Purchasing Managers Job Description video

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The smart shoppers of the business world are its purchasing managers. They plan and direct a company's purchasing activities, making sure buyers and purchasing agents get the best goods and services at the lowest price. They also ensure that the materials are bought in the right amounts and are on hand when they're needed. That keeps the flow of work on schedule and production lines humming. Purchasing managers often coordinate the work of a staff of buyers and agents, offering guidance and stepping in for the more complicated negotiations. They approve or reject suppliers' bids and review contracts. They keep track of market conditions and price trends relating to their product. There can be stress in this job -- especially when materials need to be acquired or replaced on short notice. A bachelor's degree in business administration and experience as a buyer or purchasing agent are minimum requirements for this management position. Professional certification is becoming increasingly important. Computer literacy is a must. Computer systems handle the routine purchasing tasks, allowing the manager to concentrate on the analytical aspects of the job. This is generally an office job with a 40-hour workweek. There’s a lot of responsibility, however, and that can translate to extra hours. You might also log some travel time, on trips to suppliers or trade shows.

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