During my internship, I am assigned to a buyer who purchases items for a specific part of the business. I am in large furniture for Home Goods and my day is usually different each day. At the beginning of each week, we look and see what styles are sold, how we did as a company and overall what we need to improve. I attended vendor appointments where we look at new products and negotiate prices, and fill out order forms. I am also doing assignments on the latest trends and looking into styles and vendors who are doing both good and bad in the company. We also do frequent competition shopping where we see what other stores have in stock, and do lots of store visits to see what our own stores look like.
My greatest accomplishment would be completing my merchant challenge. I used a program to find the top and bottom vendors and the top and bottom styles within each. I shared the data and did research on why certain styles were sold well when others were not. I gave insight on what we could change in the future to increase sales to improve the company.
Working at an off-price retailer we tend to "live in the grey", nothing is ever black and white. Business is always changing and we are looking for the best deals. We buy today for tomorrow, so we don't buy long-term. That being said, I have learned that it's okay to not always know what is coming next, and focus on now.
What advice would you give?
My biggest piece of advice would be to apply apply apply! There are so many amazing internships out there and you may not think that you could ever get them. I never thought I would get an internship in Los Angeles! But the AESHM department does an amazing job preparing us, you can always do more than what you can think!