Compile information and records to draw up purchase orders for procurement of materials and services.
Sample of reported job titles: Buyer, Procurement Assistant, Procurement Officer, Procurement Specialist, Procurement Technician, Purchasing Assistant, Purchasing Associate, Purchasing Clerk, Purchasing Specialist, Warehouse Clerk
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Tasks | Technology Skills | Tools Used | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Perform buying duties when necessary.
- Prepare purchase orders and send copies to suppliers and to departments originating requests.
- Compare suppliers’ bills with bids and purchase orders to verify accuracy.
- Prepare, maintain, and review purchasing files, reports and price lists.
- Check shipments when they arrive to ensure that orders have been filled correctly and that goods meet specifications.
- Compare prices, specifications, and delivery dates to determine the best bid among potential suppliers.
- Review requisition orders to verify accuracy, terminology, and specifications.
- Determine if inventory quantities are sufficient for needs, ordering more materials when necessary.
- Calculate costs of orders, and charge or forward invoices to appropriate accounts.
- Maintain knowledge of all organizational and governmental rules affecting purchases, and provide information about these rules to organization staff members and to vendors.
- Contact suppliers to schedule or expedite deliveries and to resolve shortages, missed or late deliveries, and other problems.
- Track the status of requisitions, contracts, and orders.
- Respond to customer and supplier inquiries about order status, changes, or cancellations.
- Locate suppliers, using sources such as catalogs and the internet, and interview them to gather information about products to be ordered.
- Train and supervise subordinates and other staff.
- Approve and pay bills.
- Monitor contractor performance, recommending contract modifications when necessary.
- Prepare invitation-of-bid forms, and mail forms to supplier firms or distribute forms for public posting.
- Monitor in-house inventory movement and complete inventory transfer forms for bookkeeping purposes.
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- Accounting software — Intuit QuickBooks
- Calendar and scheduling software — Work scheduling software
- Cloud-based data access and sharing software — Microsoft SharePoint
- Data base user interface and query software — Data entry software; Microsoft Access ; Oracle software
- Electronic mail software — Microsoft Outlook
- Enterprise application integration software — Electronic data interchange EDI software
- Enterprise resource planning ERP software — Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne ; Oracle PeopleSoft ; Radiant Systems CounterPoint; SAP software (see all 7 examples)
- Internet browser software — Web browser software
- Inventory management software — Inventory tracking software
- Office suite software — Microsoft Office
- Operating system software — Microsoft Windows
- Presentation software — Microsoft PowerPoint
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word
Hot Technology — a technology requirement frequently included in employer job postings.
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- Administrative — Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
- Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
- Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- Transportation — Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
- Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
- Production and Processing — Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
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- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Time Management — Managing one’s own time and the time of others.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
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- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing that there is a problem.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Mathematical Reasoning — The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
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- Working with Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Communicating with People Outside the Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Monitoring Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
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Detailed Work Activities
- Order materials, supplies, or equipment.
- Prepare documentation for contracts, transactions, or regulatory compliance.
- Send information, materials or documentation.
- Verify accuracy of financial or transactional data.
- Check data for recording errors.
- Analyze financial information.
- Inspect shipments to ensure correct order fulfillment.
- Execute sales or other financial transactions.
- Calculate costs of goods or services.
- Maintain current knowledge related to work activities.
- Monitor inventories of products or materials.
- Provide information to coworkers.
- Coordinate shipping activities with external parties.
- Maintain operational records.
- Discuss account status or activity with customers or patrons.
- Supervise clerical or administrative personnel.
- Obtain information about goods or services.
- Train personnel.
- Track goods or materials.
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- Electronic Mail — 100% responded “Every day.”
- Telephone — 97% responded “Every day.”
- Contact With Others — 87% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 77% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Sitting — 73% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 64% responded “Extremely important.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 60% responded “Extremely important.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 63% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 72% responded “Every day.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 83% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 59% responded “Extremely important.”
- Deal With External Customers — 58% responded “Extremely important.”
- Time Pressure — 55% responded “Every day.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 42% responded “Extremely important.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 45% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 65% responded “40 hours.”
- Letters and Memos — 38% responded “Every day.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 32% responded “Very important results.”
- Frequency of Conflict Situations — 32% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 35% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Level of Competition — 41% responded “Moderately competitive.”
- Consequence of Error — 29% responded “Fairly serious.”
- Physical Proximity — 50% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
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|Title||Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed|
|Education||Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate’s degree.|
|Related Experience||Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include hydroelectric production managers, travel guides, electricians, agricultural technicians, barbers, court reporters, and medical assistants.|
|SVP Range||(6.0 to < 7.0)|
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Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|14||High school diploma or equivalent
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Interest code: CE Want to discover your interests? Take the O*NET Interest Profiler at My Next Move.
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
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- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Independence — Job requires developing one’s own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high-stress situations.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Self-Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others’ needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
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- Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
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Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2020)||$21.51 hourly, $44,740 annual|
|Employment (2020)||63,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2020-2030)||Decline (-1% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2020-2030)||5,200|
|Top industries (2020)||
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2020 wage data and 2020-2030 employment projections . “Projected growth” represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2020-2030). “Projected job openings” represent openings due to growth and replacement.
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Job Openings on the Web
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Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- American Bankers Association
- Coalition for Government Procurement
- Institute for Supply Management
- Mortgage Bankers Association
- Occupational Outlook Handbook: Financial clerks
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