Behind every successful store is a really good store officer. These aren't the retail employees making minimum wage or those people who stand outside of your favorite mall shops trying to entice you to come inside. Of course, those jobs are extremely important – don't ever underestimate amazing customer service – but the store officers or business management officers are the people who help make sure the day-to-day, behind-the-scenes business is going smoothly.
TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
Store officers are the store manager's right-hand man. They are in charge of everything to do with the store's inventory.
Planning The Inventory And Budget
Senior store supervisors are often responsible for major store divisions that spend between $600,000 to $1 million on goods each year. They're the people who plan the budget, whether it's for an entire shop or just a particular section of a larger retailer. If a product is selling well, they may choose to order higher quantities. If sales of an item are poor, they'll send it to the sale rack. The store officer works with buyers to plan a store's inventory. Every product you see on a shelf was picked under the store officer's careful supervision.
Receiving and Distribution
Store officers get inventory to where it needs to go. They are in charge of receiving shipments and inspecting the products to ensure their quality. This means that when you accidentally buy a damaged product, it may be the store officer to blame. for the item getting onto the shelf. Store officers are also in charge of delivering inventory shipments. Sometimes this means they're overseeing a shop's e-commerce shipping operations and other times they're sending inventory from a warehouse to a store's franchise locations. Senior store supervisors often work at flagship locations or larger hubs and send shipments to lower-level store officers who manage inventory on the sales floor.
Staffing And Layout
Shop officers know what their customers want because they're deeply in tune with a shop's inventory. They use this knowledge to help coordinate staffing. For example, if a store sells toys, a shop officer may choose to hire extra employees during the holiday season. If a department store is having a blowout sale on all its home appliances, a storekeeper may choose to move salespeople away from clothing and next to the washers and dryers. The shopkeeper is also in charge of helping design the shop's layout and often makes the choice to put products purchased by similar demographics in a single area. They're the reason you grab that candy bar on the way out of CVS because it's staring at you while you're waiting to check out.
Store officers don't just deal with inventory. They deal with the companies that provide the inventory – the vendors. Store officers act as a liaison and help foster contracts and choose which vendors to work with under the watchful eye of upper management.
Mariel Loveland is a small business owner, content strategist and writer from New Jersey. Throughout her career, she's worked with numerous startups creating content to help small business owners bridge the gap between technology and sales. Her work has been featured in publications like Business Insider and Vice.