The movers and shakers: 3 things to know about the logistics industry

Don’t we enjoy receiving our online buys and handwritten cards promptly in the mail? For the smooth delivery of our items and day-to-day lives, we all have the Logistics industry to thank.

Wait. What exactly is Logistics, again?

For those who need a refresher, the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (the leading global association for supply chain management professionals) defines logistics as “part of the supply chain process that plans, implements and controls the flow and storage of goods and services between the point of origin and the point of consumption to meet customers’ requirements.”

This oft-overlooked industry hides a wealth of opportunities that you shouldn’t miss!

Without further ado, here’s a quick introduction to why you should sit up and take notice of the field that’s crucial to every organisation and business in the world.

1. Logistics = Boring and Dull? Far from it!

“Logistics is such a boring field”

“Logistics isn’t for those who aren’t technically inclined”

“Your career development is non-existent if you join Logistics”

If you’ve heard these statements or even wonder about them yourself, then you should know that all these statements couldn’t be any further from the truth!

One of the fast-developing fields there is—in huge part due to the rapid growth of E-commerce retail—the Logistics industry requires many hands to be on deck to ensure that people and businesses receive the goods they need on time. Career options are very diverse, so you may even get an opportunity to get international and cross-industry exposure. From front-end planning, managerial to behind-the-scenes roles in the warehouses, transportation and even vehicle assets, there are many current and emerging careers such as Transport Engineers, Digital Platform Managers and Data Scientists. So, there’s always something that may catch your eye.

The advent of Industry 4.0 has also transformed an erstwhile traditional sector. Companies like Walmart have begun using disruptive technologies like wearable AR devices, which provide digital support to workers during manual picking operations to reduce travel time and errors, as well as driverless vehicles and drones. This has led to evolving roles and new opportunities for both new entrants and current professionals alike. Individuals with critical soft skills (think leadership or customer service) or IT know-how (big data, analytics) are therefore in high-demand today, and the Logistics Manager of today might find himself becoming the Customer Care Director of tomorrow!

As vast as the oceans? Possibly!

There are quite a few fields in the logistics industry! You can find individuals working in procurement logistics, distribution logistics, green logistics, reverse logistics, emergency/humanitarian logistics, digital logistics, construction logistics, and more. For a deeper dive into possible occupations and career pathways, why not check out the Skills Framework for Logistics?

2. Singapore has one of the world’s most robust logistics industries

Singapore has cemented her position as a global trading and business hub, which in turn gives rise to our thriving logistics sector that we see today. A key backbone of the economy, the Singapore freight & logistics market is expected to reach a market value of USD 114.81 billion by 2023 !

Just how active is active? As of 2018, Singapore is home to the world’s busiest transhipment port and the 12th busiest airport by cargo traffic. A recent report by global commercial real estate services organisation Colliers International found that the logistics and e-commerce sector take up the lion’s share of Singapore’s occupied warehouse space. At 44%, that’s no small number.

Singapore has also been the leading logistics hub in Asia since 2007! Currently, 20 out of the top 25 global major logistics firms—like DHL and Yusen Logistics—have set up their regional or global headquarters here, with many leading manufacturing firms basing their supply chain control towers and distribution centres in our little red dot too.

Other achievements under Singapore’s belt include being the first country in the world to establish an integrated ICT logistics system in 1989. Known as the National Single Window (or TradeNet), the platform digitizes and streamlines trade permit approval processes. Always at work to improve and innovate, Singapore has since launched an enhanced version (the Networked Trade Platform) with even more value-added services.

The Singapore Government has also developed and launched the Logistics Industry Trade Map (ITM) and the Logistics Industry Digital Plan (IDP) to take the local logistics industry to greater heights while adding 2000 new jobs for PMETs by 2020. If you’re looking to join a field bursting with potential, the logistics sector could be what you’re looking for!

Same same, but different

While Logistics and Supply Chain Management are often used interchangeably, they aren’t the same. Rather, the former is considered a subset/component of the latter.

3. Asia is set to be a key player for logistics in a growing trade economy

Southeast Asia (SEA) has been experiencing fast economic growth driven by the rise of the middle and consumer classes. China, the owner of the world’s largest consumer market and the world’s largest logistics market—total social logistics costs (TSLC) in 2016 for China reportedly exceeded RMB 11.1 trillion (approximately USD 1.6 trillion) —also launched the ambitious Belt and Road initiative in 2013, which will connect Asia and Europe through physical infrastructure development.

Singapore’s strategic location in the heart of SEA, coupled with a reputation as a world-class logistics hub, makes us well-poised to benefit from these new trade flows. This is done by presenting ourselves as a distribution hub for the region, and offering expertise as an international financial and business centre.

With all these opportunities at our doorstep, there surely is no better time to explore a career in Logistics! For those keen on giving this sector a chance, a wealth of resources (such as Professional Conversion Programmes) is available at hand.

If you’re compelled to plunge deeper into the world of Logistics and curious about how E-commerce comes into play, here’s one event not to miss!


As part of their CollabX series, PSB Academy will be bringing together renowned industry leaders from Alibaba and Agility International Logistics to share with you the latest industry trends and exciting job opportunities in Logistics and Supply Chain Management.

You’ll also get a chance to network with fellow peers and learn about SkillsFuture initiatives that will help you further your Logistics journey!

Mark your calendar for this rare chance to hear and pose questions to industry heavyweights like Mr Eddie Sng (Managing Director,Agility International Logistics) and Dr Long Yin (Solution Architect, Alibaba Group)!

Sign up for the event now!

[1]Singapore Freight and logistics market-growth, trends, and forecast (2019-2024, Research and Markets Report)

[1] Glimpsing the road ahead: reshaping the logistics market. Panorama of the Asia logistics property market now and in the future (Colliers Pan Asia Logistics Market Report).

[1]The World Bank Logistics Performance Index (Aggregated rankings)



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