Import Manager Job Description

Import Manager Job Description, Skills, and Salary

Are you searching for an import manager job description? Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of an import manager. Feel free to use our import manager job description template to produce your own import manager job description. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as an import manager.


Who is an Import Manager?

An import manager is a trade professional who is involved in the importation of goods into a nation and is responsible for overseeing the clearing of the goods. To make sure that goods are delivered on schedule and in acceptable shape, they collaborate with suppliers, vendors, and other parties. Relationship management with customs agents or other government organizations may also fall within the purview of import managers. The majority of import managers are well knowledgeable about the goods they’re managing. This enables them to spot any possible difficulties that might occur during travel and take action to address these concerns before they worsen. Import managers engage in tasks that centre on organizing, storing, and distributing supplies or goods on behalf of their employer or clients.

The post of import manager is important within an organization since it involves activities involved in the planning, storage, and distribution of goods on behalf of the business or its customers. A storage or distribution manager would fit this description. A very organized, business-savvy individual is needed for the Import manager position due to the wide range of responsibilities. A person with an outgoing attitude who is skilled in haggling with outside agencies and maintaining commercial relationships is also required for the job of import manager. As part of their daily supervision tasks at the home office, import managers must oversee the movement of shipments via complex worldwide supply networks. Freight forwarders, third-party logistics providers, major retailers, and manufacturers are among the businesses with import/export managers. Managers of import-export operations work in a setting that is extremely hectic and constantly evolving.

Numerous laws apply to goods that are traded across international borders. Import managers who are aware of these restrictions try to guarantee that international sales go off without a hitch. Coordinators of import documents oversee all the documentation necessary to ship items acquired through commerce in a timely, efficient, and, most importantly, lawful manner. Coordinators of import documents create and keep track of the documentation needed for trade and transportation of commodities. Orders are created and approved, and cost information and invoices are also recorded. To make sure that space is utilized properly and efficiently as shipments move in and out, they maintain warehouse inventory levels. To manage the delivery of goods and make sure that all governmental and organizational policies are followed, import document coordinators communicate with both workers and consumers. This is crucial when transporting materials with strict regulations, such as agricultural products. When a company has to import items, import managers frequently collaborate with other departments to make sure that they obtain all the required paperwork. They also need to comprehend how customs laws apply to their shipments and what paperwork they must give customs officers. A successful import manager must be well-organized because they frequently need to keep track of a lot of data, such as shipment details, invoices, and customs paperwork.

The typical educational background of import managers is a high school diploma or its equivalent, while bachelor’s degrees are increasingly becoming the norm. Experience in the workplace is essential, and most people have at least five years of experience in the import industries. They are also required to have management and warehousing expertise, and those who understand more than one language are in higher demand, especially if they can communicate in both written and spoken languages. A high school diploma or an associate’s degree is frequently necessary to work as an import manager. Many firms now want candidates with a bachelor’s degree in a subject like business, systems engineering, or supply chain management since logistics and supply chains are getting more complicated.

A bachelor’s degree will have taught an import manager about topics like database and operations management, supply chain, logistics, and system dynamics. They will also be able to finish courses on software and technologies that are frequently utilized in the sector. There are also numerous certification alternatives. None of those is required, but completing them demonstrates professionalism and a commitment to high standards.  You can gain the knowledge and abilities required to work as an import manager in a few different methods. Many of these abilities are developed through practical application, so getting a career in customer service or a related industry can be an excellent place to start. You may learn the fundamentals of import documentation, customs laws, and supply chain management from a variety of online tools and courses. To succeed in this profession, it is crucial to have strong problem-solving abilities and great communication skills.


Import Manager Job Description

What is an import manager job description? An import manager job description is simply a list of duties and responsibilities of an import manager in an organization. Below are the import manager job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write an import manager job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.

The duties and responsibilities of import managers include the following;

  • Manage all interactions with customers and vendors while ensuring that import department personnel are functioning efficiently.
  • Consider the specialized and technological requirements for the management and control of the goods and services that the organization sends out for delivery.
  • Ensure that all the supplies and goods are evenly distributed after being appropriately arranged.
  • Plan and carry out all import transportation strategies by supplier and customer demand, manage the internal movement of all items, and make sure all laws are followed.
  • Make sure that all international shipments arrive on time and that they are moved accurately together with the suppliers and inventory planners.
  • Ensure to get the best freight rates always.
  • Design, assess, and renew all contracts by requirements. Additionally, keep track of and prepare reports for all import activities.
  • Assist in creating all import quotations for clients and managing all carrier bookings for shipments.
  • Maintain compliance with all customs procedures while administering and implementing all customs and border protection for different security programs.
  • Create enduring business ties with suppliers to get favourable terms on essential products or services.
  • Analyze data to spot patterns that can point to a supply chain adjustment that is required for a company.
  • Control logistics to guarantee that goods are delivered as stated.
  • Negotiate pricing with suppliers to keep costs within the expenditure.
  • Work with marketing teams to create new goods or enhance existing ones depending on customer input.
  • Collaborate with the shipping department to plan the delivery of items from suppliers to a warehouse or retail location.
  • Manage the hiring, training, and performance evaluation of staff in the procurement department.
  • Manage inventory levels by ensuring that products are bought or produced in time to satisfy client demand or seasonality needs.
  • Work with the finance team to manage inventory of all products, conduct research for various departments on all import and export rules and processes, keep up with all tariffs and licenses, and analyze all loan and insurance paperwork.
  • Create all SOPs for the import department, guarantee compliance with all ISO standards, and create reports for submission to regulatory bodies.
  • Provide all shipping insurance, and create and carry out all process corrective action plans.
  • Work together with the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) team leader to audit procedures and to keep up-to-date on all customs requirements.



  • A high school/associate’s degree is required.
  • A graduate degree in finance, business administration, economics or a similar field.
  • A master’s degree in business administration or a related field is advantageous.
  • Previous experience as an import/export manager is required.
  • Years of experience in any management role would be an added advantage.
  • Business acumen.
  • Effective communication skills.
  • The ability to speak multiple languages is advantageous.
  • Thorough understanding of key trends and value drivers of the business, and consistent prioritization of focus and efforts.
  • Strong decision-making skills.
  • Excellent critical thinking skills
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Outstanding problem-solving skills


Essential Skills

  • Analytical Skills: You can evaluate a problem and choose the best course of action with the help of analytical skills. To choose which products and how much to import, an importer may need to conduct a market analysis. To decide which things to sell and how much to charge for them, you might also need to conduct a market analysis.
  • Decision-Making Skills: As an import manager, it is your responsibility to decide and choose which things to buy and how much of each item to order. Selecting the vendors with the highest value and quality is another important step. You must be able to make sound decisions to select the best solutions for your company’s requirements. When selecting what to do with surplus inventory or if a shipment is delayed, you also use decision-making abilities. For instance, you can choose to either wait until the original supplier ships their supply or sell the extra goods at a discount to make room in your warehouse.
  • Knowledge of Customs Regulations: The laws that control how things enter and leave a country are known as customs regulations. To ensure adherence to all relevant legislation, customs administrators must be educated on customs practices, rates, and duties. Industry-specific customs restrictions exist, thus import managers must be aware of any changes to the legislation. Customs managers should be well-versed in these documents as well, as customs regulations explicitly specify which paperwork is needed when importing products.
  • Organizational Skills: The ability to manage many activities and obligations is known as organizational skills. You may manage your time and responsibilities with the aid of organizational abilities. You might have to manage paperwork, plan shipments, and keep track of data. Maintaining a tidy workspace can be made easier with organizational abilities. A huge team that needs frequent contact and input may be under your management as an import manager. Strong organizational abilities can make it easier for you to assign tasks efficiently and make sure that everyone on your team has what they need to accomplish their jobs well. Additionally, you probably have a wide variety of files about the operations of your business; therefore, having strong organizing abilities will help you locate information quickly when necessary.
  • Supply Chain Management Skills: The ability and technique of controlling a company’s supply and demand activities are known as supply chain management skills. It entails determining the materials that are required, their source, and the best method of transportation. An import manager can benefit from having this talent since it enables them to plan and make sure their business has the resources it needs to run effectively.
  • Leadership Skills: As an important manager, you can inspire and lead your team with the aid of leadership skills. You could have to manage the tasks of numerous staff if you’re an import manager. You can inspire your team with your leadership abilities and make sure they finish their assignment on schedule. You can assign assignments to your team members and make sure they are focusing on the most crucial projects by using your leadership abilities.
  • Communication Skills: Another essential skill for an important manager to possess is communication skills. The capacity for clear and succinct information transfer is referred to as communication. Communication with clients, suppliers, and other team members may fall within your purview. Any modifications to the importation procedure at your organization may also fall under your purview. You might have to speak with staff members from other departments or international vendors as an import manager. You can more effectively communicate instructions, respond to inquiries, and handle problems if you have strong communication skills. Additionally, you can employ good communication skills to write understandable emails, letters, and reports.
  • Planning and Negotiation Skills: Negotiation skill is the capacity to convince people to accept your demands through gentle negotiations. You might have to bargain with suppliers as an importer to acquire the greatest deals on goods. To guarantee that your shipments are properly documented and you pay the relevant duties, you might also need to bargain with customs officers. Import managers need to be good planners since it helps them foresee the future and make sure they have everything they need to do their responsibilities. Additionally, planning enables them to decide what materials to order, how much of each material to order, and when to place their orders. Ensuring they always have enough inventory and only order what they need, can help them save money.


How to Become an Import Manager

Step 1. Education

A high school diploma or GED is often necessary for entry-level import managers. Candidates with a bachelor’s degree in business, economics, or a similar discipline are preferred by some businesses. Even though most import managers hold a college degree, becoming one requires only a high school diploma or GED. When looking into how to become an import manager, picking the right major is always crucial.

Step 2. Training and Experience

Typically, import managers acquire on-the-job training on the job, hence obtaining experience. The company’s software, systems, and importing and exporting procedures may all be covered in this training. Managers of imports and exports could also acquire training in the industry they specialize in. For instance, an import manager in the pharmaceutical sector may receive training on the rules and criteria for importing and exporting pharmaceutical products. You might discover that working in various positions has given you experience that will help you succeed as an import-export manager. In reality, many roles for import export managers demand prior expertise in a position like import manager. In the meantime, a lot of import-export managers also have prior professional experience in positions like operations manager or logistics manager.

Step 3. Certifications and Licenses

Although certifications are not necessarily mandatory to work as a professional import manager, they might make you a more attractive prospect when you seek opportunities. For people with suitable educational backgrounds and professional experience, certifications are available from the International Society of Logistics (SOLE) and the Association of Supply Chain Management (APICS).

Step 4. Career Advancement

Typically, import managers develop in their careers by taking on bigger and more difficult projects. As they gain expertise, they might also be given increased accountability for overseeing the budget and staff. Managers of import and export operations occasionally advance to higher management roles, such as vice president of international operations or director of international commerce.


Where to Work as an Import Manager

Import managers usually work for multinational businesses, although they may work in government agencies as well. A good number of them are employed in importation and exportation establishment, shipment, and logistics companies.  Some work in production and manufacturing companies, where they oversee the importation of materials required for the manufacturing of a product. Some are also self-employed, they work in their offices and are contracted when the need arises. When meeting with clients, suppliers, or other business partners, import managers may travel, but they normally operate in an office setting. Although they frequently put in extra effort to fulfill deadlines or attend meetings on the weekends or after hours, they normally work conventional business hours. The fast-paced nature of the job, the pressure to meet deadlines, and the possibility of suffering financial losses if shipments are delayed or damaged can all cause import managers to feel quite stressed. In the coming ten years, average growth is anticipated in the employment of import managers. The importing of goods from international vendors will require the supervision of import managers. Additionally, as American businesses grow overseas and want to save costs by obtaining goods from other countries, demand for imports is anticipated to rise.


Import Manager Salary

In the US, the typical income for an import manager ranges from $105,123 to $127,983. In Nigeria, the average monthly salary for an import manager is roughly 516,000 NGN. Typical salary ranges are 273,000 NGN at the lowest end and 784,000 NGN at the highest. The pay of import managers varies according to their level of education, years of experience, company size, and industry. Bonuses are another possible kind of compensation for them.

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