Purchasing - Graduate Jobs and Internships

Buyer/Purchaser

Are you interested in becoming a professional buyer? In this section you can find more information about what the occupation involves along with examples of the universities offering programmes that will give you access to this profession.

What are the characteristics of this job?

Professional buyers or retail buyers are continuously searching for the best compromise when buying products or services for the company they work for. What is their objective? To negotiate the best prices for quality products, working to strict deadlines. Buyers must, most importantly, increase their company's turnover figure. The procurement function normally appears in a company once it has around 50 to 100 employees.

Working in mass distribution or industry, buyers start by prospecting and selecting suppliers who cater to the company's needs. After this step, known as sourcing (a phase of researching and evaluating suppliers), comes the negotiation of the proposition. The buyer then monitors the suppliers they have worked with in the hope of maintaining a business relationship. A buyer's goal is not simply to get the lowest prices possible, but to convince and work closely with suppliers.

Companies recruiting buyers include: Asda, BBC, Coors, Kimberly-Clark, KFC, HSBC, Amazon, Thomas Cook, Coca Cola, Clarks, Costa, Tesco, Crown Paints, The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Nationwide, Philips, WHSmith, The University of Warwick, McLaren Racing, Sky, Vodafone, Bentley and many others.

Similar occupations

A Buyer can work in many different sectors such as industry (companies in the automotive industry, construction and fashion are most likely to recruit Buyers), services, distribution and even the public sector. Jobs that are similar to Buyer include the following: Chief Procurement Officer (CPO), Warehouse Manager, Dispensing Optician, Retail Merchandiser, Retail Manager, and Purchasing Manager.

What skills are needed for this occupation?

  • Strong analytical skills
  • Negotiating skills
  • Ability to network and influence others
  • Teamworking and interpersonal skills
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Numeracy skills and IT proficiency
  • Organisation and time management skills
  • Ability to multitask
  • Ability to cope with pressure and make important decisions
  • Capability to meet strict deadlines and reach targets
  • Motivation and determination
  • Entrepreneurial spirit
  • Commercial awareness
  • Creative and confident
  • Leadership attributes
  • Passion for retail
  • Adaptable

What qualifications are necessary?

A qualification in a relevant retail or business subject if preferred but it is a good idea to be specific to the sector you wish to work in from the outset, e.g. if you wish to work in the fashion industry then it would be preferential to have a bachelor's degree in Fashion Management or a similar discipline. Graduate programmes are also available to develop your skills and add to your work experience.

If you have no degree or related qualifications it is also possible to work your way up inside a company, however this path is much more competitive. Work experience is very important for any job, so it is highly advisable to gain as much work experience as possible in retail jobs before applying for higher positions.

Universities offering buying and merchandising programmes:

  • University of the Arts London
  • De Montfort University Leicester
  • University of Westminster
  • University of Central Lancashire
  • The University of Manchester
  • Southampton Solent University
  • University of Kent

Salary of a Buyer

A young graduate starting off as a buyer can expect to earn between £18,000 and £25,000, with salary increasing with experience. A senior buyer can expect to earn a salary anywhere between £55,000 and £70,000 per year.

You can find job, internship and work placement opportunities for purchasing by creating a profile on Wizbii.

41 jobs found

ENGIE are recruiting for a Graduate Trainee Buyer to be based in Waltham Abbey, EN9 1DX. This is a permanent full time role working Monday to Friday 8:30 - 17:00. On offer is a competitive salary an...

  • By Adecco UK Limited Worcester

  Location Worcester, Worcestershire ·  Salary £ 25000 - £ 35000 / Year ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Buyer / Puchasing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain ·...

  • By Adecco UK Limited Evesham

  Location Evesham, Worcestershire ·  Salary £ 25000 - £ 35000 / Year ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Buyer / Puchasing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain · ...

  Location London, Greater London ·  Salary £13.26/Hour ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Procurement & Supply Chain ·  Job type Temporary ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain ·  Exter...

If you are searching for opportunities to start your career in the field of Supply Chain/ Procurement and gain knowledge and practical skills in a multinational environment, enroll for IBM Student Pro...

Our Procurement Department is seeking a confident and proactive Administrator to join their vibrant, close knit team. The Procurement Department is responsible for sourcing and managing goods and se...

  Location Slough, Berkshire ·  Salary £ 10 - £ 11 / Hour ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Customer Service ·  Job type Temporary ·  Industry Industrial and Manufacturing ·  External Refe...

  • By Adecco UK Limited Consett

  Location Consett, Durham ·  Salary £ 20000 - £ 23000 / Year ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Buyer / Puchasing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain ·  External...

Role area Digital · Contract type Permanent · Job reference HRGDJ294643 · Location Milton Keynes MK9 2NW · Natural search remains the single largest source of traffic to Argos.co.uk...

Responsibilities Locating products. Negotiate pricing, recognize market trends and in-demand items. Developing and maintaining business relationships with Vendor Reps. This position interfaces intern...

Req ID: 113923 INTRODUCTION Founded in 1856, Burberry today remains quintessentially British, with outerwear at its core.  Digital luxury positioning and intensive focus on design innova...

ENGIE are recruiting for a Procurement Support Team member to be based at  SSC, Q3, Quorum Business Park, Newcastle NE12 8EX. This is a permanent full time role working 37.5 hours per week, Monday -...

  Location Rainham, Essex ·  Salary £ 30000 - £ 32000 / Year ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Buyer / Puchasing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain ·  External...

  • By Adecco UK Limited Brierley Hill

  Location Brierley Hill, West Midlands ·  Salary £ 22000 - £ 24000 / Year ·  Category Industrial & Manufacturing and Production - Manufacturing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Industrial and Ma...

  Location Chesterfield, Derbyshire ·  Salary £ 23000 - £ 25000 / Year ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Buyer / Puchasing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain · ...

  Location Swansea, Swansea ·  Salary £ 25000 - £ 26000 / Year ·  Category Procurement & Supply Chain - Buyer / Puchasing ·  Job type Permanent ·  Industry Procurement and Supply Chain ·  Externa...

ProcurementBuyer L'OréalPurchasing is committed to creating value for the business by thinking differently, challenging the status quo and supporting the corporate conscience. We work closely...

POSTING END DATE: 29/05/2018  ADVERTISED SALARY: 37819-45000 LOCATION: Ryton, Wetst Midlands The successful candidate for the above role will retain their current employer, i.e. if you are a Jagu...

ENGIE are recruiting for a Planner to be based at  The Quays, Salford, M50 3BF . This is a permanent full time role working Monday to Thursday 08:00 - 16:30 Friday 08:00 - 16:00. On offe...

ENGIE are recruiting for a Assistant Planner to be based at The Quays, Salford, M50 3BF. This is a permanent full time time role working Monday to Thursday 08:00 - 16:30 Friday 08:00 - 16:00. On off...

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