Working as a strategic buyer

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Strategic Buyer Vacancies

xentys, founded in 2010, focuses on search (permanent procurement positions) and interim procurement assignments for professionals, management and young talent. Our focus is on industry, contracting and technical wholesale. xentys works internationally. we have a broad network within the above disciplines (we have been active in these services for 23 years), and select candidates based on practical cases. We hope to speak to you soon!

Category Manager Utilities (Gas, Power, Water) a.i.

Procurement Interim Rotterdam area

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Technical Strategic Buyer a.i.

Procurement Interim Breda area

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SAP 4HANA consultant a.i.

Procurement Interim Southern Limburg area

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Category manager Indirects

Procurement Permanent Utrecht area 80,000

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Global Category manager Chemicals

Procurement Permanent Tilburg area 100,000 per year

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Sr. Contracts Engineer Offshore Projects

Procurement Permanent Rotterdam area 80,000 per year

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Global Category manager Mechanical & Hydraulics

Procurement Permanent Rotterdam area 89,000 per year

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Procurement positions starting at €60,000 per year

Looking for the ideal technical positions? At you will find only the most lucrative positions in procurement. Step into the world of top procurement and discover jobs that will take your career to the next level.

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Working as a strategic buyer

A crucial factor in the prosperity of an organization lies in its ability to make strategic purchasing decisions. In this regard, the strategic buyer plays a vital role, being responsible for identifying, evaluating and selecting suppliers that offer the best value for the organization. In doing so, as a professional, you are responsible for choosing suppliers and the additional negotiations with suppliers.

In addition, developing and implementing new procurement strategies and optimizing procurement processes to save costs are also important responsibilities. These responsibilities are one thing, but in the process a strategic buyer is also charged with managing supplier relationships in the best possible way.

Identifying potential risks and implementing appropriate measures to mitigate them is also something the buyer can consider. This is what we will discuss in more detail further down the page.

It helps when a strategic buyer has excellent communication skills, knowledge of the particular market and technologies. Skillful mastery of procurement processes is a crucial factor in successfully contributing to business results as a buyer in the long run. It is a challenging but also a very rewarding position that truly goes to the heart of business operations.

The difference between operational and strategic procurement

In addition to a strategic buyer, there are often several buyers operating within an organisation. These include tactical buyers and operational buyers. These are both important parts of an organisation’s procurement process. For now, we will elaborate on the difference between the strategic buyer and the similar function operational buyer.

Purchasers who operate operationally mainly focus on placing orders and managing day-to-day procurement activities. They ensure that business operations run smoothly. On the other hand, the strategic buyer deals with making the long-term approach. This includes, for example, the procurement of goods and services.

These goods and services are what the organisation needs to achieve its long-term goals. Strategic procurement is therefore more focused on the future of the organisation and tries to smartly and effectively anticipate changes within the market. A buyer should keep the customer’s needs and wants in mind at all times while performing his tasks. Various aspects such as risk management, supplier management and identifying possible opportunities to generate more profit are taken into account.

Where does a strategic buyer work?

Het verschil tussen operationele en strategische inkoop

Naast een strategische inkoper zijn er binnen een organisatie vaak meerdere inkopers actief. Hieronder vallen tactische inkopers en operationele inkopers. Dit zijn beide belangrijke onderdelen van het inkoopproces van een organisatie. Voor nu gaan we nader in op het verschil tussen de strategische inkoper en de operationele inkoper met een vergelijkbare functie.

Inkopers die operationeel opereren richten zich vooral op het plaatsen van orders en het beheren van de dagelijkse inkoopactiviteiten. Zij zorgen ervoor dat de bedrijfsvoering soepel verloopt. De strategische inkoper daarentegen houdt zich bezig met het maken van de langetermijnaanpak. Hieronder valt bijvoorbeeld de inkoop van goederen en diensten.

Deze goederen en diensten heeft de organisatie nodig om haar langetermijndoelen te bereiken. Strategische inkoop is dus meer gericht op de toekomst van de organisatie en probeert slim en effectief te anticiperen op veranderingen binnen de markt. Een inkoper moet bij de uitvoering van zijn taken te allen tijde de wensen en behoeften van de klant voor ogen houden. Er wordt rekening gehouden met verschillende aspecten zoals risicobeheer, leveranciersbeheer en het identificeren van mogelijke kansen om meer winst te genereren.

What does a strategic buyer's working day look like?

A strategic buyer’s working day typically consists of procurement-focused activities. Researching and analysing the market to identify cost-saving opportunities may be a task. For example, as a buyer, you will have to negotiate with suppliers to get the best prices and terms. Often, as an experienced buyer, you will have short lines of communication with a specific person within large organisations where you procure.

You may also be responsible for keeping up with industry trends, assessing the latest technologies or materials that can benefit the organisation. As a strategic buyer, you must also have strong analytical skills to make informed decisions about the procurement of goods and services.

Some of the tasks a strategic buyer may have are listed below.

  • Set up market analyses and studies to identify opportunities for cost savings, for example. This allows you as a strategic buyer to, among other things, provide purchasing advice within the organisation
  • Negotiate with suppliers to get the most favourable purchasing conditions.
  • Oversee complex procurement processes from start to finish.
  • Prepare and monitor contracts with certain suppliers
  • Prepare strategic purchasing plans for different product categories
  • Develop criteria for evaluating suppliers. In doing so, monitor compliance with contractual obligations

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The skills required to become an effective strategic buyer

Becoming an effective strategic buyer requires several key skills, including:

  • Excellent communication and negotiation skills
  • Building relationships with suppliers
  • Understanding the market, technologies and trends
  • The ability to analyse data to make purchasing decisions that fit business objectives
  • Managing multiple projects and priorities simultaneously
  • Making decisions and managing risk.
  • Having strong business acumen to align procurement strategy with set goals.

All these factors will help take the organisation to the next level.

In what ways can these skills be further developed?

If you want to become an experienced strategic buyer, both theoretical and practical learned knowledge is essential. First of all, a targeted education or training in procurement and supply chain management can help you gain solid knowledge of processes, suppliers and business. In addition, it is also important to gain relevant work experience by doing an internship or working as an assistant buyer. One year of work experience within a dynamic environment can make you an all-round buyer. In doing so, however, it is important to maintain a vision of procurement.

Networking at events and keeping abreast of the latest trends in procurement and supply chain are also very effective things to try. Over time, develop soft skills such as communication, negotiation, decision-making and leadership through training, coaching and feedback from colleagues and managers. Xentys is happy to contribute to your development as a buyer. Becoming a strategic buyer takes time, but it can ultimately lead to a rewarding career in a dynamic field.

What an open application at Xentys can bring you

Would you like to receive tailor-made vacancies or do you prefer a general overview of all vacancies? Applying through an ‘open application’ can be very useful for those who have their eye on a job at a particular company, but do not see a vacancy that suits them. At Xentys, we make sure the candidate receives an individual approach. We first talk to our candidates and then organise an interview with one of our specialists – to get an exact picture of their capabilities, qualifications and preferences before we introduce them to the employer. This way, every aspect is considered and precious time and energy is saved.

To purchasing vacancies

Complete the form below for an open application at Xentys B.V.

Application form [NL]

How does an open application work at Xentys?

Starting an open application can be a great way for people/candidates in the tech sectors to show their interest in a job and be considered for potential career opportunities! Find out how to get started here:

  • First, make sure your CV and cover letter reflect your relevant skills, qualifications and experience in the technical field.
  • Then submit this open application to us using the form on the right. You may then receive a phone call from one of our recruitment specialists.
  • Above all, remain patient, because finding the right opportunity through an open application sometimes takes a little longer than applying for a specific job.
  • At Xentys, our main aim is to ensure that you are linked to the position that really suits you – so keep an open mind and let us do the work!



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