Skills and knowledge for merchandising professionals: The case of the South African apparel retail industry

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Elena Karpova, Putman & Hayes Distinguished Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: This study explored skills and knowledge required for merchandising professionals to fulfill their roles and perform their responsibilities in the South African apparel retail industry. The apparel merchandising competency (AMC) framework was used as a theoretical foundation in this research. A phenomenological approach was followed to explore the perspective of professionals employed by South African retail companies. Semistructured, face-to-face, in-depth individual interviews were conducted with 16 merchandisers who had between 2 and 20 years of experience in the apparel industry. Atlas.ti software was used for data organization and analyses. Following the AMC framework, four topical areas emerged: (a) soft skills, (b) hard skills, (c) explicit knowledge, and (d) tacit knowledge. To fulfill their roles and perform their responsibilities, 8 soft skills, 7 hard skills, 10 explicit knowledge types, and 1 tacit knowledge type were identified as essential. Thick description of the findings using participant quotes and a graphical representation is presented.

Additional Information

Clothing and Textiles Research Journal
Language: English
Date: 2020
merchandising, soft skills, hard skills, explicit knowledge, tacit knowledge, South Africa

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