Careers in FMCG |

Careers in FMCG

By QS Contributor

Updated Updated

Careers in the FMCG sector may be the right fit for candidates looking for exciting and dynamic work environments.

Most large retail and consumer products firms operate programmes for new graduate and MBA recruits. These programmes typically train and develop younger candidates from a wide range of disciplines for leadership and managerial roles. Trainees are usually exposed to all aspects of the business, from marketing and sales, to supply chain management, and accounting and finance. Industry experience is often an advantage in applying for these programmes.

FMCG Sector

The FMCG sector represents a particularly dynamic arena for MBA hiring, involving retailers and the suppliers to retailers - Global powerhouses include P&G, Unilever, Nestle, Walmart, Tesco and many others. FMCG broadly covers retail goods with a short shelf-life, due to high consumer demand or rapid product deterioration. It includes such products as perishables and includes smaller household and fashion items. In the USA, an MBA is a standard entry level qualification for this sector, whilst in Europe and Asia, many graduates join training schemes, whilst MBAs join in junior management, brand marketing or finance roles. 

Various opportunities

Retail Buyers

Retail buyers are responsible for stock selection. To this end, they must understand their customers' tastes, and the types of products that sell well in their store. They must keep abreast of current trends and fashion, and be aware of the nature of the competition.

Retail Managers

Retail managers plan and coordinate the operations of retail outlets. They assume overall responsibility for ensuring the quality of customer service, the appropriateness of choices of inventory, and managing the finances. Their duties vary according to the size of the retail outlet. In a small organisation, they may take direct responsibility for all aspects of supply chain management, retail service management and stock selection. In contrast, the managers of large organisations will liaise with appropriate section managers to ensure their activities are properly coordinated.

Supply and Distribution Chain Managers

Supply and distribution chain managers are responsible for planning and organising all aspects of supplying the right products to the right store at the right time. They are required to manage the ordering and receipt of products from the supplier, the storage of goods, and the delivery of goods to the retail outlet.

Marketing Managers

Marketing managers research, plan and implement all aspects of an organisation's marketing. Their goal is to improve the image and profile of the organisation, and to increase its sales and market share. They are required to understand consumer trends and demographics, to plan and coordinate advertising and publicity campaigns, and to advise executives on advertising and marketing strategies.

Finance Managers

Finance managers will have an MBA with focus on cost accounting, or will take a cost accounting qualification alongside their work. Many graduates in this function take an MBA to accelerate their career progression and differentiate themselves (or to move into a different function). In early days, work involves producing management accounts in time for reporting cycles. With seniority the role transitions in to cost saving and change management projects to improve overall profitability of the organisation.


This article was originally published in . It was last updated in

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