A procurement director is responsible for developing and implementing company policy, providing expert advice on all purchasing and contracting decision, negotiating large purchases, and responding to any claims regarding contract law violation. Procurement is another term for purchasing of goods and services. The procurement director typically reports to the chief financial officer or controller, which usually means that the department is considered part of financial services.
Recommended training to become a procurement director includes a four-year post-secondary education program in business, accounting, or purchasing. The role of procurement director is typically achieved after a minimum of 10 years of experience working as a procurement officer or manager. There are several procurement associations that provide additional training and a professional designation to candidates. These designations vary by state and are granted based on a combination of education and experience.
The primary responsibility of a procurement director is strategic and governance related. He or she is expected to define a series of policies and procedures that form the basis for all interaction between the company and suppliers. Levels of internal approvals, issuing of purchasing orders, terms and conditions, and a series of related items are determined by the procurement director.
Contract law is quite complicated, and a large section of it relates directly to contract "A" and "B." These two types of contracts are used to explain the initial, verbal agreement between the purchaser and the seller, and the final, written agreement. Both are legally binding, and the actions and communications that occur between these two dates are critical in any dispute resolution process. It is the procurement director’s responsibility to be up to date on the latest legal decisions, and provide expert advice to the company, based on that information.
Large purchases are typically negotiated by the director, on behalf of the company. These negotiations are usually multi-year contracts with a significant dollar value. The director is responsible for meeting with internal resources to determine their requirements, discussing budget, timing, delivery dates, and any other items that must be included in the contract. Depending on the industry, the purchasing director may not have final signature authorization on large contracts. The organizational structure may require final approval of any contract by a board of directors, chief financial officer, or company president.
In case of any business disputes related to contracts or purchases, the purchasing director is responsible for the initial review. Many disputes can be resolved through skilled negotiation before they become a legal matter. Any lawsuits filed that are related to contract law are reviewed by the purchasing director for input and comment before being reviewed by the firm’s lawyer.