7 Best Purchasing Books Ever Written

In order to help you get career advancement in procurement, we evaluate top-rated books in this field based on 7 criteria to uncover the best purchasing books.

Do You Need Purchasing Books?

Historically, procurement and purchasing people are considered a kind of clerical workers who are expected to perform basic tasks such as document issuance and price negotiation. However, modern procurement and purchasing practices have become a part of the company's success to reduce costs, improve customer service and create innovative products. And now companies are relying on purchasing performance. Tim Cook who is known to have procurement and purchasing background has created the supply chain revolution at Apple Inc using the procurement purchasing process and strategy.

In order to establish a good career path in this area, lifelong learning is key and good books play an important role in your career advancement.

Purchasing Books Ranking

To come up with a list of top books, we collect data as below,

First, we collect the name of the books from Amazon.com.

Then, we remove books dedicated to logistics and supply chain, six sigma, lean manufacturing, inventory management, international business, fashion buying, and operations management from the list (only purchasing, procurement, sourcing and supply management books remain on the list.)

After that, we collect various metrics for the books, namely,

- Citation Counts: a basic bibliometric method showing how many times each book is cited by other publications. Citation counts indicate how well the books perform against its peers.

- Worldcat: a new kind of bibliometric method showing how many copies are stored in various libraries around the world (info can be retrieved from Worldcat.com) Numbers of copies indicate how useful the books are (in the eye of library staff.)

- Amazon Customer Review: numbers of stars the books get from the reviews available on Amazon.com. We use only positive reviews (3 stars or more) to evaluate a book.

- Sales Rank: this metric illustrates how well each book performs in the eye of the end-users. Books that are easy to read tend to perform better (a number close to 1 is better.)

- Number of Pages: this metric shows how comprehensive each book (the more is the better.)

- Number of Editions: how many times each book gets revised during its lifetime. We believe only good books get the revised edition(s.)

- Recency: "time since the last update" indicates how "fresh" each book is. Of course, this metric will not be used in isolation. We will exclude a book from the list if it doesn't have a revised edition at all in the past 5 years (we assume this kind of book is "obsolete".)

Finally, we compare the metrics of each book and select the best books based on overall performance.

In case the author produced more than one book, only the book with the highest overall performance will be included.

- The links below are #paid links.

Best Purchasing Books are as below:

  1. Purchasing and Supply Chain Management by Robert M. Monczka et al

  2. Purchasing Chessboard: 64 Methods to Reduce Costs and Increase Value with Suppliers by Christian Schuh et al

  3. Procurement and Supply Manager's Desk Reference by Fred Sollish and John Semanik

  4. Procurement Game Plan: Winning Strategies and Techniques for Supply Management Professionals by Charles Dominick and Soheila Lunney

  5. Category Management in Purchasing: A Strategic Approach to Maximize Business Profitability by Jonathan O'Brien

  6. Procurement, Principles & Management by Peter Baily et al

  7. Purchasing and Supply Management by P. Fraser Johnson and Anna Flynn

Our observation is that it's quite hard to find a good book about spend analysis.

Have you ever used purchasing books on this list?

- Cox, A. (1996). Relational competence and strategic procurement management. European Journal of Purchasing and supply management, 2(1), 57-70.

Books We Recommend

Supply Chain Books

Six Sigma Books

Operations Management Book

Inventory Control Book

Lean Books

International Business Book

Last review and update: January 30, 2020
All contents are written by Ben Benjabutr unless marked as [Guest Commentary]

About the Author and Editor:
Ben Benjabutr is the author and editor of SupplyChainOpz. He holds an M.Sc. in Logistics Management with 10+ years of experience in supply chain management. You can connect with Ben via Twitter, and Quora or drop him a line via e-mail.