Lead Buyer

Lead Buyer jobs

The lead buyer in a manufacturing company is a role that comes with huge responsibility. He or she will need to ensure the steady flow of raw materials, components or other critical materials reaches the factory floor to create a seamless, endless supply, ensuring there is never any downtime through lack of availability. This will mean keeping an eye on several strands at once, such as warehouse levels (making sure they are not too high as well as too low), availability on the market of the materials in question and the expected capacity and productivity of the factory (especially where seasonal effects are present).

They will also be in charge of keeping the costs as low as possible, so the job will involve a good deal of making contact with suppliers and potential suppliers in order to strike deals with them. The lead buyer will usually have a set budget and keeping within it will sometimes require a good deal of creativity, thinking on one’s feet and negotiation.

Many lead buyers will head up a department of junior buyers or buyers of certain categories of supplies, so management skills will be required, rounding off a set of abilities that combine to make the lead buyer one of the key employees of a manufacturing enterprise. The sway the lead buyer holds of the company’s profits cannot be overestimated, and for this reason lead buyers will be drawn from candidates with excellent experience of buying, preferably at a managerial level.

The skills required

Successful lead buyers will be people who can absorb themselves entirely into the operation of a manufacturing company. They will need to be able to know exactly what supplies need to come in through the factory gates at any time and how much they cost – and they will have a hand in determining these facts too. They will be expected to hit the ground running and make a positive change to the company from day one, sourcing materials and goods, driving down costs and arranging timely delivery.

Needless to say, this is a role that will suit not only people who can handle pressure, but also those who thrive on it. When overseeing a team of buyers, it’s important to deal with them in a courteous and positive manner even when things aren’t running to plan.

Superb communication and management skills will round up the competencies required of the lead buyer. It’s a role not everyone will be able to rise to, even those with extensive procurement experience. There will definitely need to be the instinct to make things happen and to act on it.

Latest vacancies

LATEST

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