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Senior Category Specialist, Category Management

National Grid

National Grid

Waltham, MA, USA
Posted on Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Senior Category Specialist, Category Management


Waltham, MA, US, 02451 Syracuse, NY, US, 13202 Brooklyn, NY, US, 11217

Job Type: 
Requisition Number:  47877
Department:  Global Procurement
Job Function:  Procurement and Contract Management

About us


National Grid lies at the heart of a transforming energy system, spanning the US and the UK. Our businesses supply gas and electricity, safely, reliably, and efficiently to millions of customers and communities. But we also drive change through engineering innovation and by incubating new ideas with the power to revolutionize our industry.

As the world changes to embrace cleaner energy and businesses shift to operate in a more responsible way, we are leading that charge. We are focused on finding ways to decarbonize the energy system; from investing in renewable energy generation in the US, to building interconnectors to allow the UK to share clean energy with our neighbors in Europe.

At National Grid, we don’t just ask our people to deliver to the highest standards. We also support them to be the best they can be. We welcome and encourage applicants with diverse experiences and backgrounds. National Grid’s ambition is to drive, develop and operate our business in a way that results in a more inclusive culture. We are committed to building a workforce which represents the communities we serve and a working environment in which each individual feels respected, fairly treated, valued and able to reach their full potential.

National Grid is about to begin an ambitious capital projects and construction program designed to build the infrastructure to enable our renewable electric future. Projects include upgrades to transmission lines, substations and distribution network infrastructure that will support renewable energy and reliability initiatives and other programs.


Within National Grid’s US Procurement team, we are looking to expand our capacity and enhance our capabilities to contract for the materials and services required by this $30B program.


We are currently looking for highly motivated individuals with critical thinking skills who want to join a dynamic and fast paced organization going through a major transformation. If you are someone who’s looking to bring innovation, contribute ideas and play a part in renewing the global procurement organization we want to hear from you!


We are looking for people with skills & experience in the following areas:
•    Engineering & construction program management
•    Analytics & forecasting
•    Communication and change management
•    Strategic category management
•    Process optimization
•    Complex contract drafting and negotiation

We are looking for leaders and persuaders, for people comfortable with ambiguity, for people with the ability to analyze data and extract insights. STEM backgrounds & utility experience are a plus.

We will be hiring across a broad range of experience levels. National Grid has a hybrid working model. 

Job Purpose


Sr. Category Specialists at National Grid work with suppliers, stakeholders, and Procurement colleagues to run bids, negotiate agreements, and create purchase orders, with a focus on driving savings through effective sourcing strategies.


They develop and own key supplier and stakeholder relationships and are able to evaluate supplier risks and develop mitigation plans.


They are key members of our management teams, and deliver innovative thinking supported by detailed analytics, data science, market research, and subject matter expertise, to help our category teams and stakeholders make effective sourcing decisions.

US Procurement at National Grid is structured into five category teams: Electric, Gas, Corporate Indirects, Construction & Transformation. US Procurement is currently staffing for Senior Category Specialist Roles within the Electric, Gas, Construction, and Transformation teams.

Key Accountabilities



The following competencies are core to the Senior Category Specialist role:


Category Management

•    Develop Category Strategies - With support of the Category Manager, work with Stakeholders to establish clear business needs, apply forward thinking skills to establish flexible long-term category strategies with value options & clear supplier performance criteria 
•    Total Cost of Ownership - Evaluate and apply the concept of total cost of ownership (TCO) and supplier / contract switching costs to support decision making options 
•    Analytics - Utilize varied and complex data sets to identify new opportunities to drive benefits through the contracts E2E lifecycle 



•    Sourcing Events - Able to execute operationally, complex sourcing activities; able to implement more than one option: RFX, e-sourcing and reverse auctions 
•    Stakeholder Coordination - Develops and maintains relationships with business units and suppliers, and Legal
•    Bid Analysis - Analyzes responses to complex bid requests, points out commercial differences, and makes succinct recommendations in selecting appropriate suppliers for contract awards
•    Process Management and Improvement - Drive continuous improvement to identify and eliminate waste in the extended E2E Supply Chain.  Identify innovative Procurement solutions that provide cashable savings and process efficiencies for the organization. 
•    Savings Tracking - Analyze forecast trends and track category savings targets in support of Procurement and category team commitment and goals.


Strategic Sourcing Process

•    Strategy – Recommends and communicates sourcing strategy, progress, and results to supervision
•    Market Research - Conducts industry analysis and evaluates supplier performance
•    Build KPI - Builds appropriate supplier performance measurements (KPIs) into contractual frameworks 


Commercial Negotiation

•    Create Contracts - Conducts complex negotiations successfully under aggressive time demands
•    Negotiation Plans - Establish structured negotiation plans with clarity of desired outcomes, leveraging stakeholder input and support where appropriate 
•    Strategy Support - Provide support to team members in development of negotiation strategies
•    Understanding Counterparty - Has comprehensive understanding of supplier’s position, desired outcomes, and leverage points 


Supplier Relationship Management

•    Foundation Criteria - Identifies critical suppliers and creates appropriate engagement plans to ensure our Supply Chain risk profile and inputs to continuous improvement are proactively managed
•    Drive Value - Demonstrates a collaborative approach with supply base and develops integrated plans to drive appropriate value for business and customer requirements 


System & Analytics

•    ERP – Enterprise Resource Planning Ability to adapt to different ERP systems such as SAP, Power BI, Ariba, Spend Analytics 
•    Understands how to analyze large data sets and extract information for strategic decision making 




•    Bachelor’s degree (B.A or B.S) required; in supply chain, finance or business management, or STEM preferred. MBA, MS a plus.
•    Experience in strategic sourcing, contract negotiations and vendor management a plus, as is a strong working knowledge of ERP systems.
•    Successful completion of professional negotiation coursework preferred
•    The candidate must have strong interpersonal skills, specifically in communications across a multi-national and matrixed organization. Additionally, the candidate should be proficient in planning, project management, stakeholder engagement, and business analysis.
•    An equivalent combination of education and extensive subject matter expertise along with procurement process experience may be accepted as a satisfactory substitute for the specific education requirements listed above


More Information


Annual Salary:


UNY:  $78,000-$92,000

DNY:  $94,000-$110,000

MA:  $88,000-$103,000


Salary commensurate on location and experience.



This position has a career path which provides for advancement opportunities within and across bands as you develop and evolve in the position; gaining experience, expertise and acquiring and applying technical skills. Candidates will be assessed and provided offers against the minimum qualifications of this role and their individual experience.


National Grid is an equal opportunity employer that values a broad diversity of talent, knowledge, experience and expertise.  We foster a culture of inclusion that drives employee engagement to deliver superior performance to the communities we serve.  National Grid is proud to be an affirmative action employer. We encourage minorities, women, individuals with disabilities and protected veterans to join the National Grid team.  

Nearest Major Market: Waltham
Nearest Secondary Market: Boston