Purchasing Manager Interview Questions

The following set of instructions and guidelines will help you when interviewing the candidates for the job of a Purchasing Manager.

What is the role of a Purchasing Manager?

The duties of a Purchasing Manager, or more commonly known as the Procurement Manager is to procure goods and services for the organization’s use. A smaller business might choose to hire a single manager for dealing with procurement operations while larger businesses might hire a team of Procurers with a Procurement Manager to manage the team. Some industries require Procurement Managers to be relevant to the field of the company’s operations. In such case, you can also ask for certain certifications or prerequisite knowledge in the specific field. This ensures that the candidate is serious about pursuing a strong role in your company. Past experience in the field can also help assess a candidate’s abilities. Their main duty is to negotiate contracts as well as display some clever tactics that will help the company save money as well as maintain its quality. Or, if the company wishes to develop a separate procurement department then you will also have to evaluate their capabilities as a leader. Following questions will guide you through the interview process as well as help you in the selection of the best candidate. You can also modify these questions according to your company’s requirements.

Operational and Situational questions

  • Explain your actions, if one of your subordinate’s performance was below par.
  • Which factors will you consider while saving the cost for a project in a limited amount of time?
  • Elaborate on your course of action if any order is delayed which is critical to production and may stop it completely.
  • How would you handle it if you were delivered products that did not meet your required specifications?
  • If a certain department asks you for an equipment that is over their budget, how would you handle it?

Role-specific questions

  • Which factors would you consider when evaluating a supplier?
  • Elaborate on any supervisory experience.
  • Explain how you would find new suppliers.
  • What is a Uniform Commercial Code?
  • Are you familiar with a Qualified Products List?
  • Elaborate on how a purchase is done in a usual corporate environment.
  • Do you have any experience with management software?
  • How would you get a supplier’s references?
  • Do you have any experience in contract management?
  • Describe the processing of any purchase requisition.

Behavioral questions

  • Describe the incident from any of your failed purchase.
  • Elaborate on how you have lead a team of procurers for any project.
  • Describe how would you resolve any arguments with a supplier.
  • Explain why you had to cancel a supplier contract if it ever happened.
  • Describe how you achieved any discount with a supplier.

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