As a career, what is apparel merchandising?

Apparel merchandising is a vital position in the readymade garments (RMG) industry. Merchandising also allows a fresh graduate to learn about the value chain of the RMG industry in depth. The career path allows individuals to obtain a senior position in the industry when compared to the floor-level jobs of the RMG sector.

In the apparel industry, the work of a merchandiser starts with product development and ends with shipment. Elaborately, s/he needs to source clients, sample the product, add a quotation for the order placed, then negotiate to secure a price. Additionally, a merchandiser also needs to look after the production of the apparel and coordinate until the order is finally sent for shipment. Merchandisers work as the bridge between the buyers, suppliers and the manufacturing facilities.”

The best thing about a merchandising career is that you get the chance to understand and comprehend the business from the driver’s seat. There is no other position in the industry where you can learn about the entire value chain in such depth. If you have the urge to learn, you will know everything about the RMG industry, and the top-level positions are easier to achieve for merchandisers.

Skill needs being a Merchandiser:Work of a Merchandiser:
Ability to coordinate between the various departmentsCommunication with buyers
Knowledge about digital platformsCreate Price quotations
Oral and Written communication SkillsOrder fabrics and accessories
Knowledge about garments production activitiesApprove Samples
Need to know about Raw materialsMonitoring till order shipment
Super speed capability to speed the orderSecure order and negotiate with buyer
Secure order and negotiate with the buyerFollowing apparel merchandising as a career

As a profession, merchandising is now a dependable position to build a career in the apparel industry. Many new graduates aim to be successful merchandisers as this is the potential profession in the job market.

Unfortunately, the employer’s expectations do not match with the quality of job seekers. Newcomers see the rough walkway in the journey of merchandising career.

They feel the profession is challenging and unpleasant due to the unlimited pressure to finish by the deadline. Professionalism is the ultimate ingredient in merchandising and so this must be taken seriously for those who are willing to start a career in merchandizing.

Author: Engr. Uzzal Dakua, General Manager (Marketing & Merchandising) of Gramtech Knit Dyeing Finishing and Garment Ltd, a sister concern of Team Group.  He has been working in the RMG sector for more than 15 years.