This position serves as a purchasing specialist and is responsible for the acquisition of Information Technology and the management of contracts and agreements related to hardware, software and professional services for client. This position focuses on the content of contracts, financials, and negotiations associated with the acquisition and renewal of IT assets and maintenance contracts. The incumbent is also responsible supporting and enhancing internal purchasing processes, as well as vendor management with our preferred supplier base.
- Works with S&BE department and other business unit personnel to help identify appropriate levels of support and maintenance for clients Information Technology platforms and leads negotiations with vendors to obtain favorable contractual terms and acceptable levels of service.
- Works with Finance to review budget for all purchases & support lease vs. buy decisions if applicable.
- Supports S&BE and Product Organization in efforts to identify, source, and acquire information technology assets, supplies, and services that meet specified needs and conform to clients IT architecture standards.
- Collaborates with both Legal and Information Security to ensure all contracts meet client standards for execution.
- Tracks expenses and assets relative to S&BE budgeted equipment, supplies, contracts and services. Expeditiously helps to resolve any budgetary or contractual discrepancies and provides input to the budget planning process.
- Works with S&BE department and Product Organizations personnel to provide information and recommendations relative to IT expenditures for budgeting purposes, as well as approved standards for the equipment, software, services, and appropriate vendor sources. Works with appropriate technical groups to provide input relative to procurement in the establishment of technology standards.
- Ensures that vendors meet or exceed established Service Level Agreements and works with vendors to resolve problems/issues. Maintains and revises as necessary processes related to vendor selection.
- Handles purchase and renewal activities associated large scale contracts that typically range in size/scope.
- Works to ensure the co-termination of maintenance when multiple purchases are made on the same product and from the same vendor at different points in time. This includes verifying the pro-rating of maintenance costs as provided by the vendor.
- Helps implement new vendor management program which includes, but is not limited to; reviewing KPIs and SLAs with current suppliers, creating vendor scorecards, collecting feedback from internal stakeholders on 3rd party performance.
- Makes vendor recommendations to internal stakeholders if there is noncompliance by a vendor and our path to replace (if necessary) with minimal impact to the business.
Education, Experience and Skills:
Associates degree preferred with some form of financial concentration such as Accounting or Business Finance, or Computer Science, or a High School diploma with equivalent work experience required.
3+ years in Information Technology or Purchasing position.
- Possesses a sound understanding of current technological environments and the component technologies.
- Has sound knowledge of business contracts; is proficient in information technology hardware/software support and maintenance agreements and terminology
- Possesses a good understanding of business objectives and is able to make suggestions to the business regarding IT purchases that will support their objectives.
- Possesses a detailed understanding of purchasing and AP processes and budget/actual reporting
- Possesses strong negotiating skills
- Possesses solid skills in accounting principals and financial analysis to assess discount levels, depreciation, lease vs. buy decisions, and Total Cost of Ownership. This includes a demonstrated understanding and working knowledge of the present value of money.
- Proficient in the use of Microsoft Excel for tracking and analyzing financial information.
- Exhibits good problem solving skills; remains controlled in a crisis situation.
- Ability to stay abreast of the current technology environment and future technology trends and uses that knowledge as a basis for making purchasing recommendations.
- Demonstrates ability to work independently or on a team.
- Possesses strong written and verbal communications skills and is able to communicate effectively and professionally with business users and internal departments.
- Ability to be a key contributor to projects and/or project teams.
Problem Solving and Judgment:
- The person in this position needs to track and remain cognizant of contract renewal periods in order to avoid lapses in coverage and service. This includes working with the vendor to maintain optimum discounting as well as co-terminating any new additions to the contract. Depending on the prior periods purchasing activities related to the product(s), this can be a complex process.
- Must resolve complex issues related to terms and conditions of agreements. This involves working with the attorneys in the clients Legal department and that of the vendor. Must use good judgment regarding what type of compromise can be made on these issues.
- Must conduct skilled negotiations with vendors for the purchase of hardware/software, maintenance contracts, etc. Uses judgment to determine what can be conceded in negotiations, what is reasonable to request from the vendor, and how to close a deal that is in the clients best interest
- Determines if support/service contracts relative to IT components, both hardware and software, meet clientl’s requirements. This ensures that the services for which client l pays are delivered as specified, and that they are adequate for the support needs of various groups within IS and the business.
- Upon careful analysis of clients requirements and the vendor’s ability to deliver the goods or service, makes a recommendation to management.
- Based on price and service negotiations, decides which vendor to use for a purchase, keeping in mind the value that the partner can provide to client. This position must be aware of the key players in the various fields of IT software and hardware and be able to solicit the correct information that will be used in the decision to purchase.
- Determines when vendor problems/issues need to be escalated to clients management. This includes situations where product quality/delivery is continually unsatisfactory, or terms of an agreement are not being honored by the vendor.