Commercial Procurement & Supply

The work of commercial professionals in procurement and supply includes the process of buying goods and services, however a much broader role is also applicable.

In addition to buying goods and services, the duties of a commercial professional may extend to a huge range of commercial activity such as influencing commercial policy, financial analysis, engaging in contract law, and developing strategy to deliver public services. Typical job roles include, but are not limited to: Commercial Support, Commercial Analyst, Sourcing Executive, Procurement Operations Support, Buyer, Assistant Buyer, Commercial Relationship Support, Commissioning and Performance Monitoring Officer.

Typically this apprenticeship will take 24 months to complete.

Encompassing the entire procurement cycle, achieving this programme will enable an individual to use their breadth and depth of experience to position themselves as a fully effective, commercially skilled professional with transferable skills and career options that span the public, provide and charitable sectors. On programme learning will consist of developing skills and knowledge by studying a CIPS Level 4 Diploma in Procurement and Supply through the use of 25 day-release classroom sessions (5 sessions per unit/unit group) delivered by an industry experienced, CIPS qualified tutor.

Entry requirements for this standard will be decided by each employer, other requirements typically include candidates who demonstrate skills from the ability to liaise, negotiate, and undertake proactive actions with suppliers, to confidently using appropriate software to convey this information. Commercial professionals must behave in a positive and professional manager, and must be responsible, innovative, and seek out opportunities to effect change. Those candidates without a level 2 qualification in English or maths must achieve this before accessing the end-point assessment. Units for the CIPS diploma include:

L4M1 Scope and influence of procurement and supply
L4M2 Defining business need
L4M3 Commercial contracting
L4M4 Ethical and responsible sourcing
L4M5 Commercial negotiation
L4M6 Supplier relationships
L4M7 Whole life asset management
L4M8 Procurement and supply in practice

The candidate can only enter gateway when the CIPS Diploma, English and maths, and the title and scope of the project has been agreed by the end-point assessment organisation and employer. The written project will consist of 5000 words (+ or – 10%) and the end-point assessment will assess this project report, along with a panel interview. Time for writing the project report will be allotted in the final half of the on-programme assessment time, allowing 4 months for the end-point assessment process bringing the total qualification time to 24 months.