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We are working with Harbor Freight Tools in their search for a Director of Ecommerce Merchandising based in Calabasas, CA. Harbor Freight Tools is a high growth mid-to-large privately-held multi-channel retailer with 350+ stores nationwide and a recently updated ecommerce business which is growing very quickly.

HFT has a unique value proposition – offering a wide breadth of tools-across power and air tools, home and garden, shop, automotive and hand tools–under its own brands at prices that are 20 to 80% lower than those offered elsewhere.

After more than 30 years of growth, Harbor Freight went through a reinvigoration process that began two years ago, where it brought in new management and began fixing its legacy systems and processes, and, as a result, HFT has achieved among the biggest top and bottom line growth of any retailer in the U.S. over the last two years-all without opening many new stores.

Please Tweet this job, and you’ll be automatically entered into our monthly drawing. Just do it and see what happens: 2010 prizes included $100 Amazon gift certs, Dean & Deluca steaks, and Keurig coffee machines …

Position Description:

The Director of Ecommerce Merchandising is a senior level position in the Ecommerce group. This position represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for a “star” web merchandiser: getting to aggressively merchandise the site for a category killer in a very large ($20+B) category, where Harbor Freight is the dominant price leader, and has had a substantial web presence for 13 years; but now, with new technology, is growing its e-commerce business at almost 50% annually.

The ideal candidate must be extremely intelligent, creative and possess the skills to construct “out of the box” solutions to emerging business challenges. He/She must be comfortable in a “high octane” environment and be that rare candidate who combines enormous ecommerce merchandising talent with a passion for driving innovation that leads to continued high-growth.

The Director of Ecommerce Merchandising must also be comfortable in an environment that is informal, apolitical, collaborative, and hands-on. Senior-most management prides itself in being willing to find the right answer, no matter who comes up with it, has disdain for hierarchy and silos, and values people who can identify and drive practical yet innovative business solutions in a priority that optimizes the longer term results of the company.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • The owner of all web site product merchandising, including cross sells, upsells, product selection, landing pages, themed promotions, product bundling, accessorizing products, personalized promotions and coupons, and home page merchandising
  • Drive the Product Information Management/product attributing system
  • Collaborate closely with Category Management teams to manage product selection for the web channel, introduce new products and brands to web customers as well as optimize web content
  • Constantly bring new business ideas and merchandising approaches to the table
  • Apply a rigorous testing approach to all initiatives to clearly identify opportunities and establish ROI
  • Incorporate the customers perspective on all merchandising
  • Manage product taxonomy/categorization for the web channel
  • Optimize on-site search to improve conversion rates
  • Drive web site usability improvements, including navigation, product ordering within categories, style sheet standardizations, product page optimization, and other merchandising driven usability efforts
  • Work with Inventory management group to optimize product availability on the web
  • Work with Marketing and Category Management to create online promotions and special events and support cross-channel marketing efforts and promotional events, including through social media
  • Manage internal employees and external resources
  • Develop key performance indicators to measure results and conduct customer surveys

Position Requirements:

  • BS/BA required.
  • A merchant’s approach and mindset is critical for success in this position
  • A demonstrated track record of success for at least 8 years in online merchandising, preferably working for a B-to-C online retailer; multi-channel experience a plus
  • Best in the industry at creating and executing product merchandising on the web, including product selection, bundling, promotions, calls to action, driving urgency, categorization, site navigation, etc; demonstrable track record of success metrics.
  • Very strong skills in web site usability; common sense, customer-centric approach
  • Experience with multivariate testing tools such as Omniture Test &Target is a strong plus
  • Advanced skills with Web Analytics tools is important
  • Experience with personalization and product recommendation tools is important
  • Prior exposure to a low value, high margin SKU intensive business is ideal.
  • Ability to execute and dig deep into detail yet maintain perspective on the broad business objective; a “roll up your sleeves” operating style.
  • Flexible personality with the ability to deal with ambiguity and to think outside the box and provide a continuous flow of new ideas and process improvements.
  • Ability to execute and carry out strategic and operational plans. Able to capitalize on new brand building opportunities, strategies and objectives.
  • Skilled at attracting, retaining and motivating the team. A good judge of character.
  • Strong interpersonal skills. Able to maintain and develop top-level, internal and external relationships.
  • Effective communication skills. Crisp and clear. Informs and directs appropriately on both verbal and written fronts.
  • Strategic thinker with an ability to translate strategy into actionable tactics; able to maintain a strategic perspective while supporting others in driving for results.
  • Dedicated to the success of the company and willing to commit to necessary hours. This is an opportunity to make a significant impact on the growth of the company.
  • Personable, collaborative team leader who will thrive in a fast-paced, growing environment with constantly changing priorities.
  • Tough-minded and willing to stand one’s ground when deliberating on issues, but also flexible and willing to change course as the situation dictates.
  • Aggressive, quick, smart and instinctive.
  • A secure, balanced ego and someone driven by need for success rather than the need for personal imprint on every decision.

Applications for this position are being coordinated by Harry Joiner. To apply, CLICK HERE. Candidates, please be sure to ask Harry for packet #1356 of market research and company / competitive intel that will differentiate you in your candidacy. Due to the competitive nature of this search, thorough preparation for these interviews with this proprietary material is strongly recommended.

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