Procurement management is the practice of planning and directing the activities of purchasing agents who buy materials needed for the operations of a company or organization. Procurement management also involves oversight of the supplier evaluation and purchase negotiation process.
Procurement managers typically report to the operations manager or general manager of their company or organization. There may be multiple procurement managers working side by side, each overseeing a particular area of need. They work with other operational planning staff to analyze the material needs of the organization and create a procurement plan, which they carry out with the help of purchasing agents and other staff.
Most careers in procurement management require a bachelor’s degree and substantial work experience as a purchasing agent or logistician. Employers in the field look for strong professional skills in contract negotiation, contract administration and contract writing, as procurement managers are often closely involved in putting together purchase agreements with suppliers. Practical managerial and leadership skills are also important.
Positions in the field of procurement management carry several alternate job titles, including purchasing manager, sourcing director and materials manager, among others. Procurement managers work in manufacturing, wholesaling and retailing industries. The government is also a large employer of procurement managers.