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Top 35 Purchasing Manager Interview Questions

Question 1 of 39
What tools do you use to keep track of progress on your projects?
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Question 2 of 39
What are your career goals?
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How to Answer
This question is asked to determine if your career goals align with the career path that the company offers. It's important to think about how the position you are interviewing for will fit into your long term goals even as you apply for jobs

Answer Example
"I plan to be a PM for the next three to five years and then move to either a more specialized commodity role or a higher leadership role in the purchasing area. Ultimately, which role and when will be determined on where I can add the most value to the organization."
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Question 3 of 39
What type of experience do you have in creating budgets?
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How to Answer
This question clarifies your ability to handle scale and scope. If your experience in on smaller budgets, include how your models have the ability to scale.

Answer Example
"At X company I was responsible for creating and managing a budget of $. I have been doing it on a regular basis as a part of my job and I am pretty good at projections."
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Question 4 of 39
How do you prioritize your work?
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How to Answer
The key to answering this questions is showing that you have daily time and prioritization period, that you use it, and that it is accommodating to changes.

Answer Example
"My priorities are the organization's priorities and can change based on this fact. I have to manage short-, mid- and long-term initiatives and prioritize my work according to them. Prioritizing is part of my daily planning process and I adjust as needed to serve the organization."
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Question 5 of 39
If we buy a customized product from a single source, how will you know if the price is fair?
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How to Answer
This is a "core knowledge" question as purchasing from a single source has unique risks that need to be minimized. Answering this question is fairly easy if you have good amount of experience in this industry.
You can explain what method you use for determining if the price is fair or not and why you trust your method.

Answer Example
"core knowledge"
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Question 6 of 39
How would your former employer describe you?
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Question 7 of 39
Give an example when you have had a dispute with a supplier? How did you handle it?
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Question 8 of 39
What is the most difficult situation you have had to face and how did you tackle it?
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Question 9 of 39
What do you enjoy about this industry?
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Question 10 of 39
What kind of work environment do you thrive in?
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Question 11 of 39
Do you work well on a team or prefer to work independently?
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Question 12 of 39
What kind of pressures have you encountered at work?
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Question 13 of 39
Why are you the best purchasing manager for us?
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Question 14 of 39
How will you go about determining this company's purchasing patterns?
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Question 15 of 39
When will your current project be completed, or when will be the next logical time to be able to leave on good terms with your team?
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Question 16 of 39
How do you ensure successful tracking of inventory?
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Question 17 of 39
Have you completed your Bachelor's Degree in Supply Management or Operations Management? If not, are you interested in obtaining your degree?
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Question 18 of 39
Are you a CPM (Certified Purchasing Manager)?
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Question 19 of 39
If hired, how long do you plan on working for us?
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Question 20 of 39
When have you had to change suppliers due to poor quality of their product?
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Question 21 of 39
Do you manage your time well?
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Question 22 of 39
How do you handle stressful situations?
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Question 23 of 39
Give an example of how you dealt with a supplier who did not deliver on the agreed upon date?
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Question 24 of 39
Do you have experience visiting a suppliers plant before purchasing? What are the things you are looking for when considering their products?
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Question 25 of 39
Are you open and available to travel for work?
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Question 26 of 39
What steps do you take to determine whether or not a price the suppler is offering is reasonable?
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Question 27 of 39
When have you negotiated a much lower price with a supplier?
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Question 28 of 39
What makes a great Purchasing Manager?
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Question 29 of 39
Tell me what you know about us.
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Question 30 of 39
Why did you choose to apply at our company?
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Question 31 of 39
Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume.
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Question 32 of 39
If hired, how do you intend on making a difference with our company?
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Question 33 of 39
What aspect of supervision do you find most difficult?
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Question 34 of 39
Do you have managing experience?
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Question 35 of 39
What techniques do you use in motivating employees?
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Question 36 of 39
Tell us about your experience in negotiations.
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Question 37 of 39
What are your long term goals as a purchasing manager?
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Question 38 of 39
If you could change one aspect of the purchasing process, what would you change?
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Question 39 of 39
What will bring purchasing to the C-Level dialog?
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About Purchasing Manager

September 30th, 2017

Purchasing managers are responsible for making major buying decisions on behalf of the company they work with. They look for the best goods, services or equipment they can get at the most competitive prices so that their company can continue to operate efficiently while still being able to make a profit. Keeping a check on stock levels, predicting demand for products or services, looking for best value for money, and developing a solid purchasing strategy are just some of the many responsibilities of a purchasing manager.

The qualifications necessary for this role may vary considerably depending on the size of the company as well as the industry. Larger companies will only hire candidates who have a minimum bachelor's degree in a field related to business, marketing, purchasing or retail management. Construction, engineering. and other technology firms will look for applicants who have the relevant knowledge and qualifications.

At your interview, the interviewer will ask you about your qualifications and experience in the field. They will also want to know why you chose this job and what skills you have that make you the best person for this role. If you want to know more about questions that are commonly asked at purchasing manager interviews, you will find several at Mock Questions.

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