Merchandiser is an important Hub among the garments industry and the buyer. He/she has to take care every task in garments factory-like buying the raw material which is required to finish the product, making the garment, finishing the garment, documentation, and shipping. A man who wishes to be a good merchandiser in garments industry should acquire some particular quality to become success. Cause he/she is the responsible person to make appropriate the product.
How to Become a Smart Merchandiser in Garments:
If you want to be a good merchandiser in garments the sector then you should prepare yourself by developing the following skills:
1. Good Communication Skills:
Merchandiser always has to communicate with the buyer, customer, employee, and employer. So, good communication is the most important skill for a merchandiser. That’s why good communication is called the backbone of a merchandiser. Good communication means speaking clearly and effectively with a decent language. He/she needs to have excellent communication skills in written and spoken English. Skill on other languages will give an additional advantage. A good merchandiser should also know all technical and commercial terms for accurate and efficient communication.
2. Textile Knowledge:
A good merchandiser should have required outstanding textile knowledge. Textile knowledge helps a good merchandiser in every step of order procurement. So, textile knowledge is necessary for a good merchandiser.
If he/she has a strong educational background like textile engineering, that will be good, but if he/she comes from the general line then try to get a diploma or certificate course on apparel merchandising.
A good merchandiser should enough knowledge about fibre, yarn, fabric, dyeing, finishing, garments production, trimmings & accessories, etc. He/she have to gather all information about garment trimmings and accessories sourcing like Printing, Embroidery, Poly, Hanger, Labels, Laces, Cartons and Garments manufacturing, etc. He/she should have information about all Spinning mills, knitting mills, dyeing factories, Lab testing requirements. A good merchandiser keeps knowledge about order execution procedures of international buyers.
3. Computer Skill:
A good merchandiser needs to have enough knowledge about computer operation especially, basic knowledge of MS Office. Cause, Computer makes easier to do work such as cost & consumption, time & action plan, etc.
The best way to communicate by computer with the buyer is email writing. Most of the buyer approvals are taken on e-mail only. Good e-mail writing can make a different impact. So, a good merchandiser should know how to write email effectively. A good merchandiser should have made a habit of replying to all emails without wasting any time and keep conscious to provide meaningful replies within a short time.
4. Negotiation and Convince Skill:
Negotiation and Convince Skill is one of the most important skills for a good merchandiser. A good merchandiser should know how to negotiate with the buyer-seller to convince them. Garment merchandisers have mainly negotiated the product price with the buyer and finalize the deal.
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5. Problem Solving & Decision-Making Skills:
A good merchandiser should visit the production floor daily and gather vast knowledge on technical issues and production processes. He/she should find out the root cause and provide solutions instantly to get a positive result. If any problem comes to the merchandiser, he/she should have knowledge about product and process can solve that problem easily.
Strong analysis and study of sales and making decisions that increase sales, making an instant decision for any problem to get solved is very important. A good merchandiser has to make the decision quickly.
Planning is one of the most important key factors for good merchandiser. He/she should maintain a critical path, time and action plan strictly to hit the delivery date. He/she needs to be tricky and expert to handle bottleneck situation smartly. The right planning of an order process can be helped to find out future profit or loss. It’s all about a game of good planning. Therefore, a good merchandiser should always try to make smooth planning for an export order execution.
7. Good Knowledge of Costing:
Basic math knowledge is very important to conduct essential merchandising activities like costing, calculation of product cost, calculation involved in processes, etc. If the wrong raw material is sourced garments may face a huge loss, so having good knowledge of costing is important.
A good merchandiser needs to knowledge about the present market price of fabrics and accessories so that he/she can reduce the cost of the order. So, the knowledge about the present market price is very important for a good merchandiser.
8. Team Management Skill:
Merchandising profession is all about team management. In the merchandising department, people work as a team. A good merchandiser needs to manage the employee, members they supervise in his department and depending upon skills of different employee task need to be allotted. Team management is very important for the execution of an export order which improve order productivity. Team management work helps to be improved the professional relationship of a merchandiser.
A good merchandiser should be smart. He/she is an all-rounder person in the garments sector. Normally, smartness means a person is an external expression. But in the context of garment sector merchandiser’s smartness is dependent on his work. A smart merchandiser is professional and keeps a commitment with Buyers and Suppliers. So, you should be smart, intelligent; strong enough in personality and excellent behaviours.
10. Keep Learning:
A good merchandiser has to learn the basics of garments merchandising day by day from the beginning of your career to become an expert as well as to hike career graph. He/she should have curiosity regarding update fashion trend and attend the fashion-related trade fair, Textile fair, Garments Fair to gather knowledge. You should never miss on-job training programs. Cause job training programs can raise your confidence level tremendously.
11. Always be Updated:
A good merchandiser has to procure several items from different suppliers. So, He/she should have updated and kept a record of all yarn, fabric, and garments accessories suppliers address and contact details. A good merchandiser has to update on global business. For which he/she has to gather information, which helps to learn new things.
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12. Maintain Good Relation:
A good merchandiser always builds good relations with buyer, employee, member in his department, and other people of the department of the garments. Having a good relation helps to work well in a team and to build and maintain an effective working relationship. Good treatment to buyer maintains a healthy relationship leads to long-term business relationships. He/she should visit the supplier’s factory frequently that is textile mills, embroidery factories, and printing factories, accessories factories to make good relationship and achieve sound ideas on technical issues.
Merchandising is very challenging profession. You can build a better career in this profession which depends on his ability to adjust to the environment of the Garments industry. Merchandising is one of the top-rated careers all over the world. Someone who wishes to build a career in merchandising and want to become a successful merchandiser should have to maintain these qualities.
Author of this Article:
Md. Mahedi Hasan
B.Sc. in Textile Engineering
Textile Engineering College, Noakhali.