Do you have an eye for quality and a keen understanding of what products will serve a business well? If so, the role of a buyer could be the right career move for you. Buyers select items from suppliers either for resale or for use within a company. This role handles all purchasing activities within a business and makes decisions that help the business run more efficiently.
As a buyer, you are responsible for deciding what items to purchase for your company. This can include raw materials for production needs, office supplies, merchandise for resale, and so on. In all cases, you need to identify the products that will benefit your business the most and negotiate a competitive price within budget. This will require you to have an excellent understanding of the business and the market you are serving.
On a daily basis, you will be responsible for researching and identifying new market trends and items to purchase. While doing this, you will also assess the company's sales as well as its inventory. You will identify what products are serving the company well in order to make more informed purchasing decisions. This can mean analyzing the productivity in an office, how shoppers are responding to products, and so on. In all cases, your main role is to procure quality products that improve the company's bottom line without going over budget.
Each business will have its own set of buyer interview questions. However, some common questions you might expect to be asked include:
Follow these guidelines while preparing your resume and cover letter for a buyer position:
As many companies require purchasing decisions for a variety of reasons, buyer jobs are likely to be in demand for the foreseeable future. However, the level of demand can vary between each industry and the purchasing requirements of each company. In addition, the health of the economy can also affect demand for buyer positions in the market. Therefore, it is a good idea to keep an eye on the local economy and make your decision according to the market.
In general, there are 3 main tasks/roles for the buying lifecycle: an initiator (who suggests the idea for purchase), a decision-maker (who makes the ultimate decision about a purchase) and the buyer (who handles the administration of the actual purchase). These tasks are usually hierarchical but can also be individually assigned areas of responsibility. Generalized types of buyer include:
There are also associated roles available that can offer both advancement and a lateral move should you be looking for new challenges:
Depending on the industry and company, you might also find the following types of more specialized buyer jobs available:
The average salary you can earn as a buyer in Canada is around $51,379 per year. For entry-level buyers, this can feature a starting rate of around $44,838 per year. More experienced buyers can earn up to $76,893 per year. These rates can depend on the industry you work for as well as the economy.
Top paying areas for buyers in Canada include: Alberta
Where you work as a buyer often depends on the industry you work for. You may be located in an office or commercial outlet, or you may be out in the field researching purchasing options. Your research will often be a combination of online work and in-person investigations. You may be required to travel to trade shows to investigate new products and initiate negotiations with suppliers. At times you may be required to work outside of normal work hours, in particular, if there is a deadline or a sale period.
Few companies will require you to have any formal qualifications to become a buyer. However, some companies may request a degree in a field related to their industry. In addition, a bachelor's degree in a field such as marketing, finance, business or mathematics will help you stand out from other candidates. Some companies offer apprenticeships that can give you experience in the role. In addition, there are buyer certifications available that can also help you improve your skills and help build your portfolio. Examples include Certified International Procurement Professional (CIPP), Certified International Advanced Procurement Professional (CPSM) and Member of Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply (CIPS). Some certifications may be available to you through on-the-job training programs and can help improve your employability overall.
Below are some of the most commonly asked questions about buyer jobs.
While many businesses do not require formal qualifications to become a buyer, there are some that may ask for an industry-related qualification. If so, a degree in a related field such as marketing will help improve your visibility. In addition, apprenticeships and certifications will also help improve your skills and help you stand out from the crowd.
Check through the listings on job boards for any open buyer positions, or try contacting the business directly. Try looking for any job offers through social media or even through personal contacts. In addition, you can visit our job seeker page for sales and marketing jobs to find the latest buyer positions available.
Look to see if there are any listings for buyer positions available in your area. If you are currently working for a company, you could also check to see if there are any positions available. In addition, keep an eye out for buyer jobs on our job seeker page. Once you find the buyer position that suits you, sign up with us so you can apply.
Keep checking social media pages and online job listings to find any buyer positions in your area. In addition, check to see if there are any opportunities for buyer jobs in your company. Sign up for our newsletter as well in order to be among the first to find buyer roles in your area.
As a buyer, you are responsible for purchasing materials, supplies or equipment for a business. This could be for the purposes of resale or for use within the company itself. In addition, you negotiate deals with suppliers, research products and take stock of the current inventory. You make decisions on what to purchase based on either quality or cost and keep an eye on changing market and industry trends.
In order to build strong working relationships with suppliers, you need to demonstrate honesty and trustworthiness, showing mutual respect during negotiations. These qualities will help you become a valuable asset for your company and will help you build valuable long-term relationships. In addition, being patient, making calculated decisions, and being aware of cultural differences will also help you when negotiating with suppliers.
Once you are established in the company, make sure you define your goals while also making sure they align with the company's objectives. Find out what the company needs and then start looking into products that best meet these needs. Once you have settled on the right products, begin negotiations with the supplier. Once a deal is reached, keep an eye on how the product performs for future review.
Applying for a buyer job is easy: create a Randstad profile and search our job offers for vacancies in your area. Then simply send us your CV and cover letter. Need help with your application? Check out all our job search tips here!