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December 17, 2017
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Practitioners name top supply chain schools, certifications

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The supply chain research and education organization SCM World has published its members' picks for the best sources of supply chain talent.

Which university and certification programs reliably turn out strong supply chain talent? A list released by SCM World, a U.K.-based organization for supply chain practitioners, includes some familiar names as well as a few surprises.

The rankings are based on responses from 331 participants in the group's 2013 Chief Supply Chain Officer survey. Respondents were asked to name the three professional certifications they deem "most valuable" as markers of supply chain talent, and the three universities and business schools they believe are "most valuable" as producers of supply chain talent. To prevent any bias, the question was open-ended, with no list for respondents to choose from.

Respondents' picks included well-known U.S. and European supply chain degree programs, such as those at Michigan State, Penn State, Cranfield, University of Tennessee, and Georgia Tech. It also included schools like Harvard and Stanford, which do not award supply chain degrees—but do turn out highly sought-after MBAs.

The top professional certification programs included those offered by APICS, the Supply Chain Council, Institute for Supply Management, Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals, and Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, among others. The surprises in that category: Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP), a certification most often associated with perishable product quality control, and Certified Management Accountant (CMA), awarded by the Institute of Management Accountants.

One takeaway from this varied list, said Kevin O'Marah, SCM World's chief content officer, is that "business wants cross-functional supply chain knowledge rather than narrow technical skills."

The complete list is available here.

Top 10 universities for supply chain talent

  1. Michigan State University
  2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  3. Pennsylvania State University
  4. Arizona State University
  5. Stanford University
  6. Georgia Institute of Technology
  7. Cranfield University
  8. University of Tennessee
  9. Harvard University
  10. Ohio State University

Michigan State University was ranked as the number one place to find supply chain talent, according to a recent survey of 331 supply chain executives conducted by SCM World.

Source: SCM World, Chief Supply Chain Officer survey (2013)

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