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Want to Become a Purchasing Agent? Here’s What You Need to Know

Air cargo services are necessary for managing and controlling the flow of goods, energy, information and other resources like products, services and people from the source of production to the final sales destination.

On a yearly basis, the air cargo industry plays an important role in the economy. According to IBIS World research, the air cargo industry generated more than $75 billion in revenue by the end of 2013. In 2012 alone, the global aviation industry transported approximately $6.4 trillion worth of cargo.

It’s not hard to see why. The short transpiration time air cargo provides decrease the risk of damage to products and ensures a higher quality product delivery. Air freight services also tighter control over their cargo shipping processes because they are very time sensitive.

At the heart of the management and control of the flow those goods are purchasing agents. So what is a purchasing agent?

Purchasing agents consider variables such as quality, price, technical support and reliability when selecting supplies and merchandise for organizations to use and sell. Purchasing agents evaluate suppliers, negotiate contacts and review the quality of products.

To find great purchasing agents in the USA, candidates must possess several qualities.

  • Purchasing agents must be good negotiators and good communicators. When it comes to forming relationships with vendors and clients, purchasing agents must be adept at dealing with both parties, essentially playing the middle man to both sides.
  • Purchasing agents must also be adaptable in an ever-changing industry and must be willing to go the extra mile for a client.
  • Purchasing agents must be jacks-of-all-trades and equally knowledgeable about a lot of topics. From purchasing to logistics to negotiation to shipping, purchasing agents’ responsibilities are many and the agents must know it all and be very good at all of those skills.

    • For those wanting to become purchasing agents in USA, purchasing agent training is available. Purchasing managers typically need a bachelor’s degree and some training. Buyers and purchasing agents usually offer on-the-job-training for rookie agents to get their feet wet. This training allows up-and-coming purchasing agents to learn to negotiate, monitor inventory and learn other duties associated with the job.

      For those wanting to become purchasing agents in USA, there are several other factors to consider:

      • The median pay for purchasing agents in USA was $66,610 per year.
      • As of 2016, there were more than 500,000 jobs in the industry.
      • The job outlook for the industry is expected to decrease by 3 percent between 2016 and 2016, approximately 17,000 jobs.
      • Most purchasing agents work full time, usually 40 hours a week.
      • Certain certifications are available within the industry and a master’s degree is sometimes required for higher-level jobs.

        • Are you interested in becoming a purchasing agent? The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a helpful outlook at the ins and outs of the industry and what prospective agents can expect.

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