Category Specialist (Construction & MRO) | Industrial Chemicals | Hersham, Surrey

A well-recognised and industry-leading, industrial gas company has an opportunity for a Category Specialist to join their family and be a part of their construction team.

The ideal Category Specialist will be responsible for managing cost and supplier risks for many site construction services such as civil, scaffolding, installation, piping components, heavy engineering capital equipment, maintenance services and spares. This is a vital role covering all manufacturing sites in the UK and Ireland and with some exposure to Europe. The role holder will act as a relationship manager with business groups and stakeholders to ensure that procurement is fully engaged with the business and service levels are maintained. The role will dovetail the delivery of strategic and some tactical procurement.

As Category Specialist your key responsibilities will be:

  • Deliver year on year cost reduction and beat inflation costs, contributing to the regional target
  • Minimise supply risks by proactively identifying high-risk suppliers and deploying a risk mitigation plan
  • Raise procurement’s profile with the organisation by effectively communicating with stakeholders and sharing successes stories/reporting on value add
  • Drive supplier relation management initiatives with critical suppliers to extract the best value through effective partnering and by driving supplier innovation.
  • Develop category plans and drive execution of the plan for cost reduction, risk reduction and process improvement
  • Develop and implement sourcing strategies for the respective commodities
  • Manage project and other deadlines
  • Participate in all service level review agreements for the major existing contracts with suppliers and resolve all commercial issues
  • Identify areas for improvement in the payment process or any other process related to the category. Propose, own and implement the required improvements
  • Manage and resolve any conflicts with existing suppliers related to service performance or invoice discrepancy

Essential skills and experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in business or supply chain or equivalent
  • CIPS qualification
  • Experience in leading and developing sourcing strategies, understanding commercial and legal purchasing terms and conditions
  • Good understanding and experience in managing categories such as site construction (civil, scaffolding, installation, craneage and others), capital equipment, maintenance and spares
  • Examples of having developed and lead sourcing strategies for the above categories /commodities
  • Experience of driving change management projects
  • Experience of drafting and implementing supplier agreements and appraising their performance against KPIs
  • Capabilities in handling detailed and complex contract negotiations

You will have:

  • Strong, strategic mindset
  • Zest for continuous improvement both within the specific category and wider procurement function processes.
  • Excellent stakeholder management
  • Skill in communication at all business levels
  • Managing delivery to key deadlines
  • Prioritisation, planning, and follow-up skills within a multi-tasking environment
  • Excellent communication skills with the ability to manage relationships at all levels in the organisation
  • Self-discipline and self-motivation with the ability to work autonomously and with minimal day to day direction
  •  Strong analytical skills

Benefits of the Category Specialist role include:

  • Bonus scheme
  • Medical insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Flexible working (work from home day)
  • Onsite gym, canteen and parking
  • 26 days holidays (rising through continued service)
  • Pension options 

To discuss the Category Specialist role in more depth please contact Sophie Cook at Procurement Heads by emailing your CV to or call +44 (0) 7387103143| +44 (0) 1962 869838. Enquiries are all handled confidentially.

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