The Changing Role of Women in Supply Chain Logistics

Amelia Earhart - American aviator

Women have always pushed the boundaries of convention in the transportation industry. Thank you Amelia Earhart!  Last month we recognized these heroes and celebrated their achievements. Here are some excerpts on why this is important.   

Recognizing Women in Supply Chain Logistics

Every March, we celebrate Women’s History Month. As we come to the end of March this year, it is important to reflect on how women have continued to play influential roles in the world of supply chain logistics. The increase of women in supply chain logistics has introduced more diversity to the industry bringing with it innovative new perspectives. During Women’s Month, we thank the many women serving this industry every day.

Women are Making a Difference in Supply Chain Logistics

In recent years, the landscape of supply chain logistics is continuing to change, and women are making greater impacts in the industry. One area of supply chain logistics that has shown a dramatic change is delivery drivers. As the trucking industry faced severe shortages in drivers, companies began refocusing their recruiting efforts to attract more women. As a result, women, slowly but surely, have begun to make up a larger percentage of the driver workforce.

Nevertheless, the supply chain industry as a whole is still far from including as many women in its organizations as there are men. In fact, most reports estimate that women make up only 38% of the supply chain workforce. That percentage drops dramatically when looking at the top management positions. While these figures are disappointing at first glance, there is substantial evidence that supply chain companies are recognizing the favorable skill sets that women can offer the industry.

Supply chain companies have begun to recognize how women excel at multitasking and collaborative thinking, and have made great strides in acknowledging the value in diversity. Seeing the benefit in these contributions is part of the reason why the number of women drivers has increased significantly in recent years. Many supply chain companies are optimistic that the growing awareness of the value of women in supply chain logistics will continue to expand into other areas of the industry in the upcoming years.

How Women Can Become Involved in Supply Chain Logistics   

Although the number of women in the supply chain industry is on the rise, there are still barriers for women entering an industry in which they are vastly outnumbered by men. Fortunately, the push for a more diverse workforce has inspired the foundation of a number of organizations,  such as Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS),  geared towards helping woman find careers in transportation and supply chain logistics.

WTS International, a foundation focused on advancing the role of women, particularly in the transportation sector. A sound understanding of the value of a diverse workforce and the benefit that women can bring to the industry allows WTS International to work closely with women and transportation professionals to identify career opportunities for women looking to enter the industry. The organization hosts a number of networking events, career development workshops and scholarship opportunities for women to meet potential employers, obtain the necessary education, and develop the skills necessary to excel in supply chain logistics. Organizations like WTS International ensure that women in supply chain logistics will continue to grow.

Working with organizations like WTS International will continue to expand the number of opportunities for women in supply chain logistics and change the workforce dynamics of the industry. As the number of women continues to grow, the supply chain industry will reap the benefits of inclusiveness and diversity.  

April Uhlenburg
April U

April has been working with Penn Intermodal’s Sales and Operations teams to educate clients on the benefits of leasing chassis for bulk liquid storage and transport since 2012.