Logistics has long been a male-dominated industry, with very few women at any point along the supply chain. The truth is though, women are an incredibly valuable asset in the logistics talent pool, and companies eager to obtain top talent should be tapping into this largely ignored resource.
Women in Logistics
In 2017, approximately 22% of the 125 million people working in logistics were women. Today, that number has almost doubled, but there is still work to be done.
As a whole, leaders in the industry can support the charge by creating environments that are more conducive to diversity. College programs need to actively recruit female candidates for majors at all points of the supply chain, especially in executive-level programs. The wave has been slow in coming, but there is evidence that these things are indeed being done – and the movement is growing.
Quantifying the State of the Industry
An estimated 33% of students majoring in logistics-focused programs are women. However, those women pursuing executive-level logistics education only total around 5% which is something that many colleges are trying to change. Several universities are creating programs that are specifically designed to attract women to logistics majors with an emphasis on C-suite programs.
Currently, about 41% of the supply chain workforce is comprised of women, according to a 2021 Gartner survey. That number is up slightly from 39% in 2020. The study also showed that 15% of those holding leadership roles in logistics are women, which has decreased from 17% in 2020. It is encouraging though that these findings represent the highest percentages of women in logistics since the survey’s first edition in 2016.
As awareness increases regarding the lack of women in logistics, several organizations are rising to the top, providing support and valuable resources. Women in Logistics (WIL) provides both women and men in logistics resources for employment as well as education. The Organization of Women in International Trade (OIT) is another strong supporter. Its mission is to foster the advancement of women in international trade and business. They have a massive and growing network that supports employment, advancement, and education for women who seek careers in logistics and associated trades.
OL USA maintains a strong commitment to supporting women who are pursuing a career in logistics and who are paving the way for those coming behind them. We celebrate our women executives and professionals within our company and across the industry. Equality is coming.
Change is coming, and it is up to the leaders in the industry to lead the charge here as well.
Companies need to do more to attract more women to the logistics industry. This starts with creating a corporate culture where equality is celebrated, and women are allowed to thrive. This means promoting bold leadership of both men and women as well as establishing an environment that maintains autonomy, empowerment, and respect as its infrastructure.
OL USA celebrates women in logistics, and we pride ourselves on being the alternative to other carriers – the better, more progressive choice.
And it shows.