A bachelor in retail and merchandising degree program is designed to teach you to manage merchandise in various aspects, such as from concept to consumer, analyze products for retailing and wholesale, and how to select vendors. A retail management degree introduces you to various tools and concepts necessary for assessing and discovering buying trends, evaluating merchandise prices, and assessing merchandise quality. The program also focuses on management disciplines in addition to sales operations, strategies for engaging consumers, and procurement of merchandise. Students could complete their bachelor in retail and management degree program in four years, but the duration could vary depending on enrollments status or academic progress.
Curriculum and Coursework
The curriculum emphasizes consumer oriented practices of business, and introduces students to various disciplines such as e-tailing, customer services, sales, public relations, retailing, and technology entrepreneurship. The curriculum is designed so that it provides in-depth knowledge and tools to students that assist them in applying consumer and merchandising theory to real-world scenarios. Exact course titles may vary at each school, but there are some similar courses such as these:
Creative Problem Solving
Merchandising, the Consumer, and Design
Culture, Dress, and Society
International Retail Markets
Retail Environments and Human Behavior
Advanced Buying and Sourcing
Acquiring a certification is not obligatory, but it may display your professional ability and competency. Several professional purchasing organizations provide certifications in this field such as the Institute for Supply Management provides the Certified Professional in Supply Management certification. The Certified Purchasing Professional and the Certified Professional Purchasing Manager certifications are offered by the American Purchasing Society. APICS offers the Certified Supply Chain Professional and the Certified in Production and Inventory Management certifications.
Careers related to this program include purchasing managers, buyers, purchasing agents, business analysts, marketing specialists, store managers, and sales representatives. In 2012, the combined median salary of purchasing managers, buyers, and purchasing agents in general was $60,550. Projected employment growth rate of wholesale and retail buyers is expected to grow by 7 percent from 2012 to 2022. This information was provided by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
You may also choose to pursue further studies after earning your bachelor's degree if you like. Several universities offer a master's degree program in retail and management.