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Category Manager

Date: Mar 18, 2019

Location: Columbia, MD, US, 21044

Company: W. R. Grace & Co.

Requisition ID: 2328 

Built on talent, technology, and trust, Grace is a leading global supplier of catalysts and engineered materials. The company’s two industry-leading business segments—Catalysts Technologies and Materials Technologies—provide innovative products, technologies, and services that enhance the products and processes of our customers around the world. Grace employs approximately 3,900 people in over 30 countries.

Job Description

As a part of the Strategic Sourcing Team, this position will manage indirect or direct categories to establish short and long-term strategies for continued cost optimization, value improvement, supplier relationship development, and risk mitigation.  This role will be responsible for developing strategic category plans as well as sourcing, negotiating, contracting, and managing supplier performance, while delivering finished goods or services on time with a high degree of quality. Responsibilities include:


  • Establishes and executes category strategies.
  • Analyzes data or insights to determine industry, material or category trends, devises long-term development strategies for materials or categories.
  • Leads supplier performance management through the negotiations of procured materials, goods or services to assure optimal TCO (Cost, Quality, Delivery, and Innovation) achieved while mitigating risk to the Organization. Where necessary, sources and qualifies alternate sources of material or services to mitigate risk.
  • Engages with senior procurement personnel and partners with key internal and external stakeholders to ensure category alignment with global/regional strategies.
  • Communicates results and recommendations to supply chain leadership on an ongoing and as-needed basis.
  • Participates in the financial planning and forecasting process as well as provides relevant global market information and dynamics to internal stakeholders.

Required Skills

  • Strong communication skills, with a proven ability to understand key role concepts and communicate with business stakeholders.
  • Strong organizational skills, as well as the ability to perform in a command-and-control role under pressure and manage multiple priorities with competing demands.
  • Strong negotiation, strategic analysis, conflict resolution, data-processing and problem-solving skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop relationships with stakeholders
  • Proficiency in process formulation and continuous improvement.
  • Proficiency using PC-based applications (such as Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, Word and/or Access).
  • Ability to utilize mathematical/statistical modeling, analysis and simulation tools to draw conclusions to optimize costs.



  • Ability to travel up to 10% to include international.
  • Membership in professional organizations, trade or user groups, and a pattern of regular attendance at industry conferences to enhance their knowledge of supply chain sourcing and procurement, desired.

Required Experience

  • B.S. in operations, supply chain management, business, engineering, or science. 
  • 7+ years’ work experience in a global industrial/manufacturing environment with at least 5 years’ experience in sourcing and procurement. 
  • Indirect and/or Direct strategic sourcing experience.
  • Demonstrated experience with make vs. buy decision-making.
  • Experience working within supply chain functions with proven leadership capability.
  • Demonstrated experience working with multiple partners to resolve exceptions and negotiate best alternatives.
  • Demonstrated experience with enterprise technology applications (such as SAP, Ariba (preferred), SharePoint) that enable sourcing and procurement execution and reporting.
  • Has successfully worked in a team-based environment.

Preferred Qualifications

  • BS in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or experience with chemical sourcing. 
  • Master’s degree in operations, supply chain management, business.
  • Supply chain or Procurement certification (CPSM, CSCP, CPIM, CFPIM).
  • Work experience within an integrated supply chain environment.
  • Experience with MRO, Safety Supplies, EH&S, Metals commodity management, or minable materials strategic sourcing experience.

Grace is not accepting unsolicited assistance from search firms for this employment opportunity. Please, no phone calls or emails. All resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at Grace via email, the Internet or in any form and/or method without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of Grace. No fee will be paid in the event the candidate is hired by Grace as a result of the referral or through other means.

Nearest Major Market: Baltimore