By Robert Gordon
Program Director, Reverse Logistics Management at American Public University
A quick look at the major job search websites such as Indeed, LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and CareerBuilder shows thousands of available jobs in reverse logistics and reverse logistics management. In the past, the primary driver of reverse logistics roles has been the retail sector; however, more and more industries are finding value in reverse logistics. Major increases are occurring in business, professional services, and health care as well as retail jobs – which all points to growth in customer service industries.
As more organizations advertise their success with reverse logistics, this trend is expected to continue. All organizations will want to capitalize on the positive impacts on operations and customer satisfaction that come with a solid reverse logistics program.
Organizations understand that it is far cheaper to retain customers than to find new ones. Reverse logistics supports this business goal because improving the returns and repairs process helps to retain customers. Since not all items sold are perfect, or people change their mind, there needs to be a process that allows customers to be satisfied with after-sales support as well. In many cases, customers will purchase from a company for life as long as they are satisfied.
The good news is that more organizations are becoming perceptive to the entire shopping experience and better understand how buying decisions are connected. Just as a supply chain manager that has difficulty with a supplier will likely not use that company for the remainder of their career, the family shopping manager makes the decision on where to shop. After all, what organization or family is going to risk future problems with returns, warrantees, or mistakes when there are other options available?
Organizations have realized that many of their after-purchase processes are less than efficient. The hidden value here is that it is always cheaper to retain customers than to find new ones. If an organization can save 1 percent on the cost of returns and customer retention, that can result in millions of dollars saved.
More organizations are turning to reverse logistics to create a more positive shopping experience to improve the bottom line. As this trend continues, so with the growth in new jobs in the field of logistics, especially within reverse logistics. Is it any wonder that US News & World report ranks logistician as the #6 Best Business Job and #26 of the Top 100 Best jobs?
About the Author: Dr. Robert Lee Gordon is the program director for the Reverse Logistics Management department at American Public University. Dr. Gordon has over 25 years of professional experience in supply chain management and human resources. Dr. Gordon earned his Doctorate of Management and Organizational Leadership and his Masters of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix as well earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from UCLA.