Why do you want to, or why should you, work in the retail industry?


Why do you want to, or why should you, work in the retail industry? Well, this sector is responsible for employing approximately 11% (3 million) of all employed people within the UK, and provides a wide variety of roles ranging from Store Operations and Head Office to Finance and Merchandisers.

There is a massive variety of diverse career paths available within the retail industry and each one has its own set of skills and attributes just waiting for you.  Highly commercial and driven by sales and profit, you can be part of this if you are prepared to put the work in.

As well as being known as a dynamic industry, working in retail can also be a highly creative one.  Buyers and Merchandisers are responsible for sourcing new products, developing new seasons’ ranges, budget control and analysing sales. Working in design will give you the opportunity to help create the backdrop to shops and stores that make you want to return to over and over again.  And behind the scenes, operatives for warehouse logistics ensure that all your favourite products and purchases are plentiful.

Retail is an ever changing sector and it is imperative, when working within this industry, that you have the skills and attributes necessary to compete.  Working within Head Office may be something that appeals to you, where you may have responsibilities such as monitoring sales figures and ensuring that all completed business positively impacts on the company’s bottom line.

Generally a Monday to Friday 9 – 5 job, roles within a Retail Head Office will give you the opportunity to grow, as there are many rungs of the career ladder from entering these particular positions.  If being a member of Senior Management or even a CEO, then working within Retail at the Head Office could be the job for you, as you will get to make valuable decisions on the future of the company and its potential growth.

If more irregular hours are what suit you, then working within store operations could be the career for you.  Often shift work shared with other members of staff, you can build your career around your busy home life, working evenings and weekends if this is what’s best.  This kind of retail position is ideal for those who have excellent interpersonal skills and can utilise communicative abilities when interacting with customers face to face on a daily basis.  You will also have sales targets and business objectives to reach and if you do, you will certainly reap the rewards.

In order for the retail industry to thrive, it needs to be positively promoted and there are a variety of positions within Public Relations (PR) or Social Media that will allow you to be responsible for this.   You don’t just have to be responsible for maintaining the public image of your company or organisation within the UK or Ireland – there are limitless retail opportunities around the whole of the world.  Similarly, marketing roles will provide you with a variety of ways to communicate a store’s brand to customers, including through the store itself and online.

Other possible careers within the retail industry include Human Resources (HR), where you will be responsible hiring and training staff and for motivating individuals into achieving their own potential as well as making a significant contribution to the business.   IT might be your thing and there are plenty of retail industry organisations out there ready to recruit you to effectively manage all of the internal business systems and if you enjoy working with figures, then why not analyse and report on the finances of organisations within the retail industry.