Unbroken chains: This WMG alumna is ensuring deliveries reach online customers on time
“It’s about putting the right resources in the right place in the most efficient way.”
No one predicted that the pandemic would trigger toilet roll shortages. Images of empty shelves underline how handling uncertainty – such as customers suddenly panic-buying – comes with the territory for supply chain and logistics managers like Sofia Duarte.
“Behind it all, there’s a professional trying to organise everything,” says the 28-year-old who won a Chevening Scholarship to study at WMG.
“It’s about putting the right resources in the right place in the most efficient way. Who could have foreseen people were going to stockpile toilet paper? In supply chain management, you have to take unpredictability into account.”
Crediting WMG for putting her on the path to success, Sofia has already held a management position overseeing a team of 100 employees at Amazon which she describes as a popular and attractive company for graduates.
Her MSc in Supply Chain and Logistics Management opened the door to securing a management role at one of Amazon's largest warehouses in Europe.
A key lesson from Sofia’s WMG teachers was to plan for the best but also for the unexpected. Being in charge of packing at Amazon required Sofia and her team to get items out to meet strict timescales. Thinking on her feet was essential. “Machines do away with monotonous steps. But they can break down in the middle of a shift for several hours. Things don’t usually go to plan.”
On the WMG course, Sofia took part in exercises with her classmates aimed at recreating situations they might face in the real world. These scenarios were designed to be applied in many different ways and with deadlines attached, she says.
Her view is the modules were "very well planned and paced" with a lot of thought put into bringing them to life and making them feel current. The blend of practical exercises and theoretical study makes the WMG courses very unique and prepares WMG graduates for the world of work.
After a business administration degree, she worked for a fair-trade organisation to gain experience before her MSc. This meant the advice from ‘industry-hardened’ professionals made the course even more enjoyable, according to Sofia.
WMG students come from many different backgrounds. In Sofia’s case, she holds multiple nationalities – Uruguayan, Brazilian and Italian – and has three passports to match. Now based in Germany, Sofia is about to embark on a new role but one day wants to run her own business.
For this citizen of the world, the horizon is without limits.