How one of WERC’s youngest members is maximizing his membership
At just 22, Brandon Jeffries has already figured out that a career in the supply chain industry is exactly what he wants to do. Which is why the Acworth, Georgia resident (a northwestern suburb of Atlanta) joined the Warehouse Education and Research Council (WERC) two years ago.
"I found WERC on the Internet when I was researching the logistics and supply chain management field," he recalls. "Because they’re a big association for professionals in the field, I wanted to join in order to learn more about career opportunities in the industry."
As a high-school graduate who is currently employed by a major international parcel and freight carrier—where he’s been a package handler for four years—Jeffries was drawn to the wealth of educational material available through WERC.org.
"I’ve taken several of WERC’s online courses and have attended some of the Atlanta WERCouncil’s events, including the tour of a Georgia Power facility," he says. "Not only was it a chance to see a different operation from where I work, but I met some really great people in the industry."
Jeffries has already put some of the knowledge he’s gained from WERC materials to use. Recently the victim of another worker’s hazardous material accident while on the job, he recalled a WERCSheet article covering personal safety procedures to follow during a Hazmat incident—which he promptly did. "I had just read that piece in the newsletter and knew exactly what to do," he explains.
On-the-job safety is an area in which Jeffries has a particular interest. Certified as a National Rifle Association (NRA) pistol safety instructor at the age of 16, he’s been teaching proper firearms handling and safety techniques since 2010. Additionally, he recently completed his Powered Industrial Truck Certification for forklift operation.
His goals for his WERC membership are to continue leveraging its educational resources, to connect with a mentor or two, and to find a position with greater responsibilities and more opportunities for career growth in a company smaller than his current employer.
Jeffries’ chances are good, says Brad Bossence, Chair of the Atlanta WERCouncil and Vice President of Customer Solutions at LeanCor Supply Chain Group. "WERC is an outstanding resource for young supply chain professionals looking to advance their careers, like Brandon," he notes.
"Many of our members are senior industry leaders, meaning our chapter events provide the opportunity for persons entering the industry to network with influential people in various industries," Bossence continues. "Leaders enjoy mentoring young professionals as well, and sometimes their goal is to meet prospective candidates at WERC events, so there is a mutual benefit for everyone."
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