Pasted below is feedback from a former student who works at TACOM (government SCM jobs).
These jobs do require U.S. citizenship and this is a unionized workforce. Yes, unions only make up around 10-13% of America’s workforce and most of them are actually government employees.
Pasted below is feedback from a former student who works at TACOM (who often has several job openings in Warren, MI). This sounds like a very good career path and could be a great match for several of you. Notice his comment on TACOM having very little turnover. That speaks volumes.
Also, my perspective on jobs that too many supply chain students do not give enough serious consideration to…
More from a former student…
I think to sum things up; there are very few supply chain management employees that leave TACOM once they are hired the turnover rate is extremely low. Most people are very happy to be here!
-Excellent Work/Life Balance
-Defined Career Path Fast Tracks Employees to Competitive Salary
-Holiday’s & Leave Schedule work out to great to support that work life balance.
-Excellent atmosphere a team working together to deliver Soldiers parts. High level of integrity and behavior required.
-Plenty of opportunity to change jobs or roles. Most people start in forecasting and planning in SAP.
-Flexible Schedules/Work from home (Telework)
The few people that leave I find are due to our location and the weather here. Detroit was always drag but in recent years has really come a long way. You are never going to make millions here, but the pay scale is very competitive.
This is a great place to work if you are good with Michigan and Metro Detroit!
Chief, Carrier Group M113, AMPV & OSV
Combat Maneuver & Recovery PSID
6501 E. 11 Mile Road,
Warren, MI 48397-5000
From another former student that has a SCM government job:
Hello Sime, I had a few minutes so I listened to the Government portion of your video while working. I think you make some great points! One thing I want to add is that in my job at Army Contracting Command (ACC) – Detroit Arsenal, we are salaried but we never have to work any unpaid overtime. They are very conscious about our time. In fact the flexibility is great – we have the ability to work a few different compressed work schedules including a 4 day 10 hour per day work week. I am actually going to be switching to that soon as my wife and I are expecting. You’re also right on the mapping out your pay/future point. The pay scale is posted in the internet https://www.federalpay.org/gs/locality/detroit and so it’s very transparent.
There are opportunities for advancement for those who are interested but it is gradual. Just a bit on my story- ACC likes to hire in new graduates and those without experience at the GS 7 level but the plan is to move to a GS 9 after 1 year and then a GS 11 after 1 more year. I applied to such a position but was able to negotiate to start at a GS 11 immediately. It was a small pay cut in comparison to what I was earning at a local Auto OEM but I’d definitely do it over again. I am also much closer to the office and family than I was previously. The work load is much more manageable and the current compressed work schedule I am on (8 9Hr Days, 1 8Hr Day, 1 Regular Day Off per pay period) is fantastic! There is also a pension system and 401K match. You made another great point on the structure as well – we are Governed by the FAR and DFARS regulations but there is always room to write and negotiate contracts in a creative way to add value. So, to kind of recap: a college grad might hire in as a contract specialist (see description below) at a Level 7 Step 1 ~$48,000 but after 1 year the pay increases to about $60K (Level 9 Step 1) and by the end of the 2nd year it’s up to $70K (Level 11 Step 1).
Another thought on government jobs:
A lot of companies in industry (in the private sector) do business with the government at the local, state, and federal levels. In other words, the government is a major customer for numerous companies out there (especially Fortune 500 types). The contracts when the government is your customer is a different animal. They are very unique. For example, there are strict protocol, policies, and procedures that must be followed. Imagine how marketable you would be to companies that do business with the government if you actually had government work experience on the SCM side? In other words, you could help a company get and keep government business because you might understand the unique nature of working with the government. There are not a lot of people out there saying they know in detail how to manage government business and contracts. This is another selling point of working in SCM with the government. I know a lot of people that used to work for the Department of Defense (DOD) that now work for military contractors such as Boeing and Raytheon. Do you see the synergy and connection and why those companies might pay a premium for those skill sets and work experiences?
Would you personally be OK with a government job in SCM?
Note, you would be a part of this very large union:
Thank you. Sime
Dr. Sime (Sheema) Curkovic, Ph.D., Professor, Operations/Supply Chain
Western Michigan University, Haworth College of Business