Ares Holdings: Merchandise Planner and Allocator

Merchandise Planner and Allocator


Merchandise Planner & Allocator

Freeform Pty Ltd, the distributor for Crocs in Southern Africa, is looking for an experienced and enthusiastic Merchandise Planner & Allocator to join the team. The successful candidate will be required to drive all channel inventory planning and retail store allocation and will be a key contributor to Crocs Merchandising & Planning strategy and approach.

Together with the Merchandise & Planning Manager, the Merchandise Planner & Allocator is responsible for the planning and control of one of the company’s biggest assets, it’s inventory, from pre-season planning through to product disposition. This is a high-profile activity that involves financial seasonal planning of sales, stock levels, supply chain requirements, and the control of the purchase relative to planned levels.

The Merchandise Planner & Allocator will analyze and forecast trends, using systems, data, and store team feedback. They lead and coordinate the activities of the distribution team which involves reviewing products’ performance at a store and manipulating available stock to drive top-line sales.

This role works closely with the Merchandise & Planning Manager, Supply counterpart, and Retail operational staff. They are responsible for planning long term buying as well as in-season planning and store allocation.

The successful candidate will be required to work closely with the Retail Operations team and Merchandise & Planning Manager to analyze customer activity, forecast sales, select forward-trending merchandise and replenish stores optimally to maximize trading opportunities and minimize stock holdings in store.

This role has an immense opportunity to drive and shape the way we plan our buys and allocate products to relevant store grids. The activities remain heavily excel based and proficiency in excel is a must. This role is responsible for all planning and store allocation. Organization and having a logical approach are critical. This role is demanding and challenging but also very rewarding with the opportunity to design the way you work. There is an opportunity in every day and in every project to push this role and the business forward.


Crocs Values

We come from a happy place of comfort, which is unbound by trend or tradition and unafraid to try and fail. We are accessible, affordable, and comfortable.

Crocs are for one and all, for every day where life is lived, inspiration is found and innovation rules the day. We take an inherently simple approach to uniting style, modern comfort, and value. These lead to our vision “Everyone comfortable in their own shoes”.

Delightfully Democratic – We celebrate one-of-a-kinds and stand together with all different kinds.

People-Purposed Design – We think people-first at every step. We design for everything you do and everywhere you go.

Inherent Simplicity – We know smart doesn’t have to mean complicated. We keep things simple, light, and totally intuitive.

Imaginative Innovation – We stretch the possibilities of design and creative thinking so you can reach your highest potential.

Unapologetic Optimism – We make a choice every day to have an open mind and look on the bright and colorful side.

Confidently Comfortable – We support comfort on every level because when you’re comfortable, you can do anything.


Why work for us:

We distribute an established global brand and we value innovation, teamwork, development, and going the extra mile. Opportunities include training & development, space to implement new ideas, global networking, and joining a dynamic team.



Inventory Planning:

  • Plan seasonal sales forecast to revenue and product margin targets for Retail and eCommerce
  • Provide input into retail store grid assortment based on historical data and consumer profile
  • In season planning reviews versus plan and sales forecast adjustments
  • Seasonal allocation plan together with retail marketing calendar and visual merchandising requirements
  • Work with brand principle counterparts on all forecasting requirements
  • Plan inventory for staff uniforms, staff allocation, and marketing seeding

Stock procurement:

  • Generate demand plan per channel in line with OTB targets
  • Ensure product arrival is aligned to a seasonal launch plan
  • Purchase order placement and ongoing management

Inventory Control:

  • OTB monitoring
  • Inventory Turn tracking
  • Manage inventory per location (virtual & store locations), including investigations to resolve stock queries
  • SAP inventory accuracy management by location (virtual & store locations)
  • Capacity planning
  • Cycle counts & Stock takes
  • Manage store returns, IBTs, and faulty products


  • Set up and maintain replenishment cadence by store, which is cost-effective (courier & staff scheduling) and meets store sales requirement
  • Maintain allocation tool and implement developments when needed (excel based)
  • Allocation execution per store as per season plan

Analysis & reporting:

  • Key metric review: Product Margin, ATV, UPT,
  • Promotional reviews
  • Store capacity and SKU capacity & productivity
  • Actual sales versus sales forecast
  • Product aging
  • Seasonal post-mortem
  • On-Time and In Full (OTIF) retail reporting

All the above should include key insights and proposed actions

  • Weekly store EOD report reviews and actions
  • Available to Sell report
  • Stock in transit retail report
  • Continuous evaluation of reports

Ad hoc:

  • Full understanding of Caltech and SAP
  • SAP unexported items
  • Store teams and Area manager communication, where required
  • Store visits
  • Monitor & capture lost sales for future planning
  • Communicate seasonal assortments to stores
  • Support and provide input to the team
  • Wholesale sell-through data analysis
  • 3PL fulfillment and last-mile communication


  • Relevant commercial qualification
  • 3+ years’ Retail & Ecommerce Planning experience
  • Excel expert – enjoys working in excel and with data.
  • Can design and develop automated excel tools, including macros
  • Highly numerate, analytical, and detailed orientated
  • Supply chain experience advantageous
  • Drives collaboration and promotes teamwork
  • Problem solver
  • Great communication skills