[LW609] | Coordinator, Purchasing and Business Development

[LW609] | Coordinator, Purchasing and Business Development

20 May
University of Waterloo

20 May

University of Waterloo



Term: 15 months

The Coordinator, Purchasing & Business Development is accountable for all aspects of Print + Retail Solutions’ (P+RS) custom order program, including sourcing, purchasing, pricing and inventory management of customized merchandise and promotional items, with a focus on university-branded apparel and supplies. The incumbent handles customer inquiries, provides order quotes and oversees order fulfilment and transaction completion. In addition, they work with the Manager, Business Development and Marketing to build and maintain relationships with campus partners and generate new revenue streams.


Custom Order Management

- Maintains a deep understanding of customer demographics and their wants and needs, in order to offer a relevant and compelling product offering that positions P+RS as the campus supplier of choice

- Conducts analysis of external competition in the promotional product sector in order to provide competitive pricing, appropriate product selection and excellent services

- Responsible for all aspects of the custom order program, including facilitating customer meetings, providing quotes, sourcing promotional merchandise, order fulfillment, and completion of transactions

- Provides relevant and timely quoting, purchasing, invoicing and logistics services to customers, taking into consideration tight timelines, budgets and order requirements, managing up to 50 separate orders at any given time

- Collaborates with the Manager, Business Development & Marketing as needed to ensure consistency and optimal customer service for customers

- Maintains a detailed database of current and completed custom orders including PO details, invoices, art files and quotations

Business Development

- Maintains existing relationships and seeks out new campus partners to expand Print + Retail Solutions’ revenue base

- Uncovers or proposes business opportunities by working closely with partners to understand their business, discovering and exploring opportunities to grow revenue

- Works with the Manager, Business Development and Marketing to enhance the custom order program by developing promotional materials to elevate the reputation of P+RS on campus

- Analyzes potential business opportunities by conducting market and customer research; studying benchmarks, best practices, customer strategies and business requirements;  and by evaluating options and priorities and/or removing barriers

- Identifies trendsetting ideas by researching related events in the sector, publications and announcements, and by tracking individual contributors and their accomplishments

- Regularly reports on custom order growth, and provides detailed reports on campus partner purchasing behaviours and areas of opportunity

- Works with the Manager, Business Development and Marketing to improve custom order processes and establish framework for custom orders and pre-order programs through wstore.ca

Purchasing & Vendor Management

- Collaborates closely with campus customers and partners on product assortment to meet customer needs

- When placing orders that include university branding, monitors and enforces the appropriate use of University of Waterloo registered trade-marks

- Develops strong understanding of specialized products and vendors for multiple course kits and Ridgidware store

- Responsible for sourcing, purchasing, pricing, inventory management and invoice reconciliation of Ridgidware store partnership with the Waterloo Engineering Society

- Oversees infrastructure on multiple course kits - bundling, pricing, packaging and provides retail sales knowledge on all kit components

- Researches, develops and maintains a database of vendors for product sourcing and for the development of University of Waterloo brand-specific merchandise and ensures that all vendors comply with P+RS and University of Waterloo ethical business practices and guidelines

- Negotiates prices and purchasing terms with vendors, with the goal of maximizing benefit for both P+RS and customers

- Maintains a deep understanding of evolving vendor offerings, production timelines, turnaround times, product knowledge, limitations and abilities and coordinates timely arrivals for time-sensitive orders

- Regularly monitors vendor performance, manages conflicts and disagreements, addresses concerns and makes recommendations regarding how bestto manage vendors when there are ongoing issues

- Attends trade shows, conferences and vendor meetings as required


- Establishes and maintains strong partnerships and relationships throughout the university and the affiliated colleges, to help P+RS achieve its goals, while ensuring that P+RS is represented professionally

- Works closely with the Manager, Business Development & Marketing to build and maintain new relationships and generate new revenue streams

- Works with P+RS Shipping/Receiving, IT, Marketing and Operations teams on coordinating kit building, order sorting/packing and in-store distribution

- Works with P+RS Shipping/Receiving and Central Stores to ensure shipment and invoice accuracy and timely delivery to customers and departments

- Assists as needed in other areas of the day-to-day operations including year-end inventory preparations and counts, supporting the development of marketing strategies, convocation services, and general customer service support

Customer Service & Leadership

- Commits to positive interactions with all customers and ensures that all customer inquiries are handled in a professional, timely manner; and in cases when customers should be redirected to other staff, the incumbent will ensure that the redirection is complete and that the customer is not left without service

- Provides customer service support to, and shares product knowledge with, customers and on- and off-campus partners in the W Store

- Models the values of the P+RS department in interactions with internal and external partners

- Assists in the creation of and adherence to P+RS’s standards of excellent customer service

- Provides coaching, training and operational support, along with functional direction and oversight, to Retail Operations staff as needed (e.g., POS support, inventory management, customer service, supervision), including periodically during weekends, evenings and at pop-up shops

- Reviews processes and policies, and recommends changes that will improve accuracy, decrease order turn-around time, provides potential for cost savings and increases overall customer satisfaction

- Contributes to goal-setting and strategic planning for the department and implements those goals both independently and as part of various cross-functional team


- College diploma or university degree in business, economics or administration, preferably with a concentration in strategic merchandising, supply chain management and/or retail operations (equivalent combination of education and/or experience will be considered)

- Formal training in customer service, custom quotes and design are an asset

- Minimum three years of experience working in a retail setting, with accountability for achieving sales goals and targets, gaining purchasing and/or merchandising experience, and providing customer service

- Requires 3 years of relevant experience in the Promotional Products industry or equivalent experience

- Business acumen, critical thinking and analytical skills

- Excellent written and verbal communication, interpersonal and relationship-building skills

- Intermediate knowledge of MS Office

- Demonstrated ability to use and learn new database and scheduling software(e.g., Visual Ratex, Point of Sale)

- Knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite would be considered an asset

- Demonstrated skill with purchasing, product analysis, inventory management, custom orders and business development

- Ability to work quickly and accurately, while remaining organized and paying close attention to detail, in a fast-paced environment

- Comfortable managing multiple simultaneous projects (e.g., several custom order accounts all placing order with concurrent deadlines)

- Knowledge and ability to manage duties, customs, brokerage, shipping and international exchange rates

- There may be unusual hours or schedules, extended weekend hours, or weekday extended hours with varying volumes of work at different times of the year

- Some travel may be required for trade shows and industry events

Equity Statement

The University of Waterloo is committed to implementing the Calls to Action framed by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. We acknowledge that we live and work on the traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee peoples. The University of Waterloo is situated on the Haldimand Tract, the land granted to the Six Nations that includes six miles on each side of the Grand River.

The University values the diverse and intersectional identities of its students, faculty, and staff. The University regards equity and diversity as an integral part of academic excellence and is committed to accessibility for all employees. The University of Waterloo seeks applicants who embrace our values of equity, anti-racism and inclusion.  As such, we encourage applications from candidates who have been historically disadvantaged and marginalized, including applicants who identify as First Nations, Métis and/or Inuit/Inuk, Black, racialized, a person with a disability, women and/or 2SLGBTQ+.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

The University of Waterloo is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. If you have any application, interview, or workplace accommodation requests, please contact Human Resources at [email protected] or (phone hidden), ext. 35935.

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