Associate Merchandise Planner Responsibilities
The associate merchandise planner mostly works with the retail sector. The main associate merchandise planner responsibilities are to help the retail organization in achieving its goals by increasing the sales and forecasting the future trends that will assist in the growth of the organization.
Primary and Secondary Responsibilities of Associate Merchandise Planner
Merchandise planning is aimed at a systematic approach for planning and controlling the inventory and sales of the product range to increase the sales and minimize the losses by forecasting the future trends in the market. Let us understand in detail the key responsibilities handled by an associate merchandise planner:
- Planning: To develop plans by working out replenishment strategies to make the business yield more profits
- Management: He should maintain contacts with the vendors in order to ensure timely delivery of the goods and make sure that the inventory plans are executed to meet the required standards. He should maintain records and update them to support the business requirements
- Production Management: He should partner with several merchants to forecast the future trends. He should establish, maintain and predict the exact demand and ensure that the products are delivered on time. He should also make sure that there are no shortages at the distributor or warehouse level. He should work out effective strategic plans so as to liquidate products in a profitable way
- Financial Planning: He should manage and develop effective weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly merchandise plans. He should assist in communicating comprehensive product and financial strategies. He is also involved in the pricing procedures in order to achieve the goals set by an organization. He should be able to analyze the trends based on the historic performance and should keep himself updated with the latest trends in the market. This in turn will enable him to forecast the future trends to increase the sales.
In addition to the primary responsibilities he also needs to shoulder the following secondary responsibilities:
- He can make recommendations to alter certain policies and practices to maximize the sales
- He should adjust the flow of inventory and manage all the financial transactions
- He should develop unit plans and seasonal plans to reach maximum sales
- He should take initiative to extend his work and look out for business opportunities other than his normal routine work
- He should be able to tap the opportunities to maximize the sales potential
Essential Skills for an Associate Merchandise Planner
If you want to pursue your career in merchandise planning you should have at least some of the following set of skills:
- Associate merchandise planner should have a good business acumen to deliver results based on the evaluating financial and business indicators. He should be able to translate it into action plans
- He should have good problem-solving skills and should be able to present effective and logical solutions in a timely manner
- He should possess exceptional communication and management skills in order to build professional relationship with a diverse range of people
- He should have good analyzing ability and should be able to interpret the information in a qualitative manner
- He should be creative and have an ability to think out of the box and implement strategies that would benefit the organization
- He should be proficient in computers and should have an aptitude and inclination to grasp the technical applications
Educational Requirements for an Associate Merchandise Planner
The minimum educational requirement for an associate merchandise planner is a bachelor's degree in operations, finance, business or retail management. A demonstrated merchandising experience will prove to be an edge over the competitors.
Work Hours for an Associate Merchandise Planner
An associate merchandise planner should be flexible to work in the evenings, late nights, weekends or even on holidays as per the need of the hour.
Salary for an Associate Merchandise Planner
The salary offered is purely dependent on the academic qualifications and the required experience in merchandising.
Career Advancement for an Associate Merchandise Planner
An associate merchandise planner can aim to become a merchandise planner once he becomes well-acquainted with the role and responsibilities that need to be handled by him.
Associate merchandise planner responsibilities if well-handled will not only help in increasing the profits for an organization but also help in professional and personal growth.