PB CAREERS: Michaels Stores Posts Private Brand Design & Quality Jobs

MichaelsThe nation’s #1 arts and crafts retailer owns and operates more than a 1,100 Michaels Stores canvassing the US and Canada. Michaels sells more than 40,000 products including art and hobby supplies, décor, frames, needlecraft kits, party supplies, seasonal products, and silk and dried flowers. Michaels also operates about 155 Aaron Brothers stores in Texas and 10 other states, which provide framing and art supplies. The retailer’s Artistree subsidiary manufactures frames and molding for Michaels and Aaron Brothers stores. Michaels Stores was taken private in 2006 by the investment firms Bain Capital Partners, LLC, and The Blackstone Group.

Product Designer
Job Overview:
This is a position that supports the company’s strategic initiative to grow Private Brand. This individual will be a member of our World Class Design Team and assist in bringing creativity, unique, trend right product design to Michaels exclusive brand lines. The Designer will report directly to one of our Managers of Product Design. This Designer Illustrator will play a key role within our Integrated Product Development team.  Candidate will collaborate with the Manager of Product Design, Private Brand Manager, (PBM), Director of Private Brand and Global Sourcing (DPBGS) and Category Director (Sr. Buyer) for their assigned category(s).

Primary Responsibilities:

  • The Product Designer contributes to the Michaels’ value proposition by supporting merchandise initiatives through collaboration with our internal partners in Merchandising, Private Brand and Global Sourcing as well as our vendor community.   Product Designer builds relationships and drives communication to ensure product design requirements are developed, communicated, and implemented.
  • The candidate will be responsible for interpreting trend forecast provided by the Trend Committee and translating it into product design in their assigned categories. He or she will also create story boards and presentations in partnership with their Private Brand and Global Sourcing team members.
  • The candidate will work with the Manager of Product Design, Private Brand Manager, Director of Private Brand and Global Sourcing, and the Category Director to determine product specifications for concepts.
  • He or she will focus on coordinating and leveraging the efforts of the internal design capabilities of our vendor partners with a focus on speed to market and driving a cohesive product statement at store level.
  • The candidate will help the Manager of Product Design and the Vice President of Private Brand Services to execute relevant design strategies by incorporating consumer insights, drive value engineering and improve products both in form and function with a sharp focus on achieving financial objectives.

Job Requirements:

  • Bachelor degree is preferred.  A BFA or MFA is highly preferred.
  • Minimum 1-5 years of product design and/or illustration experience with a major retailer, brand or design firm.
  • Ability to design concepts that are consumer focused to meet the needs of our Michaels Customer.
  • Design experience in developing icons, prints, repeat patterns & graphics is required.
  • Must have solid hand sketch/illustration skills and must be able to visualize concepts and easily communicate them as part of a cohesive merchandise assortment.
  • Must have a high degree of proficiency with Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
  • Must have a thorough working knowledge of basic Microsoft Office Programs.
  • Must have excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Must have time management and organizational skills.
  • Experience in working with overseas manufacturers and vendors to develop innovative products lines preferred.
  • The ability to travel over 15% globally will be required in this role.

To apply:  www.michaels.com/jobs

Manager – Quality Assurance

Basic Function: 

The position will develop, direct and execute a category specific quality strategy that assures product quality and regulatory compliance.
Primary Job Responsibilities:

  • Support Product Development – Collaborate with internal partners to proactively assure development of quality and compliant products (25% of Time).
  • Product Testing – Develop and maintain test protocols; coordinate test strategies with suppliers and labs; review test results and resolve issues; monitor compliance reports to assure that all products are tested. (25% of Time).
  • Packaging Approval – Review and approve product packaging for appropriate warnings and regulatory compliance (10% of Time).
  • Inspections – Manage product inspection plans, review results and resolve issues (10% of Time).
  • Issue Resolution – Collaborate with internal partners to investigate quality, safety, compliance or other product issues; determine root cause(s) and formulate appropriate response (10% of Time).
  • Product Designation – Review new products to determine testing and compliance requirements and enter designations into appropriate systems (10% of Time).
  • International Travel – Work with suppliers, agents and network partners (10% of Time).

Job Requirements:

  • 5 years total industry experience with a minimum of 2 years in related quality assurance and/or reguulatory compliance.
  • Private brand, CPG and/or specialty retail experience is a plus.

Educational Requirements:

  • Bachelors Degree
  • Physical or Biological Science, Quality Assurance, Engineering, Business or Related Field

To apply: www.michaels.com/jobs


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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.