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Purchasing Agent

Job description

The Procurement Service Center (PSC) provides leadership to the University of Colorado in the procurement of goods and services and in paying debts to vendors and travelers by combining sound business controls with efficient and timely service. The functional areas of the PSC include Purchasing Services, Strategic Sourcing, Supplier Relationship Management, Payable Services, Commercial Card Program, Travel Program, Small Business Program, Contract Services, and Procurement Systems. PSC is the system owner of CU Marketplace and Concur Travel and Expense.

Position 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 while interpreting and applying federal, state, and university rules and regulations to assure accountability and integrity to the public and fairness to the business community.

The Purchasing Agent procures 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, while interpreting and analyzing data and circumstances. The successful candidate is an effective communicator committed to delivering the highest quality customer service.

They are organized and are able to multi-task.  The Purchasing Agent provides procurement leadership to university departments by guiding them through the procurement process in order to obtain the best value for the university. 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 Services Manager and is exempt from the State of Colorado Classified Staff system.  

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Procures services using professional judgment to determine if competition is required. Procures goods and services pursuant to the University’s Procurement Rules on a competitive basis by compiling and refining solicitation specifications, researching and identifying potential sources, and preparing formal solicitation documents. 
  • Guides campus departments through procurement procedures. 
  • Collaborates with campus departments on solicitation creation including requirements and appropriate award criteria. 
  • Interprets and analyzes responses, communicates the results, and 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 (RFP) 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 and State of Colorado on specific terms, 
  • 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.
  • Independently determines the most appropriate method of acquiring goods and/or services by examining and evaluating the unique elements of each request which may include: 
    • Estimating the value
    • Determining delivery requirements 
    • Researching sources of supply
    • Accessing and employs the on-line computerized purchasing system and multiple software packages as tools in the procurement process.
  • Develops and professionally manages effective relationships with suppliers and internal departments by delivering high quality service and accurate information. 
  • 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 visiting 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. 
  • May develop, implement and administer university small dollar contracts, agreements and awards. 
  • Collaborates with PSC management in developing policies, procedures, and guidelines.
  • Resolves contract or purchase order conflicts with reference to quality and/or payment discrepancies working with the contracts team to interpret contract terms and conditions.
  • Analyzes sole-source, professional preference and other bidding exception requests and recommends approval or disapproval
  • Assures that the university obtains the best value by negotiating with suppliers. 
  • Formulates cost/price analysis based on professional purchasing experience and knowledge.
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. 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 $54,700 - $67,600, with the expected hiring range at $54,700 - $56,000.

The salary of the finalist(s) selected for this role will be set based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to, internal equity, experience, education, specialty and training.

The above salary range (or hiring range) represents the University’s good faith and reasonable estimate of the range of possible compensation at the time of posting.

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.

Additional taxable fringe benefits may be available.

More information on benefits programs, including eligibility, is available at www.cu.edu/employee-services/.

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

  • Knowledge of performance measures and standard contract terms and conditions.
  • Collaboration skills, including the ability to work with others from different areas and backgrounds to reach a common goal 
  • 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
  • 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
  • Organizational skills, including the ability to set and meet goals and deadlines, manage appointments, create schedules, coordinate and facilitate meetings, and make decisions 
  • Ability to work under pressure, manage multiple concurrent and competing tasks and responsibilities, and adapt to changing priorities while maintaining personal effectiveness
  • Ability to prioritize work, meet deadlines, and stay on task when completing special projects and daily assignments
  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision and reliable professional judgment, as well as collaboratively with a team to achieve desired results
  • Ability to maintain a strong work ethic, positive problem-solving attitude, and enthusiasm for the work performed
  • Ability to self-start and take initiative in completing daily tasks and special projects
  • Ability to focus on activities that have the greatest impact on meeting work commitments
  • Ability to establish and maintain partnerships with a variety of internal and external constituencies
  • Ability to communicate and work effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and ages
  • Ability to interpret and apply complex rules and regulations
  • Ability to handle and maintain sensitive and confidential material
  • Ability to be cognizant of and address details 
  • Analytical and problem-solving skills, including the ability to examine and summarize data and trends in order to resolve issues and produce results
  • Knowledge of contractual concepts, terms, and conditions
  • Ability to resolve issues and develop new ideas and initiatives that improve the performance of the organization
  • Customer service skills, including the ability to actively listen, address customer needs, defuse tense situations, and maintain an open, flexible, and friendly demeanor
  • Ability to deliver a high level of commitment to customer service
  • Ability to respond to requests in a timely manner
  • Ability to present oneself professionally in appearance, demeanor, and effort
  • Ability to effectively collaborate with team members in-person and remotely
  • Ability to successfully negotiate with internal and external constituencies and with diplomacy 

Minimum Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree from accredited institution of higher education or equivalent professional experience (the educational requirement may be substituted for professional experience on a year for year basis).
  • One (1) year of professional experience in a customer service, finance, accounts payable, and/or procurement role. 
Preferred Qualifications

  • Two (2) years of professional experience in a customer service, finance, accounts payable, and/or procurement role. 
  • Professional experience in a higher education institution or other public procurement organization.
  • Professional procurement certification such as CPSM or CPPB.

Job Category: Business Services
Primary Location: Denver
Schedule: Full-time
Posting Date: Apr 26, 2021
Unposting Date: Ongoing




Diversity Profile: University


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Job No:
Posted: 4/27/2021
Application Due: 7/26/2021
Work Type: Full Time