What are the core responsibilities of a buyer in an OEM?

In the automotive industry, there are few more important businesses than original equipment manufacturers (OEM). This term relates to companies that manufacture original parts for both new and old vehicles.

Working closely with the general public as well as carmakers, OEMs ensure that higher quality parts are filtered into the industry which can enhance vehicle value.

One role within these businesses is an automotive buyer. What are the core responsibilities of this position and what skills can help you become successful?

Establish supply agreements

In addition to managing existing relationships, automotive buyers need to be able to create new business contracts for the OEM. This includes understand the future model programs and where business can be sourced. While this is a task that takes time to develop, experienced automotive buyers know the market and where opportunities lie.

Supply agreements must be in the interest of all parties.Supply agreements must be in the interest of all parties.

Automotive buyers are also involved with improving purchasing processes and department developments so that it's easier to establish supply agreements in the future. As the automotive industry is always changing, these professionals need to always be aware of how their own processes can match the needs of the sector.

Manage suppliers relationships

Automotive buyers need to have excellent communication skills and be able to conduct themselves well in problem-solving environments.

OEMs work with a variety of suppliers across the country – and each relationship needs to be maintained with respect and clarity. As such, automotive buyers should have good communication skills and be able to work with different stakeholders both externally and internally.

This also extends to managing and resolving supplier disputes. There are going to be times where automotive buyers need to act as the go-between for the supplier and the OEM – ensuring the continuity of supply and mitigate price threats. 

Overall, automotive buyers need to have excellent communication skills and be able to conduct themselves well in problem-solving environments.

How to become an automotive buyer

One of the great elements of this position is that with certain skills and experience, candidates can find profitable careers in the automotive industry. This particular position is in good demand in Australia and comes with significant progression opportunities for top performers.

If you would like to know more about becoming an automotive buyer, what jobs are available or the services we provide in the automotive space, the Bayside Automotive team can help