Commonly Asked Logistics and Supply Chain Management Interview Questions and Answers

Supply Chain Management is crucial for business performance, which benefits them in the streamlined flow of goods and services as well as improved customer satisfaction. Logistics is a crucial component of the supply chain that guarantees the smooth transportation of commodities or products from the place of production to the final destination. It establishes the general procedure for purchasing, storing, and shipping products. Therefore, in today's rapidly changing global economy, efficient supply chain network development and management is very important for an organization.

Obtaining Logistics and Supply Chain Management Certification helps candidates to gain comprehensive knowledge about Logistics and Supply Chain Management tools and techniques. They also have hands-on experience in using these tools and implementing them in an organization for effective business processes. We have prepared frequently asked interview questions for professionals who are interested in a starting career in logistics and supply chain management. These interview questions help them ace the interview and land a position that best suits their skills.

The key elements of supply chain management are planning, locating raw supplies, production, delivery, and returns. The planning phase entails creating a comprehensive supply chain strategy, whilst the other four components focus on the essential conditions for putting that strategy into action. However, in order to establish an effective supply chain and prevent costly bottlenecks, businesses must develop expertise in all five areas.

The Supply Chain Management system is regarded to be the backbone of today’s commercial organizations. The following are the important objectives of Supply Chain Management.
  • Improving efficiency
  • Improving quality
  • Optimizing transportation and logistics
  • Reducing costs
  • Enhancing customer satisfaction
  • Improving distribution
  • Maintaining better coordination

Logistics and Supply Chain Management Certification professional’s answers should include relevant skills and how they will benefit the organization. Professionals can answer, he/she feels that excellent customer assistance is necessary for a successful supply chain employee in addition to communication skills. This trait will enable him or her to meet and negotiate with vendors. He or she should continue to be courteous and professional, which will build a strong, dependable connection with them.

Certified Logistics and Supply Chain Management professionals should share new technology they have learned about and how it could benefit businesses. They can even discuss transportation software applications. This application integrates every single operation starting from a single panel using computerized monitoring techniques. Professionals may monitor inventory numbers, oversee distributions, and handle shipments from anywhere using this specific panel, which can significantly increase productivity levels.

Anti-dumping duties are levied on imports made in foreign nations that are priced below the fair market value of comparable products on the domestic market. The government applies anti-dumping duties on imports from other countries when it thinks the products are being dumped through cheap pricing in the domestic market. Anti-dumping taxes are established to shield regional markets and enterprises from unfair competition from imports from abroad.

Supply Chain Management minimizes the cost of all sorts of business expenses, such as the cost of purchasing, producing, and transporting items, by creating an optimized supply chain. This reduces a company's operational costs. It allows a seamless flow of raw materials between a supplier and a firm and the movement of finished goods between a company and its clients. This reduces the holding period for both raw materials and finished goods. As a result, losses are minimized and business expenses are kept to a minimum overall.

There are several essential components of logistics management to run the supply chain efficiently and scale up your organization. They are:
  • Demand planning
  • Storage and material handling
  • Inventory management
  • Fleet management
  • Transportation management
  • Information and control

Full Truckload transportation or FTL is a method of shipping used when goods require the entire space of a truck. It is employed when a shipper has more than 10 pallets to transport. FTL shipments travel the whole distance in the same vehicle. When compared to LTL or PTL shipping, FTL shipping has a faster transit time. This makes it the ideal choice for businesses that need to move huge amounts of goods.

This question helps interviewers understand how professionals prepare for scenarios in which their company may experience a large shortage of its stock. In the event that a company runs out of any of our products, Logistics and Supply Chain Management experts will first ascertain the source of the material or product deficit and then estimate how much, if any, is still in stock. They then consult with the original vendor to determine whether we may place a last-minute supply purchase.

The activities performed at the operational level in logistics are
  • Collecting the products from the supplier’s packaging
  • Transport via road, sea, and air
  • Customs clearance
  • Delivery of the commodities
  • Warehousing
  • Quality assurance/quality control
  • Sorting the products
  • Stock management
  • Restocking of inventory
  • Distribution of the stores
  • Handling of return shipments

Logistics and Supply Chain Management professionals can track the goods and manage the flowchart in import clearance with the aid of shipping. It helps the buyer or business in planning the receipt of the items and in recognizing what items are being delivered. This is a particular delivery confirmation for the logistics team, without which professionals cannot begin production planning.

Employers want to know how employees remain in touch with suppliers since they could be located all over the world. Certified Logistics and Supply Chain professionals can respond that they can use chat management software to connect with international suppliers. This allows enabling the supplier to inform them of the progress they have made in producing and transporting the supplies.

A contract of affreightment is a binding agreement signed between a merchant and ship owner to reserve space on a ship for the shipment of goods. The rights and responsibilities of the merchant and the ship-owner are outlined in the contract of affreightment. This document's primary goal is to place responsibility for transferring a specific quantity of items at a specific time on the carrier.

Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) assists manufacturers in managing production planning and shop floor scheduling. Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) software reduces lead times to fulfill customer requests and makes it simpler and faster to react to unforeseen production changes by balancing demand and capacity and generating realistic production schedules.

The Agile Supply Chain model places an emphasis on flexibility since a business may have a particular requirement at any particular time and must be prepared to alter strategy accordingly. It is ideal for those with unpredictable demand or items that customers request. An agile supply chain responds immediately to demand rather than predicting it by waiting to see how much demand there is before producing the finished product.

Supply chain management is the management of the flow of goods and services. It includes supply planning, product planning, demand planning, sales and operations planning, and supply management. Moreover, it involves parties that are essential to the success of a supply chain, such as customers, distributors, wholesalers, retailers, and suppliers.

The process of obtaining the materials required to make a product is known as upstream production. It entails searching out and extracting raw resources. on the other hand, downstream is the process of producing and distributing products. Certified Logistics and Supply Chain professionals transform products in the upstream stage into finished products. Downstream processes also include the actual sale of that product to other businesses, governments, or private individuals..

Supply chain management is not entirely automated. However, it is believed to become more automated in the future. Quality control and stocktaking are two functions in the supply chain that can be automated, but, require human attention and focus in certain areas. Automation in supplychain lowers human failure rates and enhances a business' capacity to adhere to new and developing data compliance standards.

  • Procurement logistics: procuring raw materials and parts
  • Production logistics: includes materials management, distribution in factories, product management, shipping
  • Sales logistics: delivering products from warehouse to wholesalers, retailers, and consumers
  • Recovery logistics: recovering and recycling products, containers, and packaging
  • Recycling logistics: recovering and recycling empty cans, plastic bottles, and old papers

Supply chain management sourcing guarantees Certified professionals that the raw materials satisfy the requirements for making the goods. It also ensures that the prices paid for the goods are reasonable given the expectations of the market. In the event of unanticipated occurrences, sourcing guarantees the vendor has the flexibility to supply emergency supplies and that the vendor has a track record of delivering items on schedule and in good condition.

An air waybill is a contract for an air carrier to confirm receipt of a shipment. it contains an eleven-digit reference number for the shipment and lists the shipment's destination address, the carrier, the items, the consignor, and the consignee's (receiver's) contact information.

The continuous flow model is a traditional supply chain that is often used for mature supply chains with stable client demand profiles. It depends on the stability of supply and demand, with procedures planned to guarantee a constant pace and continuous flow of information and goods. Moreover, it relies on a company manufacturing the same product again and anticipating little volatility in consumer demand.

Break bulk refers to the practice of shipping products in individual parts as opposed to in a container. Break bulk cargoes are products that are transported in crates, bags, boxes, drums, and barrels without the use of containers. This procedure is often only utilized for large or heavy things as it is expensive and time-consuming.

Shipping status tool, lean inventory management tool, order processing tool, specialized freight handling tool, cloud storage solutions, warehouse management tool, supplier management tool, logistics analytics tool, demand forecasting tool, driver management tool, accounting tool, project collaboration tool, and system security tool. Logistics and Supply Chain Management professionals can further explain one or two of these tools.

A set of guidelines known as supply chain ethics was created as a result of the growing importance of ethics in supply chain management. An ethical supply chain focuses on the need for corporate social responsibility and works to create goods and services in a way that respects both the environment and its employees.

Storage, Warehousing, and Materials Handling, Packaging and Labeling, Inventory, Transportation, Delivery, and Reverse Logistics are the elements of Logistics. These elements ensure timely and cost-effective delivery to customers.

Packaging protects the products during shipping from the manufacturing facility to the retailer. So the packaging needs to be sturdy enough to withstand shipping and fit the measurements of the goods. It should have the appropriate sealing, packaging, and labeling. Unitization is all about safeguarding the product and ensuring safe transport.

The process of managing the movement of products into and out of a warehouse is called inventory. It focuses on the type of stock to hold, its location, and the appropriate amount to hold. It essentially ensures product availability, minimizes stockouts and lowers holding expenses.

Without transport, Goods cannot move from one level of a supply chain to another. Transport is the process of moving items from one place to another. It plays a critical role in supply chain logistics to ensure product delivery on time, which raises customer satisfaction.

A method of transporting goods or supplies into a business is known as "inbound logistics." It entails communicating with supply chain participants who are further upstream than the particular company. The process covers the actions needed to place an order, arrange delivery, store, move, and manage inbound goods.

Transport is a crucial element in Logistics. The different modes of transport in Logistics include road transport, train transport, cargo shipping, and air transport. Logistics and Supply Chain Management should select the appropriate transportation mode to ensure smooth and cost-effective supply chain operations.

Outbound logistics is the set of duties and operations involved in getting the product to the final customer. It is the process of transporting items from a manufacturer or vendor to a customer. The responsibility of these logistical duties falls under the service providers closest to the consumer in the supply chain.

The process of transporting items from the customer to the supply chain is known as reverse logistics. It assists in shielding companies against hazards related to product disposal and exchanges. Additionally, it also reduces expenses for marketing, disposal, tech support, tech repairs, administration, and quality assurance.

Inbound Logistics Activities include sourcing, purchasing, transportation, storage, inventory management, and quality control. These operations aid in the effective receiving and storage of components and raw materials needed for production.

The key roles involved in Outbound Logistics include Shipping Partners, Warehousing Partners, and Last-Mile Delivery Partners. These people ensure the efficient and effective delivery of products to their intended destinations.

Distribution centres, public warehouses, cooperative warehouses, private warehouses, bonded warehouses, climate-controlled warehouses, consolidated warehouses, smart warehouses, and government warehouses are the different types of warehouses.

Smart warehouses employ artificial intelligence (AI) to automate storage and fulfillment procedures. Raw material storage, transportation, weighing, and packing are all handled by AI. Since these warehouses are automated, they decrease human error and save on labor.

Deming Cycle/PDCA is a business management technique used to control and continuously improve products and processes. It seeks to continuously enhance processes. Additionally, it offers a straightforward and practical method for handling change and problem-solving. The four steps of this cycle are plan, do, check, and act.

The application of 5S to organizations facilitates the elimination of redundant tools and equipment, regular maintenance of equipment, workspace organization, downtime reduction, and quality improvement. All of these assist the organization in freeing up space within the structure and reducing waste from unnecessary motions.

Professionals in Logistics and Supply Chain Management first identify the issue and then brainstorm or discuss all potential reasons before outlining the main points. After creating the diagram, which should resemble a fish skeleton, add causes and consequences. Then, examine the data.

The principles of TQM are customer focus, employee involvement, integrated system, process-centric approach, systematic flow, continual efforts, fact-based decision-making, and relationship management.

Just in Time (JIT) logistics requires manufacturers to buy raw materials only if they are needed for production. Since organizations obtain items only as needed for the production process, this strategy helps reduce waste and boost efficiency while also lowering inventory expenses.

The five principles of effective warehouse management are to keep optimum stock levels, process sales orders speedily, control the movement and storage of materials, process associated transactions efficiently, and link warehouse management to sales order processing.

Products that are sensitive to temperature are kept in cold storage warehouses. Cold storage facilities maintain controlled climatic conditions to guarantee the safety of inventory and prevent losses prior to delivery of goods. Pharmaceutical businesses often utilize these warehouses.

Freight pricing is the cost of transporting a certain load between the two places. These rates can vary based on factors such as the distance traveled, transportation mode, cargo weight, volume, and dimensions.

Inventory classification facilitates more efficient inventory management, which lowers costs associated with excess inventory, stockouts, and unnecessary procurement and storage for organizations. As a result, there is less chance of financial loss and more profitability.

Principles for best warehouse design and operation are minimal touch of goods, one-way flow, triadic warehousing, inventory control, efficient labor, benchmarking, selecting the materials handling system, and knowing the data.

In a supply chain, the Seven Rights of Fulfilment guarantee the precise and effective fulfillment of customer demands. They are the Right Product, Right Customer, Right Time, Right Place, Right Condition, Right Quantity and Right Cost.

Material requirements planning (MRP) is the earliest computer-based inventory management system. MRP works on input such as Demand, Bill of materials, Inventory, and Master production schedule. Professionals should provide accurate and updated input.

Agile Supply Chain strategy assists businesses in promptly responding to unanticipated events, shifting market conditions, and customer demands. Demand forecasting, flexible inventory management, digitally centralized workflows, and a strong supplier management strategy are the four elements of an agile supply chain strategy.