PB CAREERS: The Vitamin Shoppe – VP and DMM

The Vitamin ShoppeVice President and Divisional Merchandise Manager

ID: 2015-5344
Category: Merchandising
Location: US-NJ-Secaucus

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At the Vitamin Shoppe, Every Body Matters! We are dedicated to inspiring health and wellness one life at a time.

Our goal is to inspire you to take control of your health. We provide products, knowledge and motivation to help you live your healthiest life. We believe that every body matters. These words are more than our tagline; they’re our reason for being. For us, it’s not just about the vitamins; it’s about the individual lives that we touch every day. We believe in giving personal attention and doing all we can to help you achieve your unique goals. Our associates (we call them health enthusiasts) are eager – and very highly trained – to help you find what you need, and ensure that you have an exceptional experience every time you visit the Vitamin Shoppe.

Come be a part of something great and join our family of Health Enthusiasts!

Job Summary:
The Vice President and Divisional Merchandise Manager is responsible for the collaborative development and execution of the necessary category plans, tactics and strategies to achieve the margin, sales and inventory objectives set by the Merchandising leadership team, the SVP of Merchandising and the executive team.

The Vice President and Divisional Merchandise Manager will work with the Category Management team and the appropriate departments throughout the Company to develop and execute promotional plans, set pricing positioning, strategize and implement category and assortment plans, prioritize product development projects, support visual merchandising objectives, manage vendor relationships and achieve item data accuracy for the categories that they are responsible for.  The Vice President and Divisional Merchandise Manager will ensure that these strategies and tactics support and enhance the Company’s critical success factors, brand values and competitive position in order to improve the Customer experience both in store and on line.

The Vice President and Divisional Merchandise Manager is responsible for building a category management team and for the professional development of the Category Managers, the Associate Category Managers and the Merchandising Assistant that are part of the organization.


  • Set and manage the strategic direction for their categories
  • Hire, develop and manage the Category Management team
  • Develop and achieve category margin and sales plans\
  • Ideate new categories, adjacencies and owned brand concepts to support the brands vision to move to more of a health and wellness lifestyle brand.
  1. Identify, develop, test and drive implementation of new merchandise concepts
  2. Changing and moving of categories in store
  3. Introduction of new categories on-line and in store
  4. Identification, launch and maturation of potential owned brand strategies
  • Manage private label brands within the division
  • Collaborate with Supply Chain to develop category inventory plans and work to implement strategic initiatives to drive results.  This includes but is not limited to the following:
  1. Improvement of vendor fill rates and lead time variability
  2. Development and execution of exit strategies to move overstock, discontinued inventory and other forms of unproductive inventory
  3. Support initiatives to reduce damages, expiration of product and Customer returns
  4. Support the resolution of inventory issues in the Distribution network
  • Manage and support and ideate new vendor incentives to include new store allowances, damage and expired allowances, payment terms, promotional funding, vendor funded discontinuation, new item discounts, freight in allowances and other incentives
  • Maintain a rolling forecast process for the division to support sales, margin, promotions and incentives
  • Support the category and assortment planning process to include the following:
  1. Identification of the category roles and the relevant pricing, promotional and marketing strategies
  2. Conceptualization and testing of new category offerings
  3. Collaboration with Visual Merchandising and Construction to plan for, design and test new fixtures in support of the product offering
  4. Ensure we are first to market in key product offerings
  5. Prioritization of VSB product development
  • Manage the categories’ promotional plans which includes the following:
  1. Development and refinement of the promotional themes, definitions and their relative timing
  2. Integration of the promotional plans across Marketing, Training, Store Operations, E-Commerce, Public Relations, Supply Chain, Visual Merchandising, Pricing, the Vendor’s team and outside agencies
  3. Identify placement and treatment of promotion
  4. Analysis of the level of success of the promotions in order to improve future promotional plans
  • Work with the Pricing team to determine competitive position of products against our various categories of competition
  • Support the Category Manager in owning the vendor relationships
  • Ensure the accurate and timely collection and storage of item data for the Company
  • Build and communicate category intelligence throughout the organization
  • Stay current on industry and competitive landscape
  1. Attend primary industry events
  2. Regularly visit competitors to understand what they offer and to validate our competitive advantages and positioning
  • Partner with other areas of the Company to support category strategies and the needs of the business

Other Functions:  (Incidental to the purpose or the job.  These functions are performed infrequently, and have little consequences to other jobs if not performed).

  • Participates on special projects as required.

Supervisory Responsibilities:

  • Manage team including Category Managers, Associate Category Managers and Merchandising Assistants
  • Establish, monitor and measure individual goals
  • Maintain job description
  • Communicate and ensure completion of projects, tasks and keeping the team up to date
  • Perform formal staff meetings
  • Execute annual review process
  • Address, and where appropriate, document responsibility deficiencies
  • Make hiring and termination decisions

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Quantitative
  • Sales dollars
  • Margin dollars
  • Inventory productivity
  • Forecast accuracy
  • Ideation and testing of new concepts
  • Growth of their team
  • Qualitative


  • Masters or Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Marketing, Nutrition or related field preferred

Required Knowledge:                  

  • Working knowledge of merchandising metrics including comp sales, IMU %, Margin %, penny profit, inventory turn
  • Strong working knowledge of retail business to include merchandising, buying, pricing, supply chain, retail operations, direct-to-consumer business and reporting
  • Brand and Private Label management
  •  Industry and Nutrition background preferred 

Experience Required:                  

  •  5-10 years of experience in merchandising, manufacturing or marketing or related field

Skills and Ability:                           


  • Ability to clearly present information to others regardless of their status or position
  • Influence or persuade others through written and oral presentation in positive and negative circumstances
  • Listens well


  • Ability to work collaboratively with people in such a manner as to build high moral and group commitments to goals and objectives


  • Ability to influence the actions and opinions of others in a desired direction
  • Shows judgment in leading others towards worthwhile objectives

Goal Setting

  • Ability to define and prioritize realistic and specific goals


  • Ability to create positive energy (motivation) in both individuals and groups


  • Ability to make decisions quickly, based on available information, and take action
  • Ability to make commitments and not change decisions when challenged unless appropriate

Commitment to tasks

  • Ability to start and persist with specific courses of action while exhibiting high motivation and a sense of urgency
  • Willing to commit to long hours of work and make personal sacrifices to reach goals


  • Ability to maturely express one’s feelings and opinions in spite of disagreement

Computer Skills

  • Strong systems experience to include MS Word, Excel and Power Point
  • Access, Visio and JDA, Intactix or other merchandising systems preferred

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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.