Senior Purchasing Agent

Job description

DescriptionPosition Summary
The Procurement and Contract Services unit exists to procure goods and services for the University of Colorado (CU) community, which includes four campuses and System Administration. This unit is responsible for obtaining the goods and services needed by CU when they are needed, from the right source, and at the most reasonable cost possible. Additionally, Procurement and Contract Services assures accountability, integrity, and fairness to the public and business community through the interpretation and application of federal, state, and university procurement rules and regulations. 

The Senior Purchasing Agent is responsible for procuring goods and services in a timely manner by specifying delivery from the right source to the right place and at a price consistent with the quality and reliability required by the user.  Based on professional experience, knowledge, and using the highest ethical conduct, this position makes procurement decisions for the University community by clarifying requirements, investigating sources of supply, interpreting and analyzing data and circumstances.  This position provides procurement leadership to University departments by guiding them through the procurement process in order to obtain the best value for CU. Judgment is used in the adaptation and skilled application of guidelines to solve the full range of problems related to each procurement.

This position reports to the Purchasing Manager and is exempt from the State of Colorado Classified Staff System.

Duties and Responsibilties
Duties and responsibilities of the position include, but are not limited to: 

Procurement of Goods and Services

  • Procures goods (between $5,000 and $10,000) and services (between $5,000 and $50,000); uses professional judgment to determine if competition is required. 
  • Procures goods (over $10,000) and services (over $50,000) on a competitive basis by compiling and refining solicitation specifications, researching and identifying potential sources, and preparing formal solicitation documents. 
  • Independently determines the most appropriate method of acquiring goods and/or services by examining and evaluating the unique elements of each request: including estimating the value, determining delivery requirements, and researching sources of supply.  Accesses and employs the on-line computerized purchasing system and multiple software packages as tools in the procurement process.
  • Makes independent judgements of sole source procurements by evaluating and determining the validity of the requestor’s documentation.  Assures that the university obtains the best value by negotiating with suppliers.  Formulates cost/price analysis based on professional purchasing experience and knowledge.
  • Guides campus departments through procurement procedures. Collaborates with campus departments on defining performance measures and award criteria.  Interprets and analyzes responses, communicates the results, collaborates with the department on selecting awarded supplier(s), and awards the contract.  
  • Guides and assures the integrity of all aspects of the Request for Proposal process by research and developing the RFP documents in collaboration with the requesting department(s).  Interprets, explains, enforces, clarifies, counsels, and advocates courses of action, and advises the single or multi-campus evaluation committee of options and consequences by employing the University of Colorado Procurement Rules, State Fiscal Rules, Federal Laws and additionally, the policies/procedures of the various CU campuses as broad guidelines.  
  • Coordinates with Contract Administrator to negotiate, create and/or amend, contracts with suppliers by interpreting the position of the University on specific terms, nullifying unacceptable terms, proposing alternative terms, and/or writing amendments. Utilizes professional judgment in the adaptation and skilled application of guidelines to solve the full range of problems related to the assignment. Anticipates and analyzes the impact and consequences of decisions.
Relationship Management

  • Develops and professionally manages effective relationships with suppliers and internal departments.  
  • Represents the purchasing organization in meetings and/or committees with suppliers, government agencies, professional associations and other organizations.  
  • Operates an outreach program with the campus community by meeting with departments to advise them of contracts, policies and procedures, and to distribute information.  
  • Disseminates professional purchasing advice to departments and suppliers by interpreting state, federal and university rules, policies, procedures, processes and financial computer systems. 
  • Collaborates with PSC management in developing policies, procedures, and guidelines.
Contract Management

  • Independently develops, implements and administers state and university contracts, agreements and awards.  
  • Resolves contract or purchase order conflicts with reference to quality and/or payment discrepancies by using proven, as well as, unique and novel approaches to interpret contract terms and conditions.
Who we are: System Administration, which also houses the Office of the President, is located in the uptown neighborhood of Denver with a few smaller offices located on the campuses.  However, this position is located in Denver, and will travel to the campuses on occasion.  Many of our departments support the educational and research missions of the four University of Colorado campuses, but System Administration is not considered a campus. We provide diverse opportunities for professional development, innovation, and collaboration with talented staff and faculty.  Learn more about CU System Administration.

The University of Colorado has been proactive in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. You can visit our COVID-19 webpage for more information.

What we offer:

Salary: The salary range has been established at $60,850 - $75,074, but the expected hiring range is $68,000-$72,000.

Benefits: The University of Colorado offers an excellent benefits package including:

  • Medical: Multiple plan options
  • Dental: Multiple plan options
  • Additional Insurance: Disability, Life, Vision and Wellness
  • Retirement 401(a) Plan: Employer contributes 10% of your gross pay
  • Paid Time Off: Accruals over the year
    • Vacation Days: 22
    • Sick Days: 15
    • Holiday Days: 10
  • Tuition Benefit: System employees have the benefit on all campuses 
  • ECO Pass: RTD Bus and light rail service
  • Additional Perks & Programs: Click here to access a few more Perks and Programs
Click here to access our Total Compensation Calculator to see what your total rewards could be at CU. This position is a University Staff position.

More information on benefits programs, including eligibility, is available at

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
To be successful in this position, candidates will need the following:

  • Knowledge of the business and organizational structure of CU.
  • Knowledge of performance measures and contractual concepts, terms, and conditions.
  • Knowledge of negotiation methods, strategies, and tactics.
  • Oral, written, and listening communication skills, including the ability to accurately interpret what others are saying and convey messages, information, concepts, and details accurately and clearly.
  • Computer skills, including the ability to utilize Microsoft Office programs (i.e. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, etc.) and learn and experiment with new software and systems.
  • Interpersonal skills, including the ability to facilitate interaction, communication, and teamwork between others.
  • Negotiation skills, including the ability to listen, build rapport, solve problems, make decisions, be assertive, and deal with difficult situations.
  • Analytical and problem-solving skills, including the ability to examine and summarize data and trends in order to resolve issues and produce results.
  • Organizational skills, including the ability to set and meet goals and deadlines, manage appointments, create schedules, coordinate and facilitate meetings, and make decisions.
  • Creative skills, including the ability to ask questions, generate new ideas, experiment, make observations, and develop connections between disparate concepts.
  • Evaluative skills, including the ability to assess information for reliability, validity, and relevance.
  • Critical thinking skills, including the ability to identify problems, questions, and assumptions; establish significance; and understand logical connections between ideas.
  • Ability to establish and maintain good working relationships with co-workers, supervisors, other University personnel, and the public.
  • Ability to work under pressure, manage multiple concurrent and competing tasks and responsibilities, and adapt to changing priorities while maintaining personal effectiveness.
  • Ability to be cognizant of and address details.
  • Ability to deliver a high level of commitment to customer service.
  • Ability to respond to requests in a timely manner.
  • Ability to effectively collaborate with team members in-person and remotely.

QualificationsMinimum Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education, or equivalent professional experience (professional experience may be substituted for the educational requirement on a year-for-year basis).
  • Three (3) years’ professional experience procuring goods and services.
Preferred Qualifications:

  • Five (5) years’ professional experience procuring goods and services.
  • Professional experience working with or in government of an institution of higher education.
  • Professional procurement certification (e.g. Certified Purchasing Manager, Certified Public Procurement Officer, Certified Professional Public Buyer, Certified Professional Contracts Manager).

Job Category: Business Services
Primary Location: Denver
Schedule: Full-time
Posting Date: Jan 5, 2021
Unposting Date: Ongoing




Diversity Profile: University



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Job No:
Posted: 1/7/2021
Application Due: 4/7/2021
Work Type: Full Time