Logistics Contract Manager

Logistics Contract Manager jobs

The contracts that logistics companies have with their customers and suppliers are key to the efficient and profitable running of the business. Contracts can be thought of in two ways: the signed pieces of paper that the two parties have, the result of much thrashing at the negotiating table; and the relationship the two parties have as a business entity – i.e. an account.

The contract manager will be in charge of both aspects. He or she will be involved with tendering and will be present at the negotiations between the logistics firm and potential customers. Sometimes contracts are negotiated in one set of prevailing conditions but as time goes by and conditions change, their profitability might suffer for either party. The contract manager will need to be open to renegotiations, and must work to ensure that there is reasonable scope for such alterations in the initial negotiations.

Once contracts are agreed and up and running, the manager will monitor their day to day operation and ensure that all is running smoothly. Any issues with the customer will need to be dealt with by the contract manager. It is important to strike a balance between keeping good clients happy and maximising profitability.

The skills required

The contract manager will probably have a team under him or her, for example account managers and finance staff who will deal with the day to day contact with the customers. They will also have regular contact with the logistics team itself and head office who will be steering the company and instructing the contract manager on budgets etc. For these reasons, the contract manager will need to have excellent communication and people management skills.

A good understanding of the negotiating, contract drafting and contract realisation stages will stand the contract manager in good stead. Any previous experience of running a department or dealing with contracts will help. The job can also be a step up the career ladder for an experience account manager, too. The role comes with a good deal of responsibility and the ongoing profitability of the department and company will be in his or her hands.

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