For my first support office placement on the Boots Graduate Scheme I joined Global Sourcing, which is the buying function for Global Brands."
“Working on some of the most recognisable brands including Boots Soltan, Botanics and Time Delay was an amazing experience and gave me a great insight into the values and customer proposition of the organisation. Knowing that I had support if I needed it, but ultimately having ownership of such significant brands and spend right from day one, made me immediately feel a valued part of the organisation and rapidly the increased the speed of my learning. It also enabled me to work very closely with our sister team in Hong Kong, who do a very similar sourcing role with our suppliers from Asia.
What fascinated me the most was helping to develop these famous brands for our international markets throughout Europe and Asia and discovering that it’s not as simple as just shipping the same product to another country! Different country regulations, customer requirements, competitor behaviours and a whole host of other factors quickly taught me that each country needs its own unique offering to suit the market.
After a year in Global Sourcing I moved on to my second placement in Partnership Marketing. This role was a fantastic hybrid between trading and marketing, as I worked closely with a lot of big name suppliers to help them develop strategic marketing plans to target Boots UK’s customers for either new or existing product ranges. It was amazing to have access to our customer database and insights, and I was able gain a true understanding of what customers want to see when they come to shop in Boots.
Following the completion of the two year programme I was eager to get back to working on own brand products and was made aware of an opportunity in Hong Kong following the Alliance Boots merger with Walgreens, to create Walgreens Boots Alliance. I was fortunate enough to be offered the position of Business Operations and Improvement Manager and I’ve now been here six months continuing to live a dream of working and travelling in Asia.
My key responsibilities here are to take the best practices from the Walgreens Hong Kong and Boots Hong Kong teams and develop a global way of work, ensuring consistency in procedures, controls and effectiveness. I’m continuously learning about more markets, products and customers, and this year we will start sourcing for our stores in Mexico and Chile which will open up even more opportunities for my progression and personal development.”
If, like Garreth, you’re looking to work with great brands in a global organisation, we now offer our exciting Global Commercial Programme. You’ll be based in the UK on the programme learning all the commercial skills in how to source, trade and market in the UK and global markets, with the potential to launch your career in other countries in the future.
You’ll need a 2:1 degree, a passion for retail, and the desire to drive your career, whilst being a key part of driving our business forward as one of our future leaders. We also offer great benefits: A salary of £26,000 plus 25 days holiday per year – plus £1000 welcome payment, performance related bonus, stakeholder pension and a wide range of discounts and benefits.