26 August 2004
Purchasing managers have had the biggest salary increase of all procurement professionals with an annual rise of 8.3 per cent to £64,949, according to the latest quarterly survey by recruitment consultant Purcon.
By contrast, purchasing directors positions saw a 0.5 per cent drop in salary to £91,551.
The survey found the average salary stands at £37,062, a 2.5 per cent rise from £36,150 a year ago and a quarterly rise of 1 per cent.
Purchasers in north-west England and Wales lead the way with an average annual salary increase of 5.9 per cent.
However, purchasers there still make only 88.5 per cent of the salary for similar work in London, the lowest for all the regions.
Purchasers in the East Anglia were worst off, with a 2.3 per cent salary drop from a year ago.
Jerry Smith, director of Purcon, said while the growth in the average salary is "steady if unspectacular", increases are likely to be sustained.
In addition, the government's drive for greater procurement efficiencies will maintain a strong market for well-qualified purchasing professionals on good salaries.
But a public-sector senior procurement specialist or contracts manager handling a £20-50 million budget earns £40,032, which is 6.7 per cent less than the private sector. A senior public-sector purchasing manager with a budget of up to £150 million makes £56,879, 12.4 per cent less.
"Several years ago that was nearer 20 per cent. But they will have to eventually have to pay private sector salaries.
"I expect the gap to close by about 2 per cent a year," said Smith.