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Duties & Job Description of a Global Sourcing Manager

Global sourcing managers more or less oversee their company’s service and materials sourcing teams. These experts travel frequently both domestically and internationally, and are tasked with establishing and maintaining efficiency within the supply chain structure, as well as compliance with regulatory bodies and best practices standards.

What Does It Take to Become a Global Sourcing Manager?

To become a global sourcing manager in the United States, you are expected to have extensive experience with sourcing. Fluency with at least one language other than English is generally needed, with two or more preferred. You are also expected to have a considerable understanding of other cultures and excellent interpersonal skills are needed as well.

Global sourcing managers typically work full time in an office setting during regular business hours, although alternative and/or additional hours may be need, as this individual’s responsibilities extend across multiple time zones.

Note that to become a global sourcing manager, you need to acquire a graduate degree in business administration or a related field. Also acquiring a post graduate degree in the same field would be very beneficial to advance your career.

A good global sourcing manager is also expected to love commodity development, merchandising and marketing. He or she is also expected to have strong math and computer skills, and also possess acquiring, arranging, involving and creative skills.

According to reports, an early career Global Sourcing Manager with 1- 4 years of experience earns an average total compensation (includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of $84,840. A mid-career Global Sourcing Manager with 5-9 years experience earns an average total compensation of $96,282.

But note that an experienced Global Sourcing Manager with 10-19 years experience earns an average total compensation of $103,529. In their late career (20 years and higher); employees earned an average total compensation of $106,351. There are many responsibilities that a global sourcing manager executes, however their key duties include:

11 Duties and Job Description of a Global Sourcing Manager

  1. Create and administer an efficient global supply chain and monitor inventory for all global products and assist to increase growth.
  2. Monitor all sourcing strategies and policies and ensure achievement of all business objectives and perform appropriate negotiations with all suppliers.
  3. Coordinate with vendors on all prices of products and recommend ways to reduce costs of components and finished products and prepare non disclosure agreement for various sources.
  4. Work with marketing team and initiate appropriate changes to engineering team and manage all research and development process.
  5. Maintain all contracts and evaluate all performance according to contract and ensure efficient flow of all conditions in contract.
  6. Design and implement an effective sourcing strategy to reduce costs of financial products and manage all sourcing processes.
  7. Supervise all negotiations and prepare appropriate documents for same.
  8. Take care of all communication with global sourcing team and identify all standardized materials.
  9. Administer all commodity sourcing activities and coordinate with sourcing team to consolidate processes and select appropriate materials.
  10. Analyze customer requirements and prepare appropriate contracts and negotiate for all purchase materials.
  11. Establish new suppliers in various low cost regions of world.

5 Tips to Becoming a Successful Global Sourcing Manager

A global sourcing manager is known to oversee the sourcing steps adopted by people. If you want to build a successful career in this field, here are top tips to consider.

1. Have a good reason to go global

To succeed as a global sourcing manager you need to have a fully researched and dependable database of current costs. This is very important because the projection of the cost savings that will be achieved through efficient global sourcing is defensible. Data is required for documenting the business case which will ensure the full support of top management at the start.

2. Ensure you understand the people you are dealing with

Note that language, culture and behavioural norms tend to differ from region to region and even within countries. So doing business in a foreign language can cause misunderstandings and contractual errors. The more reason seasoned global sourcing managers always tend to research their suppliers’ backgrounds and history in depth before committing to any agreements.

3. Understand your cost commitments upfront

Have it in mind that a detailed projected cost model helps a forward-looking global sourcing manager to analyze more than just the base costs but also the add-on costs incurred through sourcing outside a country’s borders. These are the many freight charges, customs and excise duties, insurance and legal costs, finance costs and agency fees.

4. Stay realistic about time frames from source to market

According to experts in this field, the proximity of suppliers to markets always tends to influence transportation times. The global sourcing manager is expected to build in contingency time when confirming delivery dates as there are many world political and natural events that can disrupt deliveries. Also note that awareness of real time frames can have a positive effect on costs of inventory and logistics.

5. Always look out for the pitfalls and surprises

In the global sourcing business sector, physical hazards to the supply chain remain a primary cause of concern. Some of the problems reported were fires, accidents, ships sinking and boiler explosions. Damage caused by natural disasters such as hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, strong storms, and tornadoes were also some of the concerns these businesses faced.


The primary job responsibilities of a global sourcing manager include analyzing the given data and implementing the sourcing procedures, methods, plans and programs all across the world. Global sourcing clearly increases trading risks but with hands-on management and good preparation, it can be financially rewarding.

Have it in mind that a global sourcing manager that understands that anything can go wrong and has contingency plans will be successful. In the future, local sourcing will only render a company uncompetitive.