Purchasing Job Titles and Descriptions

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Purchasers buy a range of products and services for organizations, working to get the best deal on quality and price. To do so, they review sales records and inventory, research suppliers, and keep abreast of trends affecting the supply and demand of the products they need.

There are many types of jobs within the broad field of purchasing. Read below for an extensive list of different purchasing job titles, as well as a descriptive list of the most common purchasing job titles. Use these lists when searching for a job in purchasing. You might also use this list to encourage your employer to change the title of your position to better fit your responsibilities.

5 Most Common Purchasing Job Titles

Below is a list of some of the most common job titles from the purchasing industry, as well as a description of each:

  1. Buyer: A buyer purchases products and services for companies to either use or resell. To make the right purchases, they evaluate suppliers, review products for quality, and negotiate contracts. Buyers require strong analytical skills because they have to analyze different options when evaluating suppliers. They also have to be able to negotiate with suppliers to get the best deals. “Buyer” and “purchasing agent” titles are often used interchangeably.
  2. Expeditor: Expeditors track inventory for a company. They make sure that goods are shipped and delivered in a timely manner, that they are packaged well, and that they are of the right quality. Expeditors can work in any industry, but many work in warehouses or manufacturing plants.
  1. Procurement Specialist: “Procurement” is a broader term than “purchasing.” It refers to the wider process of evaluating and selecting vendors, setting up terms of payment, negotiating contracts, and making the actual purchases. A procurement specialist finds goods and services for a company at the best price. They analyze suppliers, negotiate contracts, and track and monitor inventory.
  2. Purchasing agent: The title “purchasing agent” is often used interchangeably with “buyer.” A purchasing agent buys products and services for companies to either use or resell. To make the right purchases, they evaluate suppliers, review products for quality, and negotiate contracts. Purchasing agents need strong analytical skills because they have to analyze different options when evaluating suppliers. They also have to be able to negotiate with suppliers to get the best deals.
  1. Purchasing manager: Purchasing managers have more responsibility than buyers and purchasing agents. They manage and coordinate the buying of products and services for companies. In part, this involves overseeing the work of buyers and purchasing agents. While they need all the same skills as purchasing agents and buyers, they typically need at least five years of experience in the industry. Some also require a master’s degree.

Purchasing Job Titles

The following is a list of job titles for purchasing and procurement positions, including those listed above:


  • Assistant procurement manager
  • Associate buyer
  • Automotive credit buyer
  • Buyer 
  • Buyer assistant
  • Buyer engagement team lead
  • Buyer-planner
  • Carrier procurement representative
  • Category acquisition advisor
  • Category acquisition director
  • Category acquisition lead
  • Category acquisition manager
  • Category attraction specialist
  • Category buyer
  • Category engagement advisor
  • Category identification manager
  • Category partner
  • Category sourcing lead
  • Category sourcing manager
  • Category sourcing partner
  • Chief category officer
  • Chief procurement officer
  • Contract administrator
  • Contract manager
  • Contract and pricing analyst
  • Corporate buyer
  • Corporate procurement lead
  • Cost engineer
  • Deputy head of procurement
  • Direct buyer
  • Direct procurement specialist
  • Director of purchasing


  • Executive buyer
  • Executive category acquisition
  • Expeditor
  • Global category selection manager
  • Global procurement sourcing analyst
  • Graduate buyer
  • Head of category
  • Head of procurement
  • HR purchasing specialist
  • Hybrid buyer
  • Indirect buyer
  • Internal buyer
  • Inventory analyst
  • Inventory planner
  • Lateral buyer
  • Lateral procurement manager
  • Lead buyer
  • Lead category scout
  • Lead sourcing consultant
  • Leasing materials analyst
  • Merchant assistant


  • Pricing specialist
  • Principal delivery consultant
  • Principal procurement specialist
  • Procurement account specialist
  • Procurement advisor
  • Procurement analyst
  • Procurement assistant
  • Procurement consultant
  • Procurement director
  • Procurement lead
  • Procurement manager
  • Procurement marketing manager
  • Procurement operations manager
  • Procurement partner
  • Procurement specialist
  • Project purchaser
  • Proposal pricing analyst
  • Prototype buyer
  • Purchase post-closing auditor
  • Purchase pre-closing auditor
  • Purchaser
  • Purchasing agent
  • Purchasing consultant
  • Purchasing clerk
  • Purchasing expeditor
  • Purchasing manager
  • Purchasing supervisor
  • Relationship manager
  • Replenishment analyst
  • Research official
  • Resource consultant
  • Resourcing advisor
  • Resourcing associate
  • Resourcing director
  • Resourcing lead
  • Resourcing manager
  • Resourcing partner
  • Resourcing specialist
  • Senior buyer
  • Senior planner
  • Senior purchasing agent
  • Service delivery manager
  • Sourcer
  • Sourcing advisor
  • Sourcing manager
  • Sourcing project manager
  • Sourcing specialist
  • Special programs buyer
  • Strategic buyer
  • Strategic procurement lead
  • Strategic sourcing manager
  • Supplier quality engineer
  • Supplier quality specialist
  • Supplier relations executive
  • Supplier relationship manager
  • Supply chain buyer
  • Tactical buyer
  • Technical buyer
  • Technical procurement lead
  • Vendor coordinator
  • Vendor manage