Purchasing Managers

Description

Plan, direct, or coordinate the activities of buyers, purchasing officers, and related workers involved in purchasing materials, products, and services. Includes wholesale or retail trade merchandising managers and procurement managers.

Tasks

  • Represent companies in negotiating contracts and formulating policies with suppliers.
  • Direct and coordinate activities of personnel engaged in buying, selling, and distributing materials, equipment, machinery, and supplies.
  • Interview and hire staff, and oversee staff training.
  • Locate vendors of materials, equipment or supplies, and interview them to determine product availability and terms of sales.
  • Prepare and process requisitions and purchase orders for supplies and equipment.
  • Develop and implement purchasing and contract management instructions, policies, and procedures.
  • Maintain records of goods ordered and received.
  • Participate in the development of specifications for equipment, products or substitute materials.
  • Analyze market and delivery systems to assess present and future material availability.
  • Resolve vendor or contractor grievances, and claims against suppliers.
  • Control purchasing department budgets.
  • Review, evaluate, and approve specifications for issuing and awarding bids.
  • Review purchase order claims and contracts for conformance to company policy.
  • Administer online purchasing systems.
  • Prepare reports regarding market conditions and merchandise costs.
  • Prepare bid awards requiring board approval.
  • Arrange for disposal of surplus materials.

Knowledge

Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Mathematics
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
English Language
Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Clerical
Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
Personnel and Human Resources
Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.
Computers and Electronics
Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Skills

Persuasion
Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
Management of Financial Resources
Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.
Negotiation
Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
Management of Personnel Resources
Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
Monitoring
Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Coordination
Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Social Perceptiveness
Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Active Learning
Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Writing
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Abilities

Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Deductive Reasoning
The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Written Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Fluency of Ideas
The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
Category Flexibility
The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

Work Activities

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others
Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates
Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems
Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
Monitoring and Controlling Resources
Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
Coaching and Developing Others
Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.
Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Work Context

Telephone
How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?
Electronic Mail
How often do you use electronic mail in this job?
Face-to-Face Discussions
How often do you have to have face-to-face discussions with individuals or teams in this job?
Contact With Others
How much does this job require the worker to be in contact with others (face-to-face, by telephone, or otherwise) in order to perform it?
Indoors, Environmentally Controlled
How often does this job require working indoors in environmentally controlled conditions?
Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results
How do the decisions an employee makes impact the results of co-workers, clients or the company?
Frequency of Decision Making
How frequently is the worker required to make decisions that affect other people, the financial resources, and/or the image and reputation of the organization?
Freedom to Make Decisions
How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?
Work With Work Group or Team
How important is it to work with others in a group or team in this job?
Spend Time Sitting
How much does this job require sitting?

Interests

Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Work Style

Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Leadership
Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.

Work Values

Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.
Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.

Lay Titles

Buyer
Circuit Rider
Circuit Walker
Commissary Superintendent
Commodity Manager
Contract Administrator
Contract Coordinator
Contract Manager
Contracting Officer
Contracts Specialist
Demand Planner
Director of Materials
Director of Purchasing
Director of Strategic Sourcing
Division Merchandise Manager (DMM)
General Merchandise Manager
Import Coordinator
Leasing Manager
Livestock, Grain, Cotton and Other Farm Products Purchasing Director
Material Manager
Materials Coordinator
Materials Manager
Merchandise Director
Merchandise Executive
Merchandise Manager
Merchandise Planner
Merchandising Manager
Procurement Agent
Procurement Manager
Procurement Officer
Procurement Services Manager
Property and Supply Officer
Purchasing Agent
Purchasing Analyst
Purchasing Coordinator
Purchasing Director
Purchasing Manager
Purchasing Officer
Purchasing Supervisor
Sourcing Manager
Sourcing Specialist
Supply Chain Manager
Top E-Merchant (Merchandise Manager)

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$48.16 hourly, $100,170 annual.
Employment (2008):
69,400 employees