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Purchasing manager

Alternative titles for this job include Procurement manager

Purchasing managers buy equipment, goods and services for their company or organisation.

Average salary (a year)

£28,000 Starter


£60,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 42 a week

You could work

evenings occasionally

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Purchasing manager

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly


There is no set entry route to become a purchasing manager, though it may be useful to study for a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in a subject like:

  • business studies
  • logistics and procurement
  • purchasing and supply
  • marketing
  • supply chain management

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information


You could start as a trainee purchasing manager by doing a:

  • Procurement and Supply Assistant Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship
  • Commercial Procurement and Supply Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship
  • Senior Procurement and Supply Chain Professional Level 6 Degree Apprenticeship

These can take between 2 and 3 years to complete.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More Information


You may be able to join a company as an administrator or assistant in a purchasing department. You could work your way up as you get more experience.

You might also take professional qualifications while working, through an organisation like the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply.

Direct Application

You can apply directly for jobs if you have several years' experience in buying and purchasing. If you have a degree, you may be able to join a graduate management training scheme.

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply for professional development training and industry contacts, which could help with your career.

Further information

You can get more advice about becoming a purchasing manager from the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • business management skills
  • customer service skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • analytical thinking skills
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • maths knowledge
  • persuading and negotiating skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As a purchasing manager, you could:

  • identify what goods, services and equipment are needed
  • draw up tenders and assess bids from potential suppliers
  • present any legal or commercial risks to senior leadership teams
  • identify savings, negotiate prices and agree contracts with suppliers
  • monitor the performance of contracted suppliers
  • manage a purchasing team and make sure rules are followed correctly

Working environment

You could work in an office.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

As your career develops, you could work towards becoming a Member of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (MCIPS). This is internationally recognised and can lead to chartered status.

With experience, you could apply for senior roles like head of department, specialise in a particular industry or become a purchasing consultant.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Level 4 Commercial Procurement and Supply Apprenticeship

  • Wage: £12,480 to £22,308 a year Annually

Procurement and Supply Assistant Apprenticeship in Birmingham

  • Wage: £19,000 a year Annually
  • Location: Birmingham Business Park, Birmingham

Courses In England


  • Start date: 01 September 2024
  • Location: Redditch

CIPS Level 5 Advanced Diploma in Procurement and Supply

  • Start date: 16 September 2024
  • Location: Darlington

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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