Inventory Control Supervisor Jobs: Salary and Career Facts

Explore the career requirements for inventory control supervisors. Get the facts about education and licensure requirements, salary, and potential job growth to determine if this is the right career for you. Schools offering Supply Chain Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is an Inventory Control Supervisor?

Inventory control supervisors are accountable for where a company's products or stock is, where it is going and how much may be needed in the future. They must keep meticulous inventory records. Inventory control supervisors ensure that employees store materials properly and advise management on ways to save money through controlling costs in different ways. These experts stay abreast to the latest trends and make recommendations when replacing some inventory is necessary.

Read more about this career field in the chart below.

Degree Required Bachelor's degree
Education Field of Study Business, industrial engineering
Key Skills Production and processing knowledge, computer skills
Certification Voluntary Certification in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) credential from Association of Production Operators (APICS) may be helpful
Job Growth (2014-2024) 2%-4% for all types of supply chain managers*
Median Salary (2017) $52,009 for inventory control supervisors**

Sources: *O*NET OnLine, **PayScale.com

What Does an Inventory Control Supervisor Do?

Inventory control supervisors create production schedules to meet production and budget goals while ensuring the safety and wellbeing of staff. They also plan to keep supply levels within desired ranges. In this role, you spend a significant amount of time on the plant or sales floor as well as at a computer, working with sophisticated inventory and supply-chain management software. You meet regularly with other managers and company executives as well as vendors, suppliers, transportation providers and other logistics and supply personnel. You need to know good labor management practices and be able to solve complex and challenging problems.

According to some recent job postings on the Association of Production Operators' website (APICS), employers are looking for people with skills and experience in creating plans to optimize business performance and distribution expenses, as well as the ability to meet a company's capital goals. Many require candidates to have plant scheduling experience as well as a basic understanding of standard computer software.

How Can I Prepare for this Job?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a bachelor's degree in business or industrial engineering with a CPIM certificate and related work experience may give you an edge over your competition (www.bls.gov). Undergraduate courses might include management, business, finance, mathematics, production management, labor law, statistics, manufacturing technology and other courses relevant to your major. Good written and verbal skills are essential because inventory control specialists frequently communicate with other managers, customers, vendors and transport personnel.

APICS offers the Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) credential. It avails workshops and courses covering supply chain management, planning, production operations and other related material. Candidates must pass a series of exams after completing their preparation. You need to participate in activities and courses every three years to keep your certification active (www.apics.org).

APICS offers a career page where employers can post jobs and applicants can search for work. For supervisory positions, many employers require at least two years of experience in plant scheduling, proficiency in spreadsheet programs and inventory management software, knowledge of plant scheduling tools and the ability to communicate well with personnel from all organizational levels.

What Is the Potential Income?

According to PayScale.com in 2017, the salary range for most inventory control supervisors was $30,671 to $65,257, with a median of $52,009.

What the Growth Outlook for this Career?

O*NET projects that openings in supply-chain management, which include inventory control supervisors, will experience slower-than-average growth due to imports and automation, leaving a projected growth of between 2% and 4%. Those who have both experience and credentials should find more opportunities than those who don't.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Alternative careers might include such positions as construction managers, industrial engineers, or management analysts. All of these jobs require a bachelor's degree to start. Construction managers work with a team to oversee the planning, budgeting and supervision of a project. Industrial engineers work with analysis of a business to eliminate waste. They come up with plans to run things in the most efficient means possible. This could include the training of employees or replacing inefficient machines. Management analysts work directly with managers and executives to make recommendations on how a company can become more profitable by reducing costs to increase profits.

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