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Purchasing Agents and Officers

What they do?

Purchasing agents and officers perform some or all of the following duties:

A. Purchase general and specialized equipment, materials or business services for use or for further processing by their establishment

B. Assess requirements of an establishment and develop specifications for equipment, materials and supplies to be purchased

C. Invite tenders, consult with suppliers and review quotations

D. Determine or negotiate contract terms and conditions, award supplier contracts or recommend contract awards

E. Establish delivery schedules, monitor progress and contact clients and suppliers to resolve problems

F. May hire, train or supervise purchasing clerks.

G. Purchasing agents and officers may specialize in the purchase of particular materials or business services such as furniture or office equipment.

Where they find work?

1. Wholesale trade - 12.0%
2. Public administration - 10.0%
3. Retail trade - 6.0%
4. Construction - 4.0%
5. Computer and electronic product manufacturing - 4.0%
6. Transportation and warehousing - 4.0%

What education do I need?

1. You usually need a university degree or college diploma in business administration, commerce or economics.

2. You may need experience as a purchasing or administrative clerk.

3. To specialize in the purchase of materials or business services, you may need a related university degree or college diploma. For example, a purchaser of industrial products may need a bachelor's degree or college diploma in engineering.

4. You may also need a Certificate in Purchasing [Certified Professional Purchaser (CPP)] from the Purchasing Management Association of Canada. This designation program is intended for practitioners in supply management who want to advance in their careers and obtain further education and expertise in the discipline.

5. With experience, you may move up the ranks to become a manager.

6. Many recent entrants have either an undergraduate university degree or a community college diploma.

High School Subject that will help:

1. Math
2. English
3. Business
4. Computer-related courses

What can you expect to make:

The average hourly wages for Purchasing Agents and Officers is $21.62/HR, which is above average for occupations in the business, finance and administration sector and are close to average for all technical, professional, and skilled occupations. These wages grew at an average rate from 2002 to 2004.

Average Wage

Purchasing Agents and Officers wages

Expected Wage by Age

Purchasing Agents and Officers Wage By Age

Unemployment:

3% of Purchasing Agents and Officers are unemployed. This rate is close to the average for technical, professional, and skilled occupations.

Unemployment

Purchasing Agents and Officers Unemployment

Trends in Unemployment

Purchasing Agents and Officers Trends in Unemployment

Current Job Outlook:

The job outlook for Purchasing Agents and Officers is considered Average because:

1. Employment grew at an average rate.

2. The retirement rate is above average, and the number of retiring workers contributes to job openings.

3. Hourly wages ($21.62) are close to the average ($18.07), and the rate of wage growth is close to the average..

4. The unemployment rate (3%) is close to the 2004 average (7%).

Future Job Prospects:

Your job outlook will continue to be Average because:

1. The employment growth rate will likely be average because job losses due to productivity gains should be offset by employment gains following from increased economic activity.

2. The retirement rate will likely be above average and the number of retiring workers should contribute to job openings.

3. The number of job seekers will likely match the number of job openings.

Highest Concetration:

The highest concentrations (per 10,000 people) of Purchasing Agents and Officers are found in Alberta and Quebec while the lowest concentrations are in Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.

Unionization Rate:

The unionization rate (29%) is close to the average (32%) for all occupations.

Useful Experience:

1. Computer literacy

2. Communication skills

3. Project management

Part Time Workers

Purchasing Agents and Officers Part Time Workers

Part time workers:


2% of Purchasing Agents and Officers are employed only on a part-time basis. There were 27,600 workers employed in these occupations in 2004, an increase of 6% since 1997.

Age Demographics

Purchasing Agents and Officers Age Demographics

Age Demographics:


The relatively low percentage of younger workers suggests few entry-level job openings, and could point to a greater need for workers with experience or a number of years of training. The retirement rate to 2009 will likely be above average because of a tendency to retire at an earlier-than-average age (60).

Self Employed

Purchasing Agents and Officers Self Employed

Self Employed:


Roughly 1% of Purchasing Agents and Officers are self-employed. This is considered Below average for the industry as a whole.

Men vs Women

Purchasing Agents and Officers Men vs Women

Men vs Women:


43% of the individuals employed as Purchasing Agents and Officers are women. Compared to other industries, this is Average.