9 Skills You Need To Work In Procurement

skills you need to work in procurement

Essential skills needed for working in procurement

1. Project Management Skills

At the core of procurement, there needs to be a competency in project management. This is a needed skill for working in procurement; which demands various activities that result in a finished product. A procurement professional initiates, plans, executes, and monitors the project it through to completion. Organization and good timing is the key to success in this kind of role. Are things being done on time and correctly? This is what you need to ask yourself every day. For support, project management solutions can be a time and organizational saver!

2. Flexibility

Mistakes happen. Orders get delayed. Inspections fail. Natural disasters happen. If you work in procurement, you know to keep your cool and fix the problem quickly. In a function where risks are actively being measured, this is a needed skill. Disruptions happen but your business still keeps going. Procurement managers appreciate level headed employees when things don’t go as planned. Procurement Professionals have a demanding role and recruiters look for flexibility as a key skill.

3. Analytic Skills

One of the main challenges for Procurement Professionals is getting accurate analyses. Working in procurement, you need to have a basic understanding of story telling. What does this mean? You should be able to look at any analytic report(workflow, spend, etc.) and draw conclusions. Since Winddle is a solution that provides a visual of your workflow, we understand how important it is to identify areas for improvement. Even the smallest changes can make a huge difference.

4. Negotiation Skills

Maybe you’re born with it, maybe you’re not. Regardless, this is one of the most important skills for procurement professionals. Suppliers expect you to negotiate, because they are trying to do the same thing. The best way to negotiate is trying to find a win-win for both you and your supplier.  A good negotiator has good perceptive skills and intuition.

5. Communication Skills

It is fair to say that communicating what you want is difficult, especially to someone who speaks a different language and lives by a different culture. In procurement, you are in contact with many different people. Poor communication skills can result in incorrect orders. The best communicators are reactive. You may be expressing a thought that is completely clear to you but unclear to the other. As a solution to the barrier, many companies are beginning to implement online communication strategies. This makes connectivity constant and standard; easiest when IT solutions have collaborative features between buyers and suppliers. We have seen companies incredibly improve the accuracy of orders by using this feature.

6. Relationship Management Skills

Supplier Relationship Management is a key component of procurement. Companies that have strong relationships with their suppliers reap many benefits from cooperative suppliers to cost savings. So being personable is a start. Suppliers need to trust you to build a good relationship. In our last post we said, “Don’t question if they are a good friend to you before you assess if you’re a good friend to them.” A one-way-street thinker will never be successful working in procurement.

7. Teamwork

Category Management may separate your company’s procurement duties but studies have shown that poorly integrated departments can fail. This is why a team player will excel in procurement. Accepting that you only have one set of responsibilities without thinking about the well being of the team can keep you flat. A group will work better as a team rather than individuals doing their jobs. Not everyone has the same qualities and offerings to the project but can be equally valuable. Combining everyone’s skills in your procurement department through collaboration and teamwork can be incredibly beneficial.

8. Tech Savvy

New Technologies are being developed every day; ones that can be valuable to the procurement process. So it is absolutely essential that procurement professionals possess the skills to adapt any new technology into their daily workflow. Having an aptitude for technology is important because it shows you can do anything. So when your company decides to deploy an IT solution, they can count on you to pick it up quickly and use it effectively.

When the Head of Procurement and Supply Chain recruitment at Uniting Ambition was asked to identify the best candidates, he said,

“It’s important to embrace new technology to stay on your toes. The procurement landscape is changing as technology advances and it’s the professionals who keep their finger on the pulse who get ahead.”

9. Change Management Skills

As companies are deploying new IT solutions, the entirety of the department goes through a major change. In addition to training for the new software, you must realize that operations change. Tasks you once did by hand can now be automated. In addition to technology, many companies are also planning on implementing sustainability or collaboration plans. Procurement itself will see a significant change in responsibility and strategy in the next few years. Being mentally prepared for any change that comes your way is an important skill to have in this moment in time.

Winddle is a simple, flexible and powerful collaborative platform for all your creation, sourcing and procurement operations.

Contact a customer success manager to find out how Winddle can help you! Support@winddle.com

Don’t forget to connect with us! @WinddleApp / Linkedin / Facebook

Share on Procurious

11 Responses to “9 Skills You Need To Work In Procurement”

  1. Valter Viana

    Very good article. Surelly I will share it with my team. Thanks…

    Reply
  2. Sarkuna

    9 skills explained well. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  3. Jacky Xiang

    LIKE

    Reply
  4. Tina Kaufman

    Very good. These are basic and necessary skills. Some of the ‘Frosting’ on the cake are points such as: Sense of Urgency, good vetted commodity sources, supply chain management, and my favorite and most reliable point — maintaining source/contact relationships and establishing uniting partnerships. That will get you the biggest bang for your buck and keep you out of trouble.

    Reply
    • Meghan Huynh

      Hi Tina,
      Thanks for your comment! Sense of Urgency, that’s definitely an underrated skill that in most professions is valuable. It kind of goes along with being level-headed. I really do think this is an important one that people overlook. And I totally agree… Uniting partnerships is the goal

      Reply
  5. Maureen Wilberforce

    This was a very user friendly article, with great tips. I learned a lot and will be implementing a few of the recommentions in my current Contract Administrator position.

    Reply
  6. Bobbie

    Excellent Article!

    Reply
  7. Somayajulu VN

    Very good article. Yes, these are essential for every procurement specialist. Thanks.

    Reply
  8. Nik K

    Good list. I would add “strategic thinking”.

    Reply

Leave a Reply