University of Cambridge

Job Opportunities


Head of Group Procurement

The University of Cambridge is one of the foremost global Universities and one of the largest Universities in the UK. We are a renowned centre for research, education and scholarship, employing over 12,500 people. Our mission to deliver excellent teaching and research is supported by our Procurement function, who strive to ensure that the way we spend achieves value and delivers maximum positive impact to society, both now and in the future. We are now seeking to appoint an experienced Head of Procurement, who will play a critical role in initiating and leading the delivery of both incremental change and major transformation projects.

About the role:

As Head of Procurement services, you will oversee all aspects of the University Group Procurement Services, leveraging the University's £500m per annum spend and championing continuous improvement. Central to the role will be development and implementation of the University Group Procurement strategy, which aims to deliver significant year-on-year financial and sustainability benefits for the University and its Departments. You will work collaboration with research, academic, teaching, and professional services stakeholders within the University Group and beyond (e.g. Colleges, CUP, Cambridge Assessment, and research institutes) to jointly shape strategic plans to support the delivery of the University's mission. You will also:

  • Create and deliver a University-wide procurement and purchasing service model to support this strategy, for example, the five-year Strategic Procurement and Purchasing institutional change programme
  • Contribute to University and University Group governance (e.g. Procurement Strategy Group, Environmental Sustainability and Strategy Committee and Cambridge Advantage (University, Cambridge Assessment and Cambridge University Press).
  • Create, develop and maintain a robust level of subject matter expertise and support for the specific procurement and purchasing functions across the University Group

About you:

As the ideal candidate for this role, you will join us with:

  • Substantial background in a procurement management role, leading a team of procurement professionals working in a large and complex business or public sector environment, ideally in a research/scientific context.
  • Evidence of high-level personal contribution in complex procurements including responsibility for overall programme/project management, tendering and supply chain management
  • Experience of building effective relationships with senior stakeholders, with strong negotiating and influencing skills.
  • Strong commercial contract relationship management experience, with experience of mediating dispute resolution between suppliers and stakeholders.
  • Comprehensive, demonstrable knowledge of modern Procurement techniques; Value for Money; Whole Life Costing; Process Efficiencies; Internal & External Collaboration; Sustainability Market Testing & Outsourcing Methodology.
  • Knowledge and awareness of EU and other relevant purchasing directives and legislation (including knowledge of the Public Contracts Regulations 2006 and the Remedies Directive). Ability to guide through the process
  • Able to work within an environment where ambiguity, change and changing priorities and evolving objectives are a constant.

This is a fantastic opportunity to make a significant impact on the University's financial and sustainability goals. If you have the presence and personality to effectively represent and promote Procurement Services with a passion for sustainability and delivering value-for-money, we would love to hear from you.

How to Apply

Click the 'Apply' button below to register an account with our recruitment system (if you have not already) and apply online.

Once an offer of employment has been accepted, the successful candidate will be required to undergo a basic disclosure and a security check.

Funding for this post is available for two years. Applications are welcome from internal candidates who would like to apply for the role on the basis of a secondment from their current role in the University.

Interviews for this role are scheduled to take place on 15 June 2023.

Please quote reference AG36293 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Further information

Apply online