Tentative Classification Standards issued by the Division of Classification & Compensation are shared with the operating agencies of State government for their consideration and comment. Accordingly, this document that you are viewing is subject to change and will be issued in final form at the completion of the review period.


  Occ. Code 1803100








New York State Department of Civil Service

Classification Standard



Positions in this series are responsible for the purchase of a wide variety of supplies, materials, equipment and services required by State agencies and institutions. Purchasing activities are governed by New York State’s laws, rules, regulations and policies administered by the Office of General Services, and Office of the State Comptroller.



Purchasing Agents are distinguished by the volume and value of purchasing activity, and the size and level of subordinate staff.


ASSISTANT PURCHASING AGENT: full performance level; responsible for all or a major part of an agency’s purchasing program; reviews purchase requests for compliance with State laws and contracts; prepares specifications for the purchase of items and supplies; and, may supervise clerical and support staff.


PURCHASING AGENT: first supervisory level; supervises Assistant Purchasing Agent or a small clerical staff; responsible for a greater variety and value of purchasing activity than Assistant Purchasing Agent under the general direction of a Senior Purchasing Agent or related title.


SENIOR PURCHASING AGENT: second supervisory level; plans, directs, and supervises a large purchasing program; supervises multiple Purchasing Agents under the general direction of higher level contracts or finance related title.


Contract Management Specialists negotiate, develop, prepare, review, implement, process, track and provide fiscal and administrative oversight of contracts.  They audit and process contract claims and vouchers, and approve and review contract payments to ensure that the payments are in accordance with contract terms.  Incumbents may also provide technical assistance related to New York State’s laws, rules, regulations and policies on contract administration to State agency staff, individuals, or organizations.


Office Assistants 2 and 3 (Calculations) spend most of their work time performing mathematical operations, and/or clerical activities related to mathematical operations, in the service of agency or program functions. These activities may include creating spreadsheets, using calculators, and other means of performing calculations.  The positions’ duties may incorporate, but are not limited to, financial (including record-keeping, bookkeeping, and reconciliation activities), purchasing, or statistical functions.  The third level performs as the head of a clerical operation, typically functioning as second-level supervisor.





·       Review purchase requisitions to ensure conformance with appropriate rules, regulations and agency procedures and policies.

·       Discuss purchase requisitions with the appropriate agency representative or program administrator to obtain estimates of usage, required delivery dates and any other factors which may affect agency needs.

·       Review inventories, manufacturers' catalogs and all other available sources to determine the availability of the requested items and alternatives.

·       Select the most appropriate method of procurement considering New York State’s purchasing guidelines.

·       Send draft specifications to program administrators or agency representatives for their approval and negotiate appropriate changes.

·       Prepare bid proposals and other written materials to be used in soliciting bids.


·       Complete or direct the completion of the appropriate forms for all items to be procured through contracts.

·       Based on specifications, review bids and recommend the award of a contract.

·       Prepare orders for the commodities or services as indicated on the specifications.

·       Certify that commodities or services ordered are delivered as requested in accordance with specifications and direct payment.

·       Review requests for stock supplies or equipment and determine procedures to be followed.

·       Maintain and update files for all purchases and compose reports for managerial review.

·       May supervise the activities of a small clerical staff engaged in the preparation and processing of purchase orders, the requisition of stock supplies and the handling of correspondence or personal contact relating to purchasing.



·       Review complex purchase requisitions for compliance with appropriate rules, regulations and agency policies and appropriateness within the agency’s budget plan. 

·       Determine the types of commodities and services available in the marketplace.

·       Prepare detailed specifications and complex bid proposals used for soliciting bids.

·       Schedule bid openings, receive and evaluate bids, and make recommendations of award.

·       Liaison with vendors and program administrators to describe the commodities and services required and advise in the development and revision of specifications.

·       Inspect samples of delivered orders for conformity to specifications and proposals.

·       Develop, maintain and review data base of items purchased, costs, delivery, product performance and inventories.

·       Review procurement records and related documents to ensure accuracy, completeness, and all mandatory requirements have been met.

·       Prioritize and assign purchase requests to subordinate staff.

·       Review the work of subordinate staff to ensure compliance with the appropriate rules and regulations.

·       Perform the full range of supervisory duties such as performance evaluations and time and attendance.

·       Train subordinate staff on new or revised laws, rules, regulations, purchasing policies, or procedures.



·       Manage procurement of agency needs and requirements for commodities and services, in accordance with appropriate rules, regulations and agency procedures and policies for the largest and most active purchasing programs.

·       Review and approve all purchase orders for commodities and forms to ensure compliance with the appropriate rules and regulations.

·       Lead and supervise negotiations of large statewide purchases.


·       Confirm accuracy and completeness of bills and verify delivery of commodities and services, and correct procedural and judgmental errors.

·       Communicate with program administrators to determine available funding and ensure compliance with the budgeted amount for procured commodities or services for a program when large or complex purchases are involved.

·       Prepare reports and cost analyses for managerial review.

·       Lead and supervise liaison activities with vendors and program administrators and all other required entities.

·       Obtain detailed information and explore availability of alternatives, relative costs, delivery dates and other factors relating to the procurement of commodities and services.

·       Contribute in the development and/or implementation of new policies, practices and procedures related to procurement.

·       Provide training to agency program offices on State and agency procurement policies and guidelines.

·       Build and manage cross functional teams to conduct strategic sourcing of high-value, complex commodities and services.

·       Perform the full range of supervisory duties over professional Purchasing Agent staff such as performance evaluations and time and attendance.

·        Deliver and direct trainings on new or revised laws, rules, regulations, purchasing policies, or procedures.




Open Competitive: Bachelor’s degree and one year of purchasing experience.


Promotion: one year of competitive service as an Assistant Purchasing Agent.


Promotion: one year of competitive service as a Purchasing Agent.

Revised:  9/18


NOTE: Classification Standards illustrate the nature, extent and scope of duties and responsibilities of the classes they describe. Standards cannot and do not include all of the work that might be appropriately performed by a class. The minimum qualifications above are those which were required for appointment at the time the Classification Standard was written. Please contact the Division of Staffing Services for current information on minimum qualification requirements for appointment or examination.