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Purchasing Officer Apprenticeships

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Helping you find a career as a Purchasing Officer

The Purchasing Officer is in charge of buying goods for the company to use and sell. The responsibilities of a purchasing officer also include: sourcing out suppliers, reviewing product quality and negotiating contracts. The purchasing officer makes sure the goods are not damaged.

Purchasing officers can be found everywhere, including retail stores and food chains.


What does a Purchasing Officer do?
A purchasing officer is important to the supply chain of a company. They buy the goods to sell on but also make sure the firm does not under or over order. A typical day for a purchasing officer will be:

  • Comparing offers from different suppliers

  • Researching and locating vendors (people that are offering something for sale)

  • Interviewing both suppliers and vendors

  • Agreeing on a contract

  • Negotiating prices

  • Keeping track of goods ordered and delivered

  • Controlling the purchasing department

  • Interviewing and hiring staff

  • Managing staff training

  • Preparing reports on the purchases

  • Attending trade shows to stay up to date with trends

Skills & interests required for a Purchasing Officer
A purchasing officer needs to be good with numbers, able to identify the best prices for the right goods. They will need to work with a blend of different suppliers and vendors, so relationship development skills will be important.
- Ability to Work Under Pressure
- Commercial Awareness
- Decision Making
- Financial Reporting
- Microsoft Office
- Negotiation
- Public Speaking
- Research skills
- Supply Chain
- Time Management
What hours does a Purchasing Officer typically do?
A purchasing officer typically works standard office hours, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Like in any industry, they might be expected to work overtime to meet occasional deadlines. If they work for a multinational company, they may be expected to arrive early or stay late in order to make calls to countries in different time zones.
What environment is a Purchasing Officer based in?
An office. Occasionally a warehouse, retail store or production facility.
How much does a Purchasing Officer travel?
A purchasing officer will need to travel to meet with suppliers.
How much does a Purchasing Officer get paid?
A purchasing assistant or a graduate entering at a junior level position with no previous experience of buying will earn between £20,000 to £25,000 per annum.

The national average salary of the purchasing officer is £36,059.

Senior managers and purchasing directors can expect to earn between £50,000 and £100,000.
What qualifications does a Purchasing Officer need?
While many employers prefer their applicants for purchasing officer positions to hold a university degrees, there are apprenticeship routes available.

Most employers expect applicants to become members of The Chartered Institute for Procurement and Supply (CIPS). If you are thinking of becoming a purchasing officer, then try taking a CIPS accredited apprenticeship.
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