Purchasing managers, also sometimes known as procurement managers, and purchasing administrators manage the buying in of goods and services for organisations. The work includes liaising with departmental managers to determine their requirements, sourcing suppliers of goods and services and negotiating contracts.
Purchasing managers will need to consider factors such as price, quality, service support and reliability when selecting suppliers. They will need to develop wide market knowledge and build up a network of contacts.
In larger organisations purchasing managers may be part of a purchasing department made up of senior and junior buyers and administrators. In a small organisation, their role may be combined with other duties and they will usually be supported by general administration staff.
Purchasing managers work 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday. Where deadlines must be met, hours could be longer.
The work is office-based. In some jobs managers travel to other parts of the UK and even Europe. A driving licence is essential.
To be a purchasing manager you should:
Purchasing managers are employed throughout the UK by manufacturers, commercial companies, local authorities and other public bodies such as the Civil Service and the National Health Service. Large organisations have specialist buying departments. Smaller organisations might have purchasing work done by one person or just a few people.
There is a shortage of suitably qualified people for purchasing manager jobs.
Purchasing managers may become purchasing directors or heads of department. They might need to move to gain promotion.
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