Category Manager

Purchasing  - Full-Time
Warehouse: 171 Weidner Road Rochester, NY 14624, USA

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Our Purchasing Team is expanding!  The Category Manager reports directly to the Purchasing Manager and is responsible for the growth, development, and maintenance of their assigned product categories. The individual will also be responsible for procuring product based on sales demand, market trends and availability by creating and administering purchase orders. 

Role & Responsibilities                            

  • Partners with the sales force to grow business, identify opportunities, and ensure that the company has the correct product mix at the most competitive pricing to garner market share.
  • Develops broker/vendor relations to ensure the best products, pricing, and quality are available to the sales force.
  • Creates purchase orders and validates accuracy of pricing, freight, and expected delivery dates.
  • Works with the Accounting department to verify invoice pricing. Resolves any pricing discrepancies with the manufacturer or broker in a timely fashion.
  • Reviews inventory status reports to helps maintain inventory levels and turns according to budget goals for assigned vendors.
  • Ensures service levels (stock levels with subs) maintained at budgeted levels.
  • Monitors and acts on slow moving and dead inventory by working with manufacturer reps/brokers and our sales team to solve issues.
  • Works with Purchasing and Vendor Relations Managers to eliminate slow moving SKU’s and to drive business to our preferred vendor partners.
  • Works with our internal computer system to monitor goals and margins.
  • Verifies order information, vendor/broker contact information, pricing, and item information for all assigned vendor lines.
  • Reviews margin reports and investigates sales below acceptable levels with Purchasing Manager and Sales Team to determine cause and correct any identified issues if possible.
  • Selects items from categories to participate in weekly fliers as well as seek promotional allowances from vendors to drive category sales and margins.
  • Attends and participates in team meetings, & sales meetings/events as required.
  • Reviews and updates Project & Plans worksheet with Purchasing Manager monthly.
  • Initiates and schedules Work Alongs with the Sales Team with a target of 1-2 per month.
  • Stays informed and up to date on markets/supply chain relevant to your categories/product line. Uses that information to updates Palmer Market Information Blog (Tumblr) weekly with current market information.

Qualifications & Education Requirements

  • 3 years of food related purchasing experience required. Previous food distribution experience preferred.
  • Associates degree in business or related field, or equivalent field experience required. Bachelor’s degree preferred.
  • Proven ability to manage multiple, time-sensitive projects and competing priorities simultaneously, work independently, and drive projects to completion with minimum guidance and high attention to detail.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite, including Excel, Outlook, and Word.


Skills Preferred

Analytical: Intermediate

Communication Skills:  Advanced

Detail Orientated: Expert

Behaviors Preferred

               Thought Provoking: Capable of making others think deeply on a subject

               Team Player: Works well as a member of a group

               Detail Oriented: Capable of carrying out a given task with all details necessary to get the task done well


Motivations Preferred

               Goal Completion:  Inspired to perform well by the completion of tasks          

               Self-Starter:  Inspired to perform without outside help

Education Preferred

                High School or better


Palmer Food Services is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We consider all applications for all positions without regard to race, religion, creed, color, sex, age, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, transgender status, gender dysphoria, marital or family status, pregnancy, military status, veteran status, predisposing genetic characteristics or carrier status, arrest or conviction record, domestic violence victim status, or any other protected class or status. Applicants requiring a reasonable accommodation to participate in the application and/or interviewing process should notify an organization representative.

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