Chat with us, powered by LiveChat 47 Sourcing Manager Interview Questions

47 Sourcing Manager Interview Questions

by | Dec 6, 2017 | Recruiter Training, Top Echelon Blog

A client has given you a job order to find a sourcing manager. Now, you need great sourcing manager interview questions.

You need strategic sourcing manager interview questions to find the best candidates. You can do a phone or in-person interview to narrow down which candidates to send on to your client. You can also use the interview questions to help your candidates prepare for their interviews with your clients.

If your client wants help thinking of questions to ask candidates, you can send a list of potential questions.

So, what questions are appropriate for a sourcing manager interview?

Sourcing manager interview questions

The interview questions for your sourcing manager candidates will include both generic and position-specific questions. Below are questions that will cover both areas. Double-duty questions can help you and your client learn more about a candidate while speeding up the interview time.

Behavioral questions

Here are some behavioral interview questions you can ask. They are divided by category, so you can ask about certain behaviors and situations.

Conflict and interpersonal skills

  • Have you had a conflict with a boss? How was it resolved?
  • How do you handle conflict among your team?
  • How do you communicate with people who dislike you?
  • How do you maintain relationships with your co-workers?

Decision making

  • What steps do you take to make a decision?
  • What is the most difficult decision that you’ve made at work? How did you make your decision?
  • Have you ever made a decision at work that you regretted? Why?


  • How do you prefer to communicate with co-workers?
  • Was there ever a time when your communication failed? Why did it fail?
  • Have you ever given a speech or presentation for your job? How did you prepare? How did it go? Is there anything you would do differently?

Time management

  • When you schedule out your tasks, how do you decide what to do first?
  • Can you tell me about a time when you were behind on a project? What did you do?
  • How do you manage multiple projects at the same time?


  • Can you tell me about a problem you solved in a unique way?
  • How do you handle resistance to your ideas?
  • Has there ever been a project where your normal processes didn’t work? What did you do instead?

Experience-based questions

The following questions are about the candidate’s experience.

  • What experience do you have?
  • How have your previous jobs prepared you for this job?
  • Tell me about your management experience.
  • How does your previous education improve your job skills?

Management questions

These questions will help you understand the sourcing manager’s experience leading a team.

  • Tell me about a time when you were leading a difficult group. How did you manage them?
  • What is the most difficult part of being a manager?
  • What is your greatest achievement as a manager?
  • How do you motivate your team?
  • Describe your management style.
  • How do you choose goals to set for your team? How do you keep the team on track to meet those goals?

Position-specific questions

These are specific interview questions for strategic sourcing managers. These go beyond generic experience questions to help you determine how qualified and knowledgeable the candidates are.

  • What do you know about marketplace trends for this industry? What direction do you think the market is going for this industry? (The industry refers to the client’s industry.)
  • How do you predict shifts in market trends? How successful are your predictions?
  • How experienced are you at writing profit and loss reports?
  • What cost savings did you achieve at your last position? How did you reduce costs?
  • What part of this career stresses you the most?
  • Describe your negotiation skills and tactics.
  • How do you negotiate with a difficult supplier?
  • How do you work with a supplier who is unwilling to negotiate?
  • Tell me about a negotiation that went poorly? What went wrong? What would you do differently?
  • Tell me about your most successful negotiation.
  • How do you go about researching new vendors?
  • Walk me through your typical sourcing strategy.
  • What factors do you consider when making a purchasing decision? (This might include loyalty to a vendor, location, price, quality of the products, etc.)
  • Do you belong to any professional organizations?
  • What do you do for continued professional development in this industry?

Other common questions

Here are some other generic interview questions to ask candidates.

  • What is your greatest weakness?
  • What are you looking for from this position?
  • What are your professional goals?
  • What do you know about the company?
  • Why do you want to work here?
  • Why should we hire you?

Tips for interviewing sourcing managers

If you interview the candidates before sending them to your client, you might take some notes about them. The notes can help you remember which candidates you think are the best fits. Store your notes in an applicant tracking system for recruiters so you don’t lose them or forget which candidate they’re for. You can use information from your notes in candidate profiles to convince your client to consider certain candidates.

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