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Overview of the Supply Chain Sector


The Supply Chain sector includes all the activities that take place to get a product to its intended market from the time of raw materials extraction to the minute the final product is delivered.

Companies involved in this process are linked to each other through a ‘supply chain’. Supply Chain Management (SCM) focuses on planning and forecasting, purchasing, product assembly, moving, storing, and keeping track of a product as it flows toward you and other consumers.

SCM includes these functions:

  • Purchasing/Procurement
  • Strategic Sourcing
  • Contract Management
  • Materials/Inventory Management
  • Logistics and Transportation


In ten key supply chain occupations in British Columbia:

  • 46,000 job openings are expected for the 2011–2020 forecast period.
  • 34,000 job openings relate to attrition and 12,000 to economic growth

Source: Accelerator Project

Supply chain labour force across Canada

There are supply chain functions and sub-functions in almost all sectors of the Canadian economy:

  • in 2014, there were approximately 820,364 workers in the supply chain sector labour force within Canada (excluding truck drivers)
  • in March 2012, the number of vacant supply chain positions across Canada was 26,852
  • the anticipated number of new and vacant positions in Canada from 2012 – 2017 will be an additional 65,979 positions/year for a total of 356,747 positions over five years
  • from 2012 – 2017, it is expected that the rate of increase for supply chain employees will increase anywhere from 8.4% for tactical occupations, to 14.9% for managerial occupations

Supply chain labour force in BC

supply chain labour force in BC

Source: Supply Chain Sector Facts and Figures [Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council]

employment by selected supply chain occupation in BC  2009 to 2016

Source: Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council [CSCSC]

For more information:

 For information on programs to assist newcomers to Canada, see:

Occupations in the Supply Chain Sector

New migrants to BC are projected to fill more than 30 per cent of all job openings in the province by 2022.
Source: BC 2022 Labour Market Outlook

BC’s supply chain sector is made up of numerous occupations.

The ten key supply chain occupations are:

  1. Senior Managers – Goods Production, Utilities, Transportation and Construction
  2. Purchasing Managers
  3. Computer and Information Systems Managers
  4. Transportation Managers
  5. Facility Operation and Maintenance Managers
  6. Supervisors, Recording, Distributing and Scheduling Occupations
  7. Purchasing Agents and Officers
  8. Customs, Ship and Other Brokers
  9. Information Systems Analysts and Consultants
  10. Truck Drivers

Source: The Accelerator Project: A Call To Action

Supply Chain Industry in BC – Employment Outlook for Occupations in Demand

Occupation Number of Job Openings
Transportation Managers (NOC 0731)  2,360
Purchasing Managers (NOC 0113)   710
Purchasing Agents & Officers (NOC 1225) 2,220
Supervisors of supply chain, tracking and scheduling co-ordination occupations (NOC 1215) 2,120
Occupations in: Supply chain logistics, tracking and scheduling co-ordination (NOC 152) (including. shippers & receivers, storekeepers, dispatchers, transportation & route schedulers, inventory control workers) 10,160
Customs, Ship & Other Brokers (NOC 1315)    230

Source: WorkBC Career Profiles

Skills Required in Key Supply Chain Occupations

Employees identified the following skills that they feel they require much more of either now or in the next five years in order to be successful in their jobs:

  • Financial planning & cost analysis
  • Forecasting
  • Knowledge of international business practices
  • Knowledge of laws and regulations
  • Knowledge of logistics functions, transportation and the supply chain
  • Mechanical skills
  • Optimization of workflow
  • General management and business
  • Languages

Source: Supply Chain Sector Facts & Figures [Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council]

New employment opportunities are also emerging in the supply chain industry. These include a wide range of occupations such as:

Supply Chain

  • Supply Chain Planner
  • Supply Chain Business Analyst
  • Supply Chain Operations Support
  • Supply Chain Customer Service
  • Supply Chain Financial Analyst
  • Supply Chain Senior Operations Manager
  • Supply Chain Process Improvement Manager

Procurement & Sourcing

  • Junior-Senior Buyer/Clerk
  • Purchasing Assistant/Clerk/Analyst
  • Procurement Specialist
  • Commodity Manager
  • Retail / Wholesale Buyer
  • Purchasing Agent/Analyst/Coordinator/Officer/Manager
  • Contract Administrator
  • Inventory Control Coordinator/Manager
  • Global Sourcing Analyst/Specialist/Coordinator
  • Quality Assurance Officer/Manager

Transportation & Logistics

  • Customs Broker
  • Logistics Clerk/Assistant
  • Warehouse Clerk/Assistant
  • Shipper & Receiver
  • Dispatcher / Dispatch Supervisor/Coordinator
  • Logistics Analyst/Administrator/Coordinator/Specialist/Supervisor/Manager
  • Land Transport Distribution Coordinator
  • Route Planner
  • Transportation Route & Crew Schedulers
  • Supervisor, Warehouse & Distribution/Team Lead
  • Commodity Manager
  • Inventory Planner
  • Freight Auditor
  • 3PL (third party logistics) Specialist / Coordinator

Operations, Warehousing & Distribution

  • Production Administrator/Assistant/Clerk/Expeditor/Planner
  • Material/Inventory Control Administrator/Coordinator
  • Warehouse Inventory Specialist/Coordinator
  • Inventory Auditor
  • Material Handler or Manager
  • Storekeepers & Parts Clerk (Parts Supplier/Supply Clerk)
  • Production Analyst/Administrator/Coordinator/Specialist/Supervisor
  • Stores/Warehouse/Distribution Supervisor
  • Warehouse Operations Manager

Sources:Career Profiles, Careers in the Supply ChainSupply Chain Sector Facts & Figures [Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council]

For more information, see:

Hiring Forecast by Region

The majority of jobs in the supply chain industry are found in Metro Vancouver / Lower Mainland, Victoria/Vancouver Island and Thompson-Okanagan / Southern Interior.

employment outlook by BC city - all supply chain occupations 2009 - 2016

Source: Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council (CSCSC) [accessed 2016]

employment by region - purchasing agents and officers

employment by region - supervisors, supply chain, tracking and scheduling co-ordination

employment by region - transportation schedulers

employment by region - customs, ship & other brokers

Source: WorkBC Career Profiles

Finding Jobs

Online Job Postings

Creating a List of Potential Employers

You can use directories to produce lists of employers in the supply chain sector in British Columbia. Contact them directly to find out if they’re hiring.

Additional Resources

Still looking for more information? Try looking at the following resources: