Courses in Supply Chain Management and Logistics

One realises the importance of logistics only after knowing what it means to your business when delayed deliveries of raw materials result in frequent downtime and the consequent loss of production. It is the same case when your customers start complaining that their ordered goods do not reach them as promised.

Regardless of whether you are a buyer or a seller, your interest is in delivery of your order and not in the promises made to you. A seller is worth as much as his/her uninterrupted procedures and delivering as promised.

If you have to deliver quality service, you need to know the industry norms, which is easy if you undergo a professional logistics course. While there are many courses in supply chain management and logistics available online as well as regular MBA in logistics, it is imperative that you do the right course from a reputable business school.

If you aspire for a career as a logistics manager in a manufacturing organization or a third party logistics provider, you may try a postgraduate college that offers regular MBA (Logistics). If you have a job or own a business that involves a fair amount of shipping, you may opt for a general course such as a weekend MBA logistics course.

There are immense opportunities in the field of supply chain management. Logistics is a fast growing industry. Practically every business needs to manage logistics, for which purpose it either hires a logistics manager or outsource it to a service provider. If you do a postgraduate logistics course, you can expect to get job in any of the manufacturing or retailing companies or with a service provider. If you have the entrepreneurial spirit in you, you may even pursue a career in operational management or become a logistics service provider yourself.

The fact is that efficient logistics add value to an organization. If you have any doubts, then you may want to know why logistics is rated so high. Efficient logistics and supply chain management is instrumental in lowering transportation costs, increasing cash flows and reducing inventory cost. Logistics is the ability of an organization to deliver the right quantity of the right thing at the right place in the right condition and at the right price.

Production logistics is a logistic process that ensures that each machine or workstation is provided with the right item at the right time and in the right quantity. Logistics management, on the other hand, is a component of supply chain management, which is management of a network of interconnected businesses participating in the process of providing a product or service required by the end user.

This is the age of information where every industry is developing new strategies to seize market share, the persons involved in logistics management are finding it difficult to live up to the new standards being set. A diploma in logistics from a reputable business school makes it is easy for the person in charge of a company’s logistics to perform his/her duties in a responsible manner.

How to Save Money on Art Supplies

Hobbies such as arts and crafts are important because they help reduce stress, polish your creativity and help you use any spare time productively. However, in these tough economic conditions, the art supplies that you require for your hobby can turn into a cause of further stress, thanks to their high costs. You might have to compromise on their quality or cut out some products from your shopping list in order to keep the expenses within your budget. If you don’t like to compromise on the quality of your art supplies, but cannot afford to spend exorbitantly, read on. Here are some ways by which you can save money on art supplies.

Buy in bulk

One of the easiest things that you can do is buy in bulk. If the arts and crafts that you indulge in include products that do not perish quickly, it might be a good idea to buy large quantities directly from wholesalers. The drawback of this technique is that you might not be able to buy all the things you need in bulk. However, make a list of things that do not become unusable quickly, so that you can save money on them. For example, you can stock up on fabric elements, buttons, tags, papers and other such products. Some kinds of paints dry up quickly; you might not want to buy in bulk and store them for a long time.

Reduce waste

Be very careful when you use art supplies. Before you begin an art project, plan it out so that you can reduce waste as much as possible. Saving your supplies can definitely help you save money. Additionally, make it a point to store your art supplies in the right way so that they last longer. For example, paints do not dry up quickly if you store them in a cool and dry place. If you expose them to heat, they quickly become dry and unusable. Also, place all your art supplies in a clean enclosed space in order to prevent them from possible damage due to dust and exposure to light or heat.

Keep track of discounts and offers

Be it your local retailer or an online one, keep track of the discount offers that are made available at regular intervals. These stores also put up ‘end of the season’ sales. Use such opportunities to stock up on the supplies. You can sign up with a good online store in order to receive updates about sales and offers.

Reduce allied expenses

Buying art supplies includes several expenses other than the actual cost of products. For instance, you need to drive over to the store to buy the supplies. So, you incur fuel expenses. Shopping online is a solution to reduce this expense. When you shop, you might end up buying a few products that you never planned to buy, thereby overshooting your budget. You save money if you can reduce such allied expenses.

Do not compromise on quality

Buying poor quality art and craft supplies might save you money in the short term, but in the long term, such products turn out to be more expensive because they do not last long. Also, you might not be satisfied with the final outcome because of the poor quality. So, shop only for high quality art supplies.

So, go on and shop for your favorite crafts supplies.

How Employers Can Help You Receive A College Education

Employers may not seem the most obvious choice to go to for tuition and education assistance, however employers are one of the leading providers for education programs and education assistance for their employees. Employers provide education assistance in a number of ways:

* Direct pay tuition assistance: The employer pays up front for the course, certificate, or degree program. The employee has no out of pocket expense.

* Reimbursed tuition assistance: The employer pays for the course, certificate, or degree program after the employee has successfully completed the program. The employer may pay after each course or only after the certificate or degree is completed.

* Educational/Professional Development travel assistance: The employer may pay for travel expenses related to travel to educational programs including courses at distant institutions or conferences/conventions.

* Time off without having to use vacation/personal days: If the employee needs to rearrange their schedule to make time for education, the employer may provide time off with pay. In addition, if the student is pursuing a distance education course or program but has to travel to campus or a residential education requirement the employer may allow the employee to attend without using vacation time. Employers may also provide time off without the need to use vacation time to attend college visits with your dependents.

* Direct Pay or Reimbursement for education supplies and tools: The employer may purchase or provide textbooks, supplies, or tools such as computing equipment.

* On the Job Training: This is training provided to the employee by the employer while the employee is working. Many employers have developed comprehensive training programs that mix classroom and experiential learning. Some employers have arranged with local community colleges to provide credit for the completion of such programs. If this is not the case with your employer, then prior learning assessment at a college or university may be an option to receive credit for on the job training.

* Assistance for spouses and dependents: Some employers will even provide educational assistance for the spouses and dependents of their employers. This may include tuition assistance for private elementary or secondary education as well as assistance for postsecondary education.

* 529 College Savings Program: The employer may offer a college savings program as a part of their benefits package. As a part of this program, the employer may match contributions made by the employee into the program.

While many employers provide comprehensive details on the education assistance they provide, some either provide no details, particularly if it is a small business, or would be willing to do far more if asked. This is particularly true for employees who are pursuing education in a field of study that would help them in their present position and if the employer believes that supporting the employee’s education will cause the employee to continue with the organization for a significant amount of time after the course, certificate, or degree program is completed.

In exchange for supporting education, many employers require some benefits in return. These may include any number of things, but typically include one or more of the following:

1. The employee will seek education at an institution that is of high quality – often demonstrated through the fact that the institution is accredited by one of the regional accrediting bodies.

2. The employee will earn a certain grade in the course or a certain grade point average in the certificate or degree program. This requirement varies widely from employer to employer and may require the employee to earn a certain grade in every course. In contrast, if the employee is completing an entire degree program they may only be required to earn a certain grade point average.

3. The employee may be required to stay with the organization for a certain length of time after completing the course, certificate, or degree program. This may be a standard length of time (such as one year) regardless of the length of the education pursued or it may be a length of time based on the length of the course, certificate or degree being pursued.

4. The employee may be required to give back to the organization in the form of in service or one-on-one training for other employees.

If your employer is willing to provide educational support for you, your spouse, or your dependents, it is important to get the details of that support in writing, particularly if beginning a lengthy degree program. Even if the employer currently offers tuition assistance or other education benefits as a part of the regular benefits package it is important to discuss your educational goals with your employer and ensure that these benefits are not going to be discontinued after you have started the program. It may be beneficial to write an agreement between you and your employer – particularly if your employer is providing benefits that are not documented as part of the regular benefits program.

Even if your employer is not willing to provide educational benefits in the form of those above, every employee learns skills on the job which may be documented and used in order to earn prior learning assessment credit at a college or university. It is important that employees maintain accurate and comprehensive records on their own of training they complete on the job, new skills they gain on the job, and how these skills were gained. Whenever possible, maintain examples of work completed as a method of demonstrating the achievement of objectives for prior learning assessment.