What Does a Director of Materials Management Do?

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  • Written By: Nick Mann
  • Edited By: Jessica Seminara
  • Last Modified Date: 01 April 2020
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The role of a director of materials management is to oversee the purchasing department of a business. These individuals are experts at managing expenses and strive to find the best possible deals on the goods that a business buys. Generally speaking, a person must have at least a bachelor's degree in business management or a related area to get into this field. While the specific type of industry that a director of materials management works in can vary, his primary job duties remain the same. These include managing the purchasing department, keeping track of data, improving warehouse practices and attending meetings.

Managing a company's purchasing department is one of the most fundamental duties of a director of materials management. For example, if he is working for a retail chain, he would be in charge working with different vendors to supply his store with all the necessary products to run the business. Essentially, it's up to him to find the best deals on quality goods at the lowest possible price. In the case of smaller businesses, he may handle this exclusively. On the other hand, in larger businesses, he may supervise individual department leaders who work with numerous vendors.


In order to optimize revenue and decrease expenses, a director of materials management will usually perform ongoing vendor research. He may also be responsible for negotiating business deals and maintaining open communication with vendors. Consequently, this position requires someone with excellent interpersonal skills and effective negotiating skills.

Another important part of this job involves keeping track of data. To maximize a company's purchasing efficiency, it's necessary for a director of materials management to be aware of how much money is being spent on goods and how much revenue is being generated in return. As a result, he might input this information into a software program and generate charts or graphs that depict the relationship between material expenses and income.

Along with this, a director of materials management may work to improve warehouse practices. For example, he might evaluate the current methods of unloading and storing goods and propose new techniques to increase organization. He may also perform periodic inspections to make sure that a warehouse meets safety standards.

In addition, an individual in this position will usually be required to attend company meetings. During these meetings, a director of materials management might discuss things like new vendor relationships and the amount of money spent on goods. He may also collaborate with other department supervisors to discuss overall revenue and whether any changes need to made in relation to purchasing goods.


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