Associate Merchandise Planner/Allocator
The Associate Merchandise Planner supports the merchandise organization, partnering with the buyer, working directly with a Merchandise Manager. This position is responsible to develop annual sales, margin and turnover goals that tie to the annual goals of the company. Additionally, this position is accountable for the placement of orders, allocation of inventory to stores, maintaining adequate warehouse inventory levels, assortment planning and managing receipts that tie to the open to buy. This position will be trained in all aspects of merchandise planning and allocation while having direct responsibility for select departments. This positions requires advanced excel skills to support ad hoc reporting.
Key Role Responsibilities
- Create purchase orders and communicate orders to suppliers both domestic and import. Manage the vendor base in accordance with company standards, inclusive of building strong relationships and developing good negotiating skills. Ensure forecasts for select suppliers with longer lead times.
- Seasonal assortment planning for multiple size stores and the WEB. Rigorous process to review sales and inventory at item, store, and, warehouse level.
- Revise inventory levels to drive the business on a regular basis.
- Develop financial and distribution plans for multiple departments. Manage the inventory for the stores, web and warehouse.
- Manage the production process for Paper Source produced items. Order components from third party vendors, build plans for production, follow through on process, allocate finished goods.
- Cross functional business units include the production area which requires collaboration with all business partners to insure proper levels of component stock. Weekly review of component stock to support production needs
- Prepare for, and participate in, monthly open to buy meetings. Forecast sales, margin and inventory. Develop action plans to meet sales goals and margin. Manage receipts to open to buy and define plan to meet inventory targets. Identify risks and opportunities at both the department and item level.
- Provide ad hoc reporting as needed to measure sales, margin and inventory sell thru; analyze historical sales data and current trends; define action plan.
- Create similar reporting for other cross functional business units.
- Review top selling items weekly, inclusive of stock levels in both stores and the warehouse. Work with distribution to insure proper stock levels.
- Review margin and propose retail changes to support margin plan.
- Identify slow sellers, developing an exit strategy to minimize markdowns.
- Offer to develop process; make recommendations to current processes.
Key Selection Criteria
We are looking for a candidate with a high energy level that enjoys the challenges of retail. This changing business requires a flexible individual with a high degree of organization skills, and the ability to prioritize to meet deadlines. The job involves working with multiple business units and requires good written and verbal skills.
- Bachelor’s degree required
- Advanced Excel skills required
- 1-2 years planning and allocation experience preferred
- Previous retail experience desired