Buyer

Industry:
Manufacturing
Last Updated:
April 27, 2023

Job Description Overview

A Buyer job description in the Manufacturing industry involves sourcing and buying materials or products needed for the production of goods. The Buyer ensures that materials are purchased at a reasonable cost, within budget, and delivered on time for production. They liaise with suppliers and negotiate contracts while maintaining good relationships to secure favorable pricing and terms. They also monitor supplier performance and quality, ensuring that the goods meet the required specifications. The Buyer also maintains an accurate inventory record and evaluates suppliers based on performance and financial stability. They keep up-to-date with market trends and identify opportunities to reduce costs and improve the supply chain process. Strong analytical skills, attention to detail, excellent communication, and negotiation skills are vital for success in this job. A Bachelor's degree in Business Administration or a related field is typically required for this position.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

A buyer in the manufacturing industry is responsible for:

  1. Purchasing materials and supplies required for production.
  2. Ensuring timely and cost-effective procurement of goods.
  3. Maintaining relationships with vendors and suppliers.
  4. Analyzing market trends to determine the most competitive prices.
  5. Negotiating with suppliers to secure better prices and terms.
  6. Developing and implementing procurement strategies.
  7. Managing inventory levels and ensuring adequate stock levels.
  8. Coordinating with other departments to ensure timely delivery of goods.
  9. Updating and maintaining purchasing records and data.
  10. Ensuring compliance with procurement policies and regulations.

Experience and Education Requirements

To become a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry, you'll typically need a mix of Education and Experience. A Bachelor's degree in Business or Supply Chain Management is usually preferred. However, some companies may accept a High School Diploma or GED if you have enough experience in Procurement, Purchasing, or Inventory management. Many employers also look for candidates with strong Communication, Negotiation, and Analytical skills. Experience using Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, Microsoft Excel, and other software programs is a plus. Additionally, internships or entry-level positions in Procurement or Logistics can provide valuable on-the-job training. Overall, a combination of Education and Experience is key to securing a job as a Buyer in Manufacturing.

Salary Range

As a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry, one can expect a salary range between $48,000 to $96,000 per year in the United States, depending on experience and location. In addition to the base salary, Buyers can receive bonuses, profit sharing, and commissions. The median annual wage for Buyers in 2020 was $69,600 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

In Canada, the salary range for a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry is between CAD 43,000 to CAD 87,000 per year. In the UK, the range is between £20,000 to £40,000 per year.

Sources:

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/buyers-and-purchasing-agents.htm#tab-5 
  • Payscale: https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Buyer/Salary 
  • Glassdoor: https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/buyer-salary-SRCH_KO0,5.htm

Career Outlook

A career as a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry is expected to grow over the next five years due to the increasing demand for goods and services. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for purchasing managers and buyers in Manufacturing is projected to increase by 4% between 2019-2029. The growing need for companies to streamline their supply chains and reduce costs is also anticipated to impact the demand for Buyers in the industry positively. With automation and artificial intelligence entering the field, Buyers may require to equip themselves with digital skills and understand the implications of these technologies. Regardless, the job outlook for a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry is promising for the next few years.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What does a Buyer do in the Manufacturing industry?

A: A Buyer is responsible for sourcing and purchasing raw materials, supplies, and equipment for a manufacturing company.

Q: What qualities does a successful Buyer need?

A: A successful Buyer needs strong negotiation skills, attention to detail, good communication skills, and the ability to analyze data and make informed decisions.

Q: What are some typical tasks for a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry?

A: Typical tasks for a Buyer include sourcing and selecting suppliers, negotiating prices and contracts, managing inventory levels, and ensuring timely delivery of materials and supplies.

Q: What education or experience is required to become a Buyer in the Manufacturing industry?

A: A Bachelor's degree in a relevant field such as business or supply chain management, and experience in procurement or supply chain management is generally required for a Buyer position.

Q: What career advancement opportunities are available for Buyers in the Manufacturing industry?

A: Buyers can advance to management positions such as Purchasing Manager or Supply Chain Manager, or transition to related roles such as Procurement Analyst or Logistics Coordinator. Continuing education and professional certifications can also lead to career advancement.


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