Buyer (Hybrid)

Bobs Stores / Eastern Mountain Sports

Full time

Meriden, CT

Job Title: Buyer

Employer: EMS - Eastern Mountain Sports (

Classification: Full-Time, exempt

Location: Meriden, CT

Reports to: EVP, General Merchandising

Company Overview:

We believe success comes down to people. Since 1967, Eastern Mountain Sports has been helping people of all ages and abilities to have more fun outside. As a trusted source of top-quality outdoor gear, apparel and advice, we operate over 20 locations in twelve northeastern states, working with top active brands such as Timberland, The North Face, Columbia, Carhartt, Marmot, ON, Sorel and many more!

At Eastern Mountain Sports, we take a lot of pride in hiring people who have a genuine passion for the outdoors and the desire to share that passion with others. If you've got passion for the outdoors and a commitment to the environment, an obsession for properly outfitting our customers, and a high degree of personal integrity, EMS may be the place for you.

About the role:

Our company is focused on connecting people to joy – your role in our business is an integral part of that mission. This role will be a pillar of the Merchandising team for EMS - Eastern Mountain Sports. The individual in this role will be a leader in this function and through subject matter expertise elevate the buying / procurement function to support the EVP of Merchandising. The main responsibilities of this role is the sourcing, negotiating and buying of goods, materials and services to meet the Company’s operational requirements.

This role has greater responsibility and accountability than a Buyer function and includes some people management responsibility. The job holder may take responsibility for a specific project or hold a larger remit in terms of purchasing responsibility.

They will lead, oversee and maintain inventory. Researching, analyzing, and forecasting current and future buying trends, markets, styles, and products with attention to specific target market and demographics. They will develop and maintain relationships with wholesalers and suppliers and negotiate contracts. Over time this person should rise to the level of a Sr. Management position.

Primary Responsibilities:

• Leads and establishes a foundation for buying decisions by researching market trends, product direction, and competition; analyzing business trends vs. plan; and reviewing forecasts of sales, inventories, receipts, gross margin and markdowns.

• Manages key vendors by maintaining strong working relationships while effectively negotiating terms such as unit costs, delivery windows, and vendor-added services as well as by proactively negotiating for off-price merchandise.

• Leads team in processing effective purchase orders by negotiating vendor-added services, setting appropriate ship windows, ensuring adherence to ship windows, and completing the entire purchase order form accurately.

• Manages selection, turn, and profitability of assortments by ensuring timely Distribution Center processing of receipts and returns-to-vendors; generating timely price changes to liquidate dated, slow selling inventories and to support sales events; and generating in-store transfers.

• Drives forecasting for adequate ongoing and “sales-event” inventory levels by working with the Planners to analyze individual store characteristics and nuances with regard to product mix.

• Sets direction for advertising preparation process by ensuring accurate data entry into AdPrep and timely merchandise turn-ins for advertising photo shoots.

• Leads effective coordination of tasks and information by maintaining accurate, timely, effective communication with all business partners.

Experience and Qualifications:

• Four-year college degree, with 2-5 years post college experience in a buyer/ procurement role

• The individual should be someone ready to be able to “lead” the buying function with minimal supervision after the first 3 months.

• Contract management and supplier experience

• Project management experience a must

• Proven purchasing experience, preferably within a retail or CPG environment

• Strong technical knowledge and understanding of retail / warehousing / distribution processes and components and supply chain management

• Computer literate, to include advanced Excel skills

Skill and Attributes:

• Work collaboratively and negotiate and engage with stakeholders and suppliers regarding new projects, supplies and initiatives and advise of impact of change on purchasing and production activities

• A willingness to look beyond the immediate task to the big picture

• Stay current and up to date on any changes that may affect the supply and demand of needed products and materials and advise others of any impact

• Strong negotiation, communication, interpersonal and influencing skills

• Analytical, numerically astute with strong proven problem solving abilities

• Results orientated with the ability to plan and deliver against project deadlines

• Commercially and financially aware

• Comfortable leading discussions with Sr. Executives team members

• Prior experience managing a team, proven leadership, mentoring and coaching skills


1. Personal Improvement & Wellbeing: We are committed to doing the work to become the best versions of ourselves physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually in order to explore the world, build community, and curate living in a healthy state of joy, love and inspiration.

2. Empowered Thinking: We agree to do the work to metabolize our irrational fears so we can make rational decisions to achieve the outcomes we are looking for. This means we will be bold and courageous in failing forward, and we accept risk within well-managed parameters. The faster we hypothesize, test, validate or iterate, the sooner we succeed. There shall be no fear of rejection for speaking up; good ideas can come from anywhere; everyone has a voice; negative behaviors must be surfaced.

3. Integrity & Fairness: We seek a meritocracy where equity, inclusion, belonging, authenticity, honesty and integrity are paramount.

4. Service: We seek to deliver vastly more value than we cost and to make the world a happier place everyday.

Company Benefits:

At EMS, we offer an industry leading benefits package that includes a variety of benefits including paid time off, health insurance, dental insurance, tax deferred retirement plans, and access to experts in preventative care. We also offer fun perks such as access to online yoga classes through YogaWorks, Access Perks discount shopping, dining and travel network, and GoDigital University, our internal training program that is hosted by industry leaders in entertainment, music and more.

Additional Information:

EMS is committed to creating an inclusive work environment that reflects the diversity of our community. We are an equal opportunity employer. Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to their race (or traits historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles), religious creed (including religious dress and grooming practices), color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, reproductive health decision-making, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and related medical conditions), gender, gender identity, gender expression, age (40 and over), sexual orientation, veteran or military status.