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Associate, Merchandise Planning

Job ID: 11744
Job Type: Full-time
Location: Frederick, MD
Date Posted: May 8, 2023

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Job Description


The Associate, Merchandise Planning is responsible for setting financial targets for sales, margin, and receipts by channel and department. Associates will drive bottom-up merchandise financial plans that align with Buyer's category strategies. In-season, they are responsible for maintaining rolling forecasts at the department(s) level and working with the Planner to manage the business. Associates will also work with Planning Managers to review product flow and mitigate risks. Perform other duties as assigned.


  • Translate top-down division financial targets to department-level.
  • Partner with Planners to develop a monthly department-level bottom-up build with a focus on sales, margin, and turn consistent with the category strategy.
  • Develop in season Rolling Operating Forecast for sales, margin, and inventory.
  • Gather input from Buyers and Inventory Managers to maintain weekly inventory forecast, all channels
  • Supports assigning stores to division/department volume clusters.
  • Manage department-level OTB in partnership with Planners.
  • Review business performance by channel, focusing on highlights and opportunities.
  • Understand the current inventory level and evaluate forecasts based on BOM, receipts, and EOM plan.
  • Evaluate opportunities and risks of adjusting core parameters, allocations, markdowns and promotions in order to achieve sales margin, and inventory objectives.
  • Develop action plans with buyers to achieve financial targets.
  • Build and maintain store clusters at Department level and above to tie back to financial plans.
  • Regular, dependable attendance and punctuality.

About Music & Arts

Music & Arts embodies the world of creativity and music by encouraging our teammates to find their own individual sound. We strive to create lifelong musicians and make a difference in the world by enabling musicians and non-musicians alike to experience the almost indescribable happiness that comes from playing an instrument. We believe in putting our customers first, engaging with respect and integrity and fulfilling our mission with passion.

The first Music & Arts was located in a small house in Bethesda, MD and run by founder Benjamin O'Brien. When Music & Arts opened its doors in 1952, we offered printed music, music lessons, dance lessons, and art supplies. Ben decided shortly after opening his business that he wanted to focus on music to better serve his customers -- a decision that remains intact to this day.

Since the 1990's, Music & Arts has expanded nationwide through organic growth and a series of acquisitions and mergers with other music dealers. In 2005, Music & Arts joined forces with American Music to become the largest band and orchestra instrument retailer in the United States. Based in Frederick, MD, Music & Arts is now part of the Guitar Center enterprise and comprises 225+ retail stores, 200+ educational representatives, and 250+ affiliate locations

To join our band, you'll need the following experience:

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent experience in a related discipline
  • 3-5 years direct experience
  • Financial acumen.
  • Forecasting analysis.
  • Inventory optimization.
  • ROF/OTB management.
  • Ability to identify and quantify risks and opportunities.
  • Practices open and continuous communication, values keeping others informed, effectively presenting information in a clear, concise manner.
  • Excellent leadership, facilitation, and interpersonal skills, with the ability to work across functional lines and at many levels.
  • Ability to think creatively, strategically and technically
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule based on department, rental season and Music & Art's needs.
  • Knowledge of MS Office computer programs are required  
Why join us?

With a career at Guitar Center, you become part of the world's largest multichannel musical instrument retailer. Whether at our Stores, Contact Centers, Distribution Centers, or Support Center, Guitar Center employees have a common goal: to help people find their sound and fill the world with more music.

Love this gig and want to apply?

Guitar Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer and provides fair and equal employment opportunity to all employees and applicants regardless of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, veteran status or any other protected status prohibited under Federal, State, or local laws. All employment decisions are based on valid job‐related requirements.

If you are a qualified individual with a disability or a disabled veteran and are unable or limited in your ability to use or access our website, you may request a reasonable accommodation to express interest in a specific opening. You can request reasonable accommodation by sending an email to [email protected].

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