Interview with a Procurement Manager

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The role of procurement manager varies from one business to another, but in every case is a vital one – leading the procurement activity to drive savings and efficiency.

We spoke to a senior procurement manager to discover what their day-to-day job entails.

What does a typical day involve for you?

The average day will include analysis of spend in an area or category, reviewing the relevant supplier contracts, identifying cost reduction opportunities, engaging with internal stakeholders on their plans and working with them to formulate strategies to achieve the desired savings. In my current role I am also responsible for a team, so improving skills and capability is a daily consideration. I will regularly analyse our processes to identify ways we can improve efficiency, and communicate our strategy and savings to key internal stakeholders.

What do you like best about being a procurement manager?

Two things really – generating savings and seeing how procurement adds real value to the organisation, feeling like you’re part of the bigger picture, is certainly one. But also for me it’s about making sure a succession plan is in place to allow me to progress my own career.

What skills do you find useful?

Although procurement jobs may seem to be all about numbers and analysis to an outsider, the real key to success in my opinion is people skills. As a procurement manager you are constantly required to build and maintain relationships with suppliers, stakeholders, and internally. It’s essential to be a confident negotiator and communicator, as it really affects your success.

What advice would you give someone looking for a procurement manager job?

MCIPS qualification is certainly useful, but personally I didn’t follow that path – instead my progression has involved proving myself first as a buying assistant, then a procurement officer, in various different organisations. Each role gives you the opportunity to learn, change and achieve – even if it’s entry level or interim. Just make the most of it.

Find your next role with Portfolio Procurement

At Portfolio Procurement we specialise in executive and manager level recruitment for jobs in procurement, sourcing and category management.

Browse the vacancies we currently have available, or contact us on 020 7650 3191 for assistance finding permanent or interim procurement jobs.