Managing in a material world

Posted by Part Time Jobs Online | Thursday, November 20, 2008

Materials management is the management of materials in an industry, with the person in charge of the department coordinating orders,purchase, inventories and the transportation of materials from the store to the factory and then to the retail outlet.

A materials manager will ensure that there are no bottlenecks in the demand and supply chain, “Earlier, there were different departments that looded after each function--- store, inventory, operations--- now all these have been clubbed together under materials management, which is an inseparable part of supply chain management: says Asish Chatterjee, faculty, IIM Calcutta.

In a globalised world , there is increased competition on cost, delivery and variety.Although, there is a proliferation of product lines, product life cycles have become shorter.There is a need to cut lead time, inventory and lost sales. All this calls for efficient and quick supply chains.

An example can be taken of dell computers that started a business of upgrading IBM compatibles in1983.This was despite a sales growth of 40 percent,which wasnot sufficient to cover expenses that shot up by 55 percent.Dell realized its costs were high because of sales through retail channels,creating a lot of waste in form of inventory and unsold goods.”it was then that DELL established its direct model-started assembling PCs after receiving orders and supplied directly to customers, thus briging down inventory to 13 days from 75 days.”says prof Chatterjee.This improved profits and is a good example of how an efficient supply chain can turn around a business.
In order to do well in this profession, you haveto be a multitasker.”And you will have towear many hats to be a successful executive,” says Bimal Ghosh, vicePresident of the idian institute of Materials Management .

(IIMM-East) adding, “you should also be able to take quick decisions, be a good negotiator and have a cool temperament.” He modern industry belives in cost savings. Hence,a materials manager is much in demand and he often commands a lucrativepackage,which could run up to Rs.1 lakh per month.

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