Do you love working with numbers, have great attention to detail and are very analytical?

Did you know there is currently a global shortage of merchandise planners and an experienced planner can work anywhere in the world?

Would you like a role where you have full sales, profit and stock management responsibility?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then we may be just what you are looking for!

Course Outline

Our Merchandise Planning ESSENTIALS course is a six-week guided online course that has been developed to teach you the key tasks undertaken by team members in the planning department.

Each week, we guide you through a subject area so you can build up your planning skills.

diagram explaining the topics in the planning essentials course
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topic one: introduction to retail planning

The first week of the Planning ESSENTIALS course introduces you to the functions and activities that take place in a buying office throughout a season as well as outline any jargon and retail maths calculations that you will need throughout the course.  There are two subjects in topic one:


    1. UR – The Product Lifecycle
    2. UR – Calcs & Jargon

topic two: key planning skills

Over the next two weeks, we take you through the pre-season planning, showing you how to build a merchandise financial plan.  How to build and assortment plan and how to ensure you have the optimal number of options to put in the range and how many units to buy?   There are two subjects in this topic:


    1. Merchandise Planning
    2. Assortment Planning & Range Building

topic three: sales performance & stock

In our final topic we move from the planning stage to the trading stage, beginning with managing orders, allocating stock as well as looking at sales performance in season and managing stock to ensure maximum profit.  There are four subjects in topic three: 


    1. Evaluating Performance
    2. In-season Management
    3. Managing Key Lines

After scouring the internet to find a purpose-built course to gain knowledge in Merchandise Planning I found Numensa Academy.

The Merchandise Planning Essentials course was insightful and incredibly well structured, firstly providing a substantial overview into the complete planning cycle. Then breaking each step of the process into comprehensive modules, with a strong emphasis on UK best practice. The glossary and additional reading materials that come with the course are worth the admission alone.  

Beverley and Jade have a wealth of knowledge to impart and have gone above and beyond to ensure I got the most from this course. I hope to keep close ties with them both and further my study at Numensa as my career progresses.

Daniel Brassett

Merchandise Planning ESSENTIALS Graduate

Why should you do our planning essentials course?

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experienced merchandise planning tutor

With this guided online course, you have weekly online modules to complete, PLUS a weekly tutorial with a highly experienced Merchandise Planner, so you can delve deep into what you have learnt online and tap into your tutor’s wealth of knowledge.

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Industry centered training

We are the only organisation in Australia offering fashion buying and planning courses, who also train retailers’ buying and planning teams and have been doing so for a decade.  This means that not only do we understand the skills you need, but that we have an excellent reputation within the industry.

To find out if this course meets your career aspirations and if it is right for you, book a careers consult today…

Ready to go ahead and book your place onto the planning essentials course, just click on the button below to enrol…

illustration of people who make a retail merchandise team


Think you know, but would like to learn more.  Sign up for our FREE Module:

The World of Buying & Planning.

In this module:

    • Unit 1:  The Merchandise Management Process
    • Unit 2: The Role of the Buyer & Planner
    • Unit 3: Challenges Facing Retailers Today




The fashion and retail industry is a competitive field. If you aim to have a successful career as a fashion buyer, merchandise planner, or retailer, you need to understand the foundational skills needed to thrive in fashion. At, we offer comprehensive fashion buyer training programs to provide students unparalleled opportunities in the industry and match retail businesses throughout Australia with premium-quality candidates. In essence, we’re here to help you land your dream job and flourish in the role. So, sit back and take in our advice for picking the right course and our tips for nailing your interview.




When it comes to fashion training, has a handful of courses that aim to teach the skills needed for specific careers in the fashion industry. Some of our courses are more comprehensive than others, but all of them aim to provide you with the best quality education and support as you take the next steps in your career.

Fashion Buying – Essentials

This 6-week course fast tracks you toward your career in fashion buying. You’ll cover all the essentials you need to excel in a fashion buyer role, as well as access to our exclusive jobs board where our retail clients post their vacancies.

Merchandise Planning – Essentials

Our other 6-week program equips you with all the skills for a merchandise planning role, including pre-season planning, inventory management, and sales performance. Much like our Fashion Buying – Essentials course, you’ll also have access to our exclusive jobs board to see upcoming vacancies.

Fashion Buying & Planning – Ultimate

This 6-month fashion retail training program includes everything you’ll need to succeed in a career in fashion retail. You’ll undertake 25 buying and planning subjects plus a guaranteed internship in a retail buying office. Once you’ve completed the course, you’ll also have access to our exclusive jobs board.

Work/study/life balance

While the stereotypical image of a student is a recent high school graduate or an early-20s person balancing a part-time fast-food job and coursework, many people undertaking tertiary education have full-time jobs and need to find the balance between their job, their studies, and their personal lives. Whether you’re working in the fashion industry already or you’re currently in a different career.

New technical skills

Studying online means you’ll need to learn to use a range of different pieces of software and programs. You’ll become familiar with communication technology like Skype and Zoom, cloud-based storage and sharing software like Google Drive and Dropbox, and project management software like Asana or Basecamp.

Lower costs and less debt

A typical university degree will set you back tens of thousands of dollars, which most people put on HECS to be repaid over decades. However, doing fashion business online courses with will equip you with the practical skills you need to succeed without the huge price tag. We also offer flexible payment options to help you manage your money while undertaking your studies.

Learn better self-discipline skills

Online study teaches you responsibility, time management, and self-discipline. You can’t really sign up for a course in self-discipline; you need to foster that skill in other ways, and pushing yourself to complete an online fashion buying course is a sure-fire way to refine those skills.




One of the most valuable things you can do to advance your career in fashion buying and merchandise planning is to network and make connections in the industry. From store managers to people who’ve completed fashion design training, every connection you make could be useful at some point in your career. Here are a few tips on networking throughout your course and in the early stages of your career.

Attend fashion events and fairs

If you’re looking for an opportunity to meet fashion industry professionals from various backgrounds and specialisations, fashion events are the ideal place to do so. Do your research before attending and find out who will be attending on the day. Make a note of the people you’d like to meet and take the time to introduce yourself. Take business cards and follow up with people the next day with a quick email thanking them for their time and conversation. It’s a fantastic way to get your name out there in the industry!

Do internships

One of the best ways to meet people in the industry is to work within the industry. Internships are an excellent way of trialling different jobs, discovering your passions, and finding out what works for you. At, we offer students in our Fashion Buying & Planning – Ultimate course an internship as part of the program, and sometimes, these internships turn into jobs or valuable references. For those in our Essentials courses, we offer access to our jobs board, where some businesses and companies post openings for entry-level positions or internships, so keep an eye out!

See people as more than just their job title

The aim of networking isn’t about advancing your career; it’s about meeting like-minded people who are there to learn from and support one another. If you go about networking with the aim of getting to know individuals on a personal level, you’ll find that you’ll have far more success than if you just go out looking for job opportunities.

Use LinkedIn

Take advantage of LinkedIn if you can’t make it to many fashion events or in-person networking opportunities. Keep up with the latest career changes your colleagues and mentors make, and make sure to reach out personally to congratulate them.

Try to find a mentor

The fashion industry is incredibly fast-paced, and it can feel overwhelming to keep up with the latest trends, changes, and developments. It can help to find a mentor, someone to take you under their wing and guide your career development. However, be mindful that many industry professionals are busy, and some may not have time to support your ambitions. Don’t be offended if your hero or ideal mentor can’t help you; just keep looking for someone who can.




Okay, so you’ve got the qualifications, you’ve met a few people in the industry, and you’ve landed an interview for a job in fashion buying and planning… So what now? The team at have a few tips and tricks to help you make an impression at your interview.

Dress the part

If you want a career as a fashion buyer or merchandise planner, you need to dress fashionably. You’ve spent so much time learning the skills, so you should definitely apply those skills to your own wardrobe! In saying that, you don’t have to go out and spend hundreds of dollars on a new outfit just for the interview. Think critically about the fashion company you’re interviewing with and choose your outfit strategically.

Stay up-to-date. Before your interview, make sure you’re updated on the latest trends and movements within that area of the industry. Whether you’re interviewing for a women’s clothing label or a brand specialising in kids’ shoes, bring the latest fashion news and updates to your interview to show your interviewer that you’re serious.

Use your references

If you’ve done a course through, ask your teachers to provide a reference for you. Alternatively, if you completed one of our industry internships, ask your internship supervisor if they’d be willing to be a reference for you.

Outline why you want a career in the fashion industry

Whether you love the culture of fashion or the chance to be creative in your work, pinpoint the reasons why you love fashion buying and merchandise planning and express that in your interview. Demonstrate your passion for your work as often as you can.

Ask plenty of questions

Don’t be scared to ask questions of your own to learn more about the company and the role you’re interviewing for; after all, you’ll want to be sure you’ll love it. For example, ask your potential employer why they love working in the industry, what they’re looking for in the ideal candidate, and about their company’s core values. It’ll demonstrate that you’re genuinely interested in the company and the role and that you’re a proactive person.


At, we’re passionate about supporting career development in the fashion retail industry. We aim to provide those looking at a career in fashion buying with real-world, industry-applicable skills through our comprehensive online courses on fashion buying and merchandise planning. We strive to provide the best-trained candidates to fill vacancies in retail and fashion, and we leverage our years of experience and close relationships with our clients to offer our students unparalleled opportunities in the industry. If you’re ready to take the next steps in your career and learn about our fashion buyer training programs, contact the team at today. Your career in fashion starts right here.