Distribution Manager

Distribution Manager

If you have great negotiation skills, an interest in transportation and enjoy working in a team then a career as a Distribution Manager could be for you.

In this profile:

Career Overview

Distribution Managers see to the shipment of large quantities of goods. They monitor inventory, work with teams to meet customer demand. Distribution Managers make sure that the correct products get delivered to the correct location at the correct time. They plan and facilitate the entire process.

They use their leadership skills, together with their time management and commercial awareness and numeracy skills to excellently transport goods from the food industry to the electronics industry.

Required School Subjects

You will need to have taken the following subjects at high school:

  • English (Home Language or First Additional Language)

Recommended subjects:

  • Computer Applications Technology (CAT)

Recommended Institutions and APS

The following are highly recommended institutions to study Distribution Management:

Calculate your own APS Below

Required Qualification/s

Minimum required qualification is a Bachelor’s Degree in either Business Management or Distribution Management. However, Higher National Diplomas are acceptable as well.  There is generally additional training provided by companies once hired, regarding how warehouse and distribution centers operate. Years of experience is a huge plus.

Required Skills

You will need to have the following skills to succeed as a Distribution Manager:

  • Leadership
  • Commercial Awareness and Numeracy
  • Interpersonal
  • Problem-solving
  • IT Skills
  • Organisational Skills
  • Communication
  • Analytical
  • Time Management
  • Sound Decision Making
  • Adaptability and Accountability

Where can you work

Distributions Managers can work in many different industries in both private and public sectors. The following are some industries where Distribution Managers can seek employment.

    • Retail Companies
    • Aviation Organisations
    • Rail Providers
    • Engineering Firms

Working Hours

Distribution Managers typically work shift hours, which vary between organisations. Shifts are divided between day and evening shifts and may include working over the weekend. In most organisations, managers don’t work more than 60 hours a week. However, in rare incidents which require immediate attention, managers may be required to work after hours to address the matter which needs to be addressed.


The current salary estimated is between R147 000 and R870 000, with the average being R348 932. Bonuses, commissions and profit sharing are some inclusions that may be part of the salary package but it all depends on the organisation you’ll be working for and the experience that you will have acquired. Factors that influence how much the salary package will be include experience, level of qualification and where the organisation is located.

What to Expect

Here are a few things you can expect from a career as a Distribution Manager:

  • There is a frequent amount of walking involved, maintaining healthy physical health is key
  • Distribution Managers work closely with warehouse supervisors – being a team player is helpful in the success of executing the job
  • Managers don’t only work in offices but in warehouses as well and in some cases outdoors
  • Occasional travel may be required and depending on the size of the organisation, international travel is a common occurrence

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