DPW Purchasing Manager

Location: United States

Department: DPW

Type: Seasonal

Min. Experience: Manager/Supervisor


The Purchasing Manager will manage the Purchasing and receiving teams to effectively source, purchase and receive the materials and services necessary for the construction and clean up of Black Rock City.  This role will also be responsible for maintaining the purchasing system, organizing material pick-up/delivery and facilitating material allocation to efficiently produce the Burning Man event.

The deadline to apply for this role is 6:00pm PT on Monday, April 24th, 2017.


  1. Responsible for assessing incoming purchase requests for priority and validity then assigning purchasing tasks to the lead buyer.  Purchasing manager will also act as buyer as necessary to insure quick turnaround of orders.
  2. Track orders from start to finish, i.e., material request to ordering to receiving to returns or reordering (if necessary).
  3. Establish and maintain reliable business relationships with local and nationwide vendors.
  4. Responsible for updating and maintaining the purchase-order (PO) system such that all transactions are tracked and accounted for.  The PO system is implemented as a custom FileMaker database.
  5. Assist the Business Services Manager to ensure the smooth functioning of the Purchasing Department and be available to fill in for the BS Manager on a limited basis if the need arises.
  6. Responsible for keeping accurate records and coding expenditures for all transactions performed on behalf of the DPW Purchasing Department.  Work with accounting to insure that this information is adequately captured and conveyed; this will include post-event reconciliation and reporting.
  7. Coordinate daily trips to Reno and surrounding area carried out by multiple Runners. Facilitate the Runner’s trips by mapping out the most timely stop sequence to maximize the capacity of each load.  Be available for calls from Runners to facilitate their transactions throughout the day.  Typically there are runs every day except Sunday while we are in Gerlach and Black Rock City.
  8. Check with vendors prior to runs to assess loads and availability.
  9. Track expenditures to ensure the quoted price is the price received/charged.
  10. Runs that come up last minute shall be dealt with in a timely manner that may require the Purchasing Manager to maintain unusual hours.
  11. Work closely with Receiving to ensure that orders are correct and if necessary work to rectify mistakes made by either Burning Man Purchasing or the vendor in question.
  12. Facilitate meetings with the Purchasing department as necessary.
  13. Work with the Gerlach Office packaging personnel and the Receiving manager to insure a smooth integration of package handling practices both in Gerlach and on the event site.

Additional Duties

  1. Develop an in-depth understanding of assigned projects, recommending appropriate changes in methods, materials, schedules, and procedures as needed.
  2. Provide purchasing guidance to Managers such as how to properly make purchase requests, spent-to-date reports and spending projections.
  3. Perform various other duties as assigned by the DPW Council or the BRC LLC.

Other Requirements & Responsibilities

  1. Attend DPW Managers Meetings and Black Rock City Staff Meetings.
  2. Familiarize yourself with, and act in accordance with, Burning Man’s staff policies.
  3. Maintain DPW related correspondence via assigned Burning Man mailing lists.  
  4. Contribute to the Standard Operating Procedure guides for the Purchasing dpt.
  5. Submit post-event feedback, including an Ember Report, according to the Burning Man Ember guidelines.


  1. Knowledge of Excel and basic office applications.
  2. Ability to work under stress and keep a cool head
  3. Comfortable talking on the telephone and radio
  4. Strong oral and written communication skills
  5. Knowledge of purchasing and receiving system a plus
  6. Knowledge of tools and construction materials
  7. Ability to supervise a small team
  8. Ability to work alone and with a team


Must have a valid Driver License, and an excellent driving record.


This position is largely sedentary but may require periods of lifting, bending, kneeling, squatting, and climbing. Some of the work will be in outside weather conditions and will be exposed to fumes or airborne particles as well as possible extremes in temperature.


This is a temporary, full-time position ineligible for benefits, working out of Gerlach, Nevada.

Burning Man is an equal-opportunity employer.

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