ based on the employing company. However, several core tasks are common across the field. The primary responsibility of the role is to provide efficient logistics planning and management of materials. Material planners monitor the supply status and facilitate the delivery of items as per the required specifications. They gauge trends and client requests to organize and manage inventory schedules and are responsible for resolving issues that could affect the supply, sometimes escalating issues that need attention. Material planners are also required to prepare a daily checklist to ensure that all reports and tasks are completed on time, with correct and relevant information. They also manage the internal and external reporting of all the shipments. Other duties may vary by employer but may include coordinating supplier payments with accounting or purchasing departments, negotiating contracts, and expediting orders as and when necessary. The job is accomplished in liaison with vessel and operations teams, including shipboard management, vendors, and sub-contractor suppliers.
Educational and skill requirements
Employers require material planners to have a high school diploma and a bachelor's or an associate's degree in logistics or supply chain management. Some hiring managers specify desirable majors when screening applicants for the role. Additionally, some employers may also want the candidate to have SAP training and necessary certifications in quality management protocols. A professional certification (like Certified in Production and Inventory Management or CPIM) can improve employability and assist with career advancement. The candidate must have prior experience in supply chain, with a proven track record in material planning and vendor management. They must demonstrate the ability to multitask, manage processes, and have experience influencing stakeholders within the process. Additionally, hiring managers prefer candidates who are competent in planning and organizing and have excellent communication skills. They must also be target driven, take ownership, and be a self-starter.