4 Kick-Ass Reasons to Work in Retail & FMCG

Jobs in retail are about much more than stacking shelves.

Honestly, they are. Here are four major reasons why working in retail & FMCG could be the best decision you ever make. It’s okay, you don’t need to thank us for this career advice...

Work in one of the very biggest industries

If you’re in any doubt about how big the retail & FMCG sector is, you just have to take a stroll down your local high street on a Saturday afternoon to see all the shoppers out in force.

Retail is a crucial part of the national economy. Consumer spending makes up more than half of the UK's gross domestic product (GDP), with 2014 proving particularly strong and retailers enjoying their strongest monthly performance for a decade in April.

4 Kick-Ass Reasons to Work in Retail & FMCG

Thanks to the size of industry and the vast number of major companies that exist to sell us stuff, there are lots of job spaces out there that need filling!

If you become bored in one retail job, you should be able to find another one without too much stress – especially if you have good experience behind you.

From those just starting out to those with a few years’ experience, retail & FMCG has a job to suit everyone.

“It was a good opportunity for me. I was given real work from the start; gaining valuable hands-on experience and feeling that this was beneficial not only for my CV, but personally as well”

Find out more about working at Unilever here.

Light up your CV with big names

When us mere mortals see a celebrity it’s normally a pretty big deal. Well, big name brands are the stars of the employment world and will make your CV as popular as a celeb-selfie on Facebook.

Working for a household name like Nestle, Unilever, Mars and Coca-Cola will show that you have what it takes to work at a top company and handle the responsibility this entails.

“I really enjoyed my time at L'Oreal. The level of responsibility and importance of my tasks exceeded my expectations. There is a very strong culture and I found it a good company to work for”

Read more about what it’s like to work as a commercial sales intern here.

Work your way to the top

Major industry names like Sir Stuart Rose, Mary Portas and Mark Price all powered their way up from the shop floor to the industry pinnacle, becoming influential figures in retail at companies like M&S and John Lewis.

This just goes to show that it is possible to make your way to senior, well-paid and influential positions from entry-level roles; this is far from a dead-end career – if anything it’s a career with real scope for growth, as long as you’re ambitious.

It may have a reputation as being a career that pays peanuts, but people at the top of the food chain in retail management jobs can earn a packet.

Sir Stuart Rose earned more than a million a year while he was top-dog at Marks & Spencer, while Tesco’s new boss Dave Lewis will be handed £1.25m annually to run the franchise.

Graduates entering the sector can expect to earn £25,000 a year, while the retail industry is one of the sectors expected to experience to greatest future growth in the number of vacancies available.

“My manager always asked if I was alright and checked up on me. I knew that whenever I needed help, I could ask him, or anyone in the team”

Read more about working as a marketing assistant at Nestle here.

Innovation is the name of the game

At the heart of the retail & FMCG sector is the need for companies to sell more of their products than their competitors.

To do this businesses can’t afford to stand still, even for a second – they are constantly thinking of ways to reach new customers and keep old ones coming back for more, again and again.

This involves wheeling out new products, improving existing ones and marketing to new audiences and groups of people, which requires everyone in the company to play their part, from market research, design and supply chain to sales, PR and advertising.

Included in this is the need to jump on the digital marketing and social media marketing bandwagon as the importance of virtual shopping becomes ever greater. Shoppers spent the best part of £100 billion online during 2013, which shows just how important the online retail & FMCG sector has become to economies nationally and globally.

For a role with innovation and development at its heart, you can’t go wrong with a career in retail & FMCG.

If that’s whetted your appetite and you’d like to try your hand at a placement or internship in retail, or an insight scheme if you’re a first year student, head over to our jobs pages to see what’s cooking.

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