What do they do?
Purchasing agents and officers purchase general and specialized equipment, materials and business services for use or for further processing by their establishment. They are employed throughout the public and private sectors.
Example Titles: Contract management officer, contracts officer, material management officer, procurement officer - View all titles
Main Duties - Purchasing agents and officers perform some or all of the following duties:
Purchase general and specialized equipment, materials or business services for use or for further processing by their establishment
Assess requirements of an establishment and develop specifications for equipment, materials and supplies to be purchased
Invite tenders, consult with suppliers and review quotations
Determine or negotiate contract terms and conditions, award supplier contracts or recommend contract awards
Establish delivery schedules, monitor progress and contact clients and suppliers to resolve problems
May hire, train or supervise purchasing clerks.
Purchasing agents and officers may specialize in the purchase of particular materials or business services such as furniture or office equipment.
A bachelor's degree or college diploma in business administration, commerce or economics is usually required.
Purchasing agents and officers purchasing specialized materials or business services may require a related university degree or college diploma. For example, a bachelor's degree or college diploma in engineering may be required for purchasers of industrial products.
A certificate in purchasing from the Purchasing Management Association of Canada may be required.
Previous experience as a purchasing clerk or as an administrative clerk may be required.
Progression to managerial positions is possible with experience.