Career Advice on How to Become A Wholesale and Retail Buyer

General Career Information

There is nothing quite as sweet as getting to buy a whole lot of stuff.  What is even better is buying a whole lot of stuff for other people.  That’s even better, right?  The exciting world of the wholesale and retail buyer is one that can be best described as follows.  You get to buy stuff, but never use or keep any of it.  Yes, it is like some perverse version of a dream come true.

Career Facts:

Working as a purchasing manager or purchasing agent means that you will spend your time buying all sorts of goods for institutions and businesses.  To this end, you will need to try and negotiate the best deal possible for a given good.  Failure to do so, especially in larger organizations, would cost serious an organization substantial amounts of money.  Yet, price point isn’t the only consideration.  Quality of the goods purchased and the reliability of the supplier are only two additional key factors.

Wholesale and retail buyers, much like the name indicates, focus on the purchasing of consumer goods for the purpose of reselling to the public.  These goods can range from electronics to durable goods to clothing or almost anything the public might purchase.


Career Opportunities and Job Outlook- Average:

The career outlook for the wholesale and retail buyer is expected to be about seven percent between now and 2018.  This puts the occupation roughly in the average category for job growth.
Job Outlook is Fair

A Day in The Life:

Is this a fun job?  Well now that does depend upon your perspective.  How much fun do you feel that buying vast amounts of goods for other people and businesses would be?  Yes, working as a wholesale and retail buyer is much like working as a bank teller in that you get to see all the good stuff and even touch it, but none of its yours.  If you think you can deal with this underlying, unspoken sadness, then a career as a wholesale and retail buyer awaits you.

Average Salary:

The average salary for a wholesale and retail buyer is in the neighborhood of about $49,000 per year, with the top ten percent earning around $90,000.



Career Training and Qualifications:

So what else do you need to know before the career planning and job search begins?  A college degree with a focus of some sort in business is generally looked at as a plus for those looking to get into the field.  Manufacturing companies will often look for applicants with a background in economics or engineering.  Often a master’s degree is required.  Wholesale and retail buyers typically begin working in other areas of the “purchasing game” as the hip insiders like to call it, before moving on to becoming a full-fledged wholesale and retail buyer.
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