We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Does a Sourcing Manager Do?

By J. D. Kenrich
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
Practical Adult Insights is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At Practical Adult Insights, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Firms and enterprises of all descriptions typically require materials, products and assistance from external vendors to carry out their primary functions. Determinations must be made regarding how such goods and services will be acquired and the terms under which they will be obtained. A sourcing manager is a person engaged by businesses or other organizational entities to perform such contracting and purchasing functions. Though breath of responsibility in this type of role may vary depending on the nature of the employing company, a typical sourcing manager will identify appropriate suppliers, negotiate contracts, coordinate transportation and predict future company needs.

A primary goal of every sourcing manager is to secure the highest-quality raw materials, goods or services at the best possible prices. This requires continuous monitoring of market conditions and industry trends. Among the considerations sourcing managers must analyze are materials inventories, global demand and vendor quality. To make the most advantageous acquisition decisions, a savvy sourcing manager will need to stay abreast of supplier innovations, visit vendor facilities and participate in trade shows. Once preferred providers have been identified, contract negotiations may commence.

It is not uncommon for sourcing managers to wear more than one hat within a company. Many sourcing professionals also have management responsibilities in marketing, logistics, forecasting and manufacturing processes. The potential for expansion beyond the traditional sourcing manager job description suggests that continuing education and specialized credentialing are vital to the success of professionals in this field. Some of the designations available in the sourcing realm include that of certified professional in supply management, certified professional purchasing manager, accredited purchasing practitioner and certified supply chain professional.

Sourcing managers are employed by a wide range of corporate and governmental entities and, therefore, have varied work environments. Those who work for traditional companies and organizations typically enjoy relatively conventional office settings. Professionals employed by large manufacturers are likely to travel internationally on a frequent basis in search of the very best materials at the most competitive price. Interaction with other business units within the organization or corporation also may be necessary to understand precisely which types of goods, raw materials or external assistance would best facilitate the firm's overall goals. Successful sourcing managers also must acquire advanced knowledge of negotiation techniques and contract law so the acquisitions they oversee work to their employer's best advantage and generate increased efficiency and profit.

Practical Adult Insights is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By Animandel — On Jan 23, 2014

Sporkasia - Graduates are not usually hired straight out of school to become sourcing managers, at least not with any decent size company. Larger companies want applicants to have experience in areas that will help in being a good sourcing manager.

For example, a sourcing manager might start out as an engineer or as an employee in the research and development area. The position of sourcing manager pulls together experience from other positions.

By Drentel — On Jan 22, 2014

Sporkasia - I graduated college with a friend who took a job with a large manufacturing company as an assistant to a sourcing manager. Basically, she and other assistants handled certain projects while the actual sourcing manager oversaw all projects.

She didn't have any experience starting out--other than a couple short internships. She said if she had had to start as a sole sourcing manager for a company, she would have been lost, but once she was on the job a year or so, she gained a lot of confidence and really enjoyed what she was doing.

By Sporkasia — On Jan 21, 2014

Does anyone out there work as a sourcing manager or know someone who does? I am interested in the profession and liked what I read in the article. Though, sounds like the job has the potential to be overwhelming.

Practical Adult Insights, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

Practical Adult Insights, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.