Career Prep 

Want to Make an Impact? Choose a Career in Supply Chain Automation

By Greg Conner, Vice President of Corporate Development & Marketing,
Bastian Solutions

I was recently on a Sunday afternoon Zoom call (gotta love COVID-19) with some friends from college. As the conversation progressed through a multitude of topics from the weather to the trials and tribulations of U.S. politics, one of my friends expressed how much he dreaded Monday mornings. Although he has a great job, he said he feels “uninspired.” My other friends quickly jumped in acknowledging their agreement. I asked: “What would make you all feel ‘inspired?’” Almost in unison they all said they “want to feel as though their work is truly making an impact.”

Doctors save lives. That’s an easy one. Likely impacting hundreds, maybe thousands of lives each year. The same can be said for social and health care workers, first responders, lawyers, dentists and teachers to name a few. But the supply chain? What do we impact?

Then it hit me. The supply chain impacts everyone. Without it, we cease to function as a society. Think about it; how many online orders have you placed during COVID alone? How does that gallon of milk or pound of ground beef that you rely upon for meals get to your grocery store? It’s the supply chain!

Does the supply chain industry make an impact? You bet it does, and there has never been a better time to start a career in supply chain automation—even if you’re still a student or have never seen a conveyor or industrial robot.  

Nearly every major supply chain automation company is hiring and hiring aggressively. One major supply chain automation company announced that it intended to fill 1,000 new openings in the fourth quarter of 2020 alone, and these numbers are not outliers.

With the exception of the great recession of 2008 and 2009, Bastian Solutions has been on a growth tear. Since 2010 our company has grown 550%—and not just because we are a great company with a superior culture. Sure, those qualities have certainly contributed, but the demand within the industry of supply chain automation can’t be overlooked.

What does “impact” look like in supply chain? I was 24 years old when I sold and helped execute my first multimillion-dollar automated system. The end user was a large pharmaceutical company. The purpose of the project was simple—improve process efficiencies to get insulin to patients faster. It doesn’t get more impactful than that! To have the ability, at age 24, to weigh-in and drive those changes, was a very cool opportunity.

Two years ago, I ordered Christmas gifts online from DICK’S Sporting Goods. The experience was average, but the gifts took nearly two weeks to arrive…cutting it close to December 25. Fast forward a couple years and the experience was totally different. 

Like many companies, DICK’S Sporting Goods continues to invest heavily in its supply chain. One of these investments was a new distribution center in Conklin, New York, which features an advanced automation technology called AutoStore. This system allowed DICK’S Sporting Goods to dramatically improve its ecommerce fulfillment processes—manage inventory more efficiently, reduce fulfillment errors with better scan and ship, and better overall storage and space use. 

So, how did the order go this year? My Christmas order from DICK’S Sporting Goods arrived in two days! Pretty darn cool impact!

If you’re someone who, like me, had never seen a conveyor belt or a robot, I encourage you to jump on YouTube and see what’s waiting for you. If you’re dreading Monday mornings and are ready to embark on a career and not simply a job, check out our openings. 

Maybe it’s time for you to start making an impact!

Related posts