Organisation UK SBS
Organisation Detail UK Shared Business Services Ltd
Reference Number IRC243116
Location Swindon See on Map
Salary £28050 - £28050
Date Posted 18 April 2018
Grade UK SBS-D
Contract Type Open Ended
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 30 April 2018
Interview Date

Brief Description

Salary: £28,050
Grade: D
Contract Type: Open-Ended
Location: Swindon or Newport
Hours: Full Time
Closing Date: 30th April 2018

The UK SBS Procurement directorate applies best practise procurement to deliver savings for our partners, using a professional and strategic approach. We work to deliver value for money while achieving commercial outcomes.

We are looking for Category Specialists to join our award winning Procurement directorate. The Category Specialist is key in contributing to the department’s savings target by providing support to the Category Manager. Within this role, you will be fundamental in supporting the Category Manager in the implementation of the category strategies, contract management and savings targets.   

The role Category Specialist within UKSBS is a developmental role as such all candidates must be, or will be willing to work towards a CIPS qualification. We are able to offer flexibility with location, this role can be based in Newport or Swindon.

Purpose & Scope of the role is to:

  • provide support to the Category Manager and to the wider team
  • manage business as usual procurement exercises and projects independently
  • manage complex procurement exercises with support from the Category Manager
  • contract manage existing contracts with support if required from the Category Manager.
  • assist the Category Manager with Category leadership activities
  • with support from the Category Manager, manage and develop key Supplier Relationships to deliver an exceptional service
  • prepare pre tender and tender documents.

Key responsibilities of the role include:

  • ensure that the defined best practice procurement processes and policies are followed to deliver maximum use of UK SBS systems and processes and optimise savings opportunities
  • communication with operational organisation to keep them appraised of relevant information and progress with projects
  • monitor supplier performance and help in the design, implementation and management of necessary supplier continuous improvement programmes
  • analyse expenditure and market data to identify opportunities for improvements in dealings with suppliers, quality improvements and/or cost savings
  • support Category Manager with cross-functional project teams in the planning and implementation of procurement initiatives
  • through partner and supplier forums, ensuring involvement of all interested parties in key decisions concerning procurement
  • delivery of procurement initiatives
  • sourcing a range of products/services
  • maintain records of documentation concerning contractual agreements and supplier communications within area of responsibility and in accordance with Government guidelines and legislation
  • monitor performance against contracts and design appropriate strategies with the Category Manager to improve supplier performance if required/appropriate
  • operate within a category management structure
  • deliver fully auditable savings as per targets within your area of responsibility
  • ability to manipulate and analyse data using appropriate tools
  • develop close co-operative relationships with internal partners in order to: leverage their expertise, understand local market conditions, support their specific aims and objectives, and deliver value adding services and agreements
  • e-sourcing supporting activity
  • supporting Category Manager with any ad-hoc and strategic activities
  • gather and analyse internal and external data relating to procurement activity across the supplier base to gain an understanding of purchasing trends and spend profiles
  • analyse expenditure and key business drivers within area of responsibility. Identify opportunities for improvement in procurement processes and supplier dealings to deliver cost savings and service enhancements
  • manage continuous supplier improvement programme.

Organization Description

The UK Shared Business Services Ltd (UK SBS) is an organisation whose purpose is to support their clients by allowing them focus their resources on doing what they do best; we do this by providing the following range of professional business services to our clients:
  • Human Resources & Payroll
  • Finance
  • Procurement
  • Information Technology

Our clients include the UK’s seven Research Councils (RCUK), the Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BEIS) and Partner Organisations.

At UK SBS, service excellence means more than completing transactions; the organisation has been set up to deliver added value for our clients. This means our people make a big contribution to the value we offer through specialist knowledge and high standards of service.

Shortlisting criteria:


  • previous procurement experience with an good understanding of EU Directives or similar
  • good analytical skills
  • experience and knowledge of procurement processes in the Public Sector
  • experience supporting the Category Manager with the preparation and management tenders & contracts
  • proven experience of providing support in supplier management and development often gained as a buyer or a procurement junior/trainee
  • experience in the use of e-Procurement Tools, purchasing platforms, Market Intelligence, Supplier Performance and Spend data to inform and drive Category strategies
  • specific detailed experience of working within a Category Management approach
  • experience supporting a Category Manger in the delivery of best practice procurement, ensuring processes and policies are followed to deliver maximum use of e-Procurement Systems and processes and optimise savings opportunities through:
    • agreeing objectives and critical areas of spend with key stakeholders and strategic suppliers
    • competitive tendering, supplier base consolidation, ethical contract practices etc.
    • the use of e-Procurement Tools to gather Market Intelligence and Supplier Performance and Spend data to inform and drive Category strategies.


  • further experience supporting a Category Manger in the delivery of best practice procurement, ensuring processes and policies are followed to deliver maximum use of e-Procurement Systems and processes and optimise savings opportunities through
    • market developments
    • managing continuous supplier management and improvement programme.

UK SBS offers a competitive salary, defined pension scheme and 28 days annual leave rising to 30 days after 2 years of service. Additional benefits include lifestyle and health care benefits, childcare vouchers, season ticket loans and possible learning and development opportunities.

UK SBS is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from all sections of the community. We would like to see the number of people with disabilities and those from ethnic minorities increase as a proportion of our workforce and so their applications are particularly welcome. At UK SBS, we value the diversity of our employees and strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability.

Candidates will be reviewed and interviewed on an on-going basis. We reserve the right to close this vacancy early and so early applications are encouraged.

Only online applications will be accepted and should be submitted in the form of an up-to-date c.v. and covering letter (ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the file name description of each document uploaded), which clearly outlines why you are applying for this post and how you meet the criteria described in this advertisement. Please note that applications submitted without a covering letter, or which fail to address these points, may not be considered further.

Applicants who would like to receive this advert in an alternative format (e.g. large print, Braille, audio or hard copy), or who are unable to apply online should contact us by telephone on 01793 867000. Please quote the appropriate reference number when calling.

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