Purchasing Agent

County Of Sonoma   Santa Rosa, CA   Full-time     Accounting
Posted on November 9, 2023
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Position Information


Purchasing Agent description image
Bring your purchasing and procurement experience to the County of Sonoma and expand your career with SoCoPi!


Starting salary up to $65.66/hour ($137,040/year) and a competitive total compensation package!*

What We Offer

Working at the County of Sonoma offers expansive opportunities for growth and development, the ability to be a part of a challenging and rewarding work environment, and the satisfaction of knowing you're working to better our communities. You can also look forward to flexible work arrangements and excellent benefits* including:

  • Hybrid Telework - A schedule that meets the needs of our staff, department operations, and the communities we serve may be available depending on the assignment
  • Salary Advancement - A salary increase after 1,040 hours (6 months when working full-time) for good work performance; eligibility for a salary increase for good performance every year thereafter, until reaching the top of the salary range
  • Paid Time Off - Competitive vacation and sick leave accruals, 12 paid holidays, and an additional 8 floating holiday hours per year
  • County Paid Health Premium Contributions - 100% premium contribution for the majority of employee-only and employee + family health plan options
  • Staff Development/Wellness Pay - Annual benefit allowances of up to $2,000 and ongoing education/training opportunities
  • Post-Retirement Health Reimbursement Arrangement - County contributions to help fund post-retirement employee health insurance/benefits
  • Retirement - A pension fully integrated with Social Security
  • Paid Parental Leave - May be eligible for up to 8 weeks (320 hours) after 12 months of County employment

Join Our Team

The Sonoma County Public Infrastructure (SoCoPi) Department leads the way to a safe and sustainable community by planning, building, managing, and maintaining Sonoma County's investment in quality services and infrastructure. Their Purchasing Division is committed to ethically and efficiently procuring cost-effective goods and services on behalf of the County of Sonoma’s 27 departments and agencies. As an integral member of the management team, the Purchasing Agent reports directly to the Deputy Director of Public Infrastructure Administration and is responsible for planning, organizing, and directing centralized purchasing activities for the County.

The Purchasing Agent and their team of Assistant Purchasing Agents and Buyers work together to guarantee County compliance with laws, resolutions, and the directives of the Board of Supervisors. Additionally, the position:

  • Manages procurement activities for the County including oversight of various policies related to purchasing of goods and services. 
  • Directly supervises two assistant Purchasing Agents, including workload planning, directing assignments, training, and performance management 
  • Prepares and manages the Division's budget
  • Engages independent contractors and contracts for informal construction services
  • Analyzes performance and workload data to develop and implement efficient and cost-effective procedural changes, methods, and systems
  • Establishes and conducts periodic reviews of policies and procedures for the procurement of supplies, materials, equipment, and professional services
  • Confers with department heads and County officials to evaluate purchasing needs and legal requirements, and advises on current technologies, procurement procedures, sourcing strategies, and best practices
  • Investigates and resolves complaints from departments and vendors regarding products, services, bid protests, and contract awards
  • Coordinates the identification, distribution, and disposal of surplus County property
  • Serve as liaison to County departments to facilitate procurement of goods and services

To continuously evaluate and improve the quality of our service, SoCoPi's ideal candidate is a highly motivated, dedicated purchasing officer with public agency experience who can support a wide array of goods and services. They can quickly assess problems with a solution-oriented approach, set clear expectations, and tailor procurement solutions to the ever-changing department and County needs. Additionally, the ideal Purchasing Agent candidate:

  • Has extensive knowledge of the Public Contracting Code and California Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act (CUPCCA)
  • Is a seasoned negotiator, able to procure the best price and terms available in the market
  • Has excellent communication skills, and can effectively interact with vendors, staff, department heads, and County officials
  • Possesses strong analytical skills, expert judgment, and a commonsense approach to addressing daily challenges
  • Has a high level of integrity, a positive attitude, and the ability to lead without ego and diffuse difficult situations when they arise
  • Is proficient with purchasing and procurement systems
  • Possesses a nationally accredited procurement certification, such as the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM), National Institute of Governmental Purchasing-Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP), Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC) Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB), or the UPPCC Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO)

While the position’s hours are normally Monday through Friday from 8 am to 5 pm in an office environment, depending upon operational needs, the Purchasing Agent must be willing to work during emergencies and other critical events. The Purchasing Agent and their staff are integral to the effective operation of the County's Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Logistics team.

Bring Your Commitment to Public Service to the County of Sonoma

The County of Sonoma is the place to live, grow, and build your career legacy. When you join the County of Sonoma, you'll have the freedom to explore the beauty of our county - its picturesque coastline, majestic redwoods, historic towns, fine dining, award-winning wineries, and a wide variety of entertainment and cultural activities. For additional information about the beauty of our community and the valuable services and support that the County provides our communities, please visit sonomacounty.ca.gov and sonomacountyconnections.org.
This recruitment is being conducted to fill the Purchasing Agent position in SoCoPi, formerly the General Services Department. This employment list may also be used to fill future full-time, part-time, or extra-help (temporary) positions as they occur during the active status of the list. Qualified County employees who wish to be considered for future positions should consider applying to this recruitment.

*Salary is negotiable within the established range. Benefits described herein do not represent a contract and may be changed without notice. Additional information can be found in the Salary Resolution (SalRes) and our Employee Benefits Directory.



Minimum Qualifications


Education and Experience: Any combination of education, experience, and training that would provide the knowledge and abilities listed herein.  Typically, this would include a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with a major in Business Administration, Public Administration, Purchasing or related field; and three years of professional level, centralized purchasing experience in a large organization involving competitive bidding processes and complex and specialized commodity areas, in a supervisory position, with at least one year’s experience in a public agency. 

Certification:  Possession of a Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.), Certified Professional Supply Manager (C.P.S.M.), Certified Professional Public Buyer (C.P.P.B.) or Certified Public Purchasing Officer (C.P.P.O.) certification or equivalent; or within one year of employment, and as a condition of probation, employees in this classification shall obtain a national procurement certification accredited by the Institute for Supply Management, the Universal Public Purchasing Certification Council, or an equivalent certification by an accredited association.

License:  Possession of a valid driver's license at the appropriate level including special endorsements, as required by the State of California, may be required depending upon assignment to perform the essential job functions of the position.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

Extensive knowledge of: modern purchasing policies and procedures including ethics and standards of purchasing practices, quality control and value analysis techniques in evaluating vendor capacity, capability and performance.

Considerable knowledge of: communication skills and data collection techniques for establishing sources of supply, product and vendor information; principles and techniques of supervision and training; and automated purchasing systems, electronic commerce, and the use of other software applications used in procurement and overall program management.

Working knowledge of: principles and practices of public administration, supervision, management, and contractual law; principles of customer service; standard English usage and grammar; basic budget development and monitoring; automated purchasing systems and electronic commerce applications.

Ability to: train, plan, direct, organize, prioritize, supervise and review the work of purchasing staff; develop and implement procurement procedures, and prepare written reports; write and speak clearly and concisely; establish and maintain effective working relationships with elected and appointed officials, department heads, employees, sales representatives and the public; analyze situations accurately and develop an effective course of action; and evaluate bids and make awards impartially and objectively.

Selection Procedure & Some Helpful Tips When Applying

  • Your application information and your responses to the supplemental questions are evaluated and taken into consideration throughout the entire selection process.
  • You should list all employers and positions held within the last ten years in the work history section of your application. Be as thorough as possible when responding to the supplemental questions.
  • You may include history beyond ten years if related to the position for which you are applying. If you held multiple positions with one employer, list out each position separately.
  • Failure to follow these instructions may impact your competitiveness in this process or may result in disqualification.

Please visit Getting a Job with the County of Sonoma to review more detailed information about the hiring process, including the application process, examination steps, and department selection process.

Responses to supplemental questions will be scored using position-specific criteria. Please provide specific and detailed responses of a reasonable length to allow for a thorough assessment of your qualifications. Responses that state "See Resume" or "See Application" may be considered insufficient and therefore may not be scored.

The selection procedure will consist of the following examination:

An Application & Supplemental Questionnaire Appraisal Examination (weight 100%) will be conducted to evaluate each applicant's application and supplemental questionnaire for satisfaction of minimum qualifications (pass/not pass); and for educational coursework, training, experience, knowledge, and abilities which relate to this position. Each applicant will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Relevance of work history, related experience, and achieved level of education and/or training as described in the application and responses to the supplemental questions.

Candidates demonstrating possession of the minimum qualifications will be placed on an employment list in order of most qualified to least qualified based on the achieved score received in the Application & Supplemental Questionnaire Appraisal Examination. Scores may be adjusted based on such factors as the number of candidates, anticipated vacancies, past practice, and natural breaks in the scores achieved by this group of candidates.


A background investigation is required prior to employment. Candidates referred to departments for a selection interview are typically required to sign authorization and release forms enabling such an investigation. Failure to sign prescribed forms will result in the candidate not being considered further for that vacancy. Reference information will not be made available to applicants.

Additional requirements, such as successful completion of a physical exam, drug screen, etc., may apply, depending on the duties and responsibilities of the position. If you receive a conditional job offer for the position, the requirements upon which the offer is contingent will be outlined in the conditional job letter. You may also review the Job Classification Screening Schedule to determine the requirements for this position.


Applications are accepted online at www.yourpath2sonomacounty.org. Paper applications may be submitted by person, fax (707-565-3770), email, or through the mail. All applications and appropriate supplemental information as outlined in the job bulletin must be RECEIVED by the time and date specified on the first page of this job announcement. Applications received after the recruitment closes will not be accepted.

The County of Sonoma values diversity and is dedicated to creating a workplace environment that provides individuals with a sense of belonging. We are committed to having a diverse workforce that is representative of the communities we serve. The County is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer where all aspects of employment are based on merit, competence, performance, and business need.

HR Analyst: DP
HR Technician: EV