Procurement specialists specialize in finding goods and services for businesses at the best price to ensure the businesses' continued functionality. This can include office supplies, inventory, and large scale purchases like real estate. These specialists are counted on to meet budgetary constraints and increase profitability.
Procurement specialists can range from entry level to senior level positions in a company. In entry level positions, they may issue purchase orders based on the requirements from manufacturing, operations or project management divisions within the company. They may also be required to assess the performance of suppliers in responding to demands, develop long term relationships, or terminate those who are detrimental to the well-being of the company.
Procurement specialists often serve in a support role in addition to their other duties. They assist in the preparation and analysis of contracts. They work closely with all areas of upper management, accounting departments, finance departments, as well as outside vendors. They most often work in a business office environment, during a typical Monday through Friday work week. Their hours are standard business hours, although special project time constraints may require working more than usual at times.
Most procurement specialists have a bachelor’s degree in business administration, accounting, finance or a related field. A master’s degree in these fields can make one a more desirable candidate. Procurement specialists are able to complete additional educational requirements to become a certified procurement professional (cpp), certified professional purchasing manager (cppm), and/or certified purchasing consultant (cppc). Most procurement specialists are expert negotiators, with some experience in the field prior to taking on this kind of role.
Procurement Specialist Tasks
- Write and analyze requisitions, invoices, supply requests and supply orders.
- Track and monitor inventory and needs to determine when to order or purchase new items.
- Negotiate with different suppliers for price, quality, timeliness and other factors.
- Expedite and liaise with suppliers to ensure timely delivery of goods.