A procurement manager gets the materials, supplies and services the company needs for its daily operations. You will be negotiating with vendors and other business owners, reviewing proposals and crafting contracts. You will see to it that the materials are obtained on time and at a reasonable price. The things and services you buy will depend on the organization you are working for. This could mean purchasing raw materials needed by a company to manufacture its products or even getting in touch with a headhunting firm to fill the vacant positions of your company.
Part of your responsibility lies in coordinating the purchasing activities of the organization. If it is a small company, there’s a big chance that you will be responsible for all procurement activities. However, if you are working for a larger firm where each department can make their own purchases, you will have to make sure that everyone follows the organization’s policies regarding procurement. This is to ensure that the company is protected from legal claims and will be able to get quality materials and services at the best price.
As a procurement manager, it is part of your duty supervise the employees under you. You will see to it that the daily operations of the procurement department are running smoothly and that the minor troubles are immediately and successfully addressed. You are also tasked with conducting performance reviews of the different departments based on such metrics as the value of the purchases they have made, the savings they have made for the company because of buying decisions and their efficiency based on the turnaround time and quality of their purchases.
Additional tasks that you may be asked to perform include finding new suppliers and talking with them to determine if they have what your company needs. You will be asked to create and keep track of contracts and ensure that the supplier is keeping its end of the deal in terms of the volumes delivered and the delivery dates. You will also need to participate in trade shows and events so you are updated on the latest trends of your industry.
To succeed in this profession, you will need to be analytical since you will be scrutinizing the offers of potential suppliers to determine who will be giving your company the highest quality items at the best price. You will also need to possess excellent negotiation skills since you will be talking with various vendors to iron out the final details of a contract. You also need to have intimate knowledge about the products offered by your company and which ones in your inventory are selling very well. This will enable you to make informed decisions when choosing the products to buy.
Why Become A Procurement Manager
The job of a procurement manager is typically reserved for the person who already has at least five years of experience in the area of buying materials and services for a company. Thus, this is supervisory position that is worth getting promoted into. The responsibilities of procurement managers directly impact the profitability of the firm, making this position a very stressful but gratifying one. It becomes fulfilling if you know that you have done your best in seeking only reputable suppliers that are able to give quality products at the best price. Moreover, nothing is more satisfying for someone who loves the art of negotiation than to be able to do this on a regular basis. As a procurement manager, you will be given the opportunity to convince and persuade vendors and suppliers to give you what you want at your own terms. On the more practical aspect, one reason to become a procurement manager is that it pays very well.
Procurement Manager Work Environment
Procurement managers can be found in various organizations, although they mostly work in companies operating in the manufacturing industry. They are also hired by companies engaged in wholesale and retail trading as well as those that are in the business of managing companies and enterprises.
The work is usually fulltime and often done in the comfort of one’s office. However, there may be times when travel is required for purchases that need to be made outside of the United States. Due to the demands of this position, it is common to put in more than forty hours of work each week.
Procurement Manager Salary
The Occupational Employment and Wages report of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics does not gather salary data specifically for the job title of a procurement manager. However, it does have the salary information of purchasing managers which performs similar roles as those done by procurement managers. The mean annual wages of purchasing managers is $109,640. They receive much higher pay than buyers and purchasing agents who earn $61,900 each year.
Procurement Manager Career Outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics does not have job outlook projections for procurement managers. However, it does have the employment rate of purchasing managers, buyers and purchasing agents. These occupations are set to experience a four percent employment rate in the period covering 2012 to 2022. This is slower than the national average of all job types but it should be kept in mind that the growth will depend on the industry where the procurement manager will be working in. Organizations will continue to hire them to plan their buying activities. However, the best job prospects will go to those who have experience and possess advanced educational degrees.
Procurement Manager Degree
Procurement managers are typically promoted from the ranks since this is a position that requires a combination of experience and education. At the entry level position of a purchasing agent, a candidate possessing only a high school diploma may be hired and then trained on the job. However, employers who are looking for purchasing managers or procurement managers normally require applicants to at least have a bachelor’s degree, preferably one that is related to business or accounting. Manufacturing companies even want procurement managers to have a master’s degree in these fields or a degree that relates to engineering or economics. For top level positions, at least five years of experience in a related function is required.
Certification can greatly enhance a procurement manager’s credentials. For example, the American Purchasing Society offers the Certified Purchasing Professional and Certified Professional Purchasing Manager credentials which can be obtained after successfully passing various requirements.