Buyer (Pittsburgh, PA based)

  • Full-time
  • Department: Merchandising
  • Regular/Temporary: Regular

Company Description

At rue21, we believe fashion should be fun and accessible to all. As a leading specialty retailer, we’re different, we’re unique—just like you. rue21 combines a shopping experience designed to fit the individuality of our customers with a community to foster love, advocate change and empower each other through what we wear and what we do. Join our team and be #YOUinrue.

Living Our Values:

Inclusivity: rue21 embraces all of you. We promote individuality and celebrate our differences. All are accepted, respected and welcome. Integrity: We own our words, our actions, and our results. We set our standard high by thinking big. It matters how we show up and how we play the game. Collaboration: Together we are rue21. We listen and support each other and achieve our collective goals together. Curiosity: We don’t ask why, we ask why not? We are agile and are driven by new ideas and original thinking. We are passionate and believe anything is possible. Community: Our power is our people; our community of customers, associates and partners. We care, we connect, we listen and we deliver.

Job Description

Your Role

The Buyer contributes to rue21’s results by being responsible for product development/selection, vendor negotiations, department/category strategies, fashion trend/forecasting and key decisions to drive the business in the Merchandising Department.  Along with managing all communication of responsible categories with vendors and internal partners.

What will you do? - Responsibilities

  • Commits to supporting rue21’s vision, mission, and values of an inclusive environment and sets an example for their team or sphere of influence.
  • Coordinates requirements, specifications, timing, and distribution for merchandise selection
  • Develop strategies and criteria for negotiations
  • Evaluate competitive offerings to determine the overall best offer for a product/service
  • Resolve quality problems with suppliers and user departments
  • Lead and participate in cross-functional team meetings
  • Manage and develop Assistant and/or Associate Buyers
  • Develop/manage/evaluate relationships with other internal departments
  • Build the Brands in all activities; inclusive of quality and timely execution
  • Be customer centric, build the assortment focused around the customers point of view maintaining value and quality
  • Maintain and update open-to-buy daily, weekly and monthly.
  • Develop and present department/category strategies and assortments to Sr Buyer and Director/VP for alignment and sign off


  • Communication – Effectively communicates with CEO, Board of Directors, leadership team, cross-functional peers, and all associates in field, store operations and visual merchandising teams; Actively listens to understand others and ensures the message is understood; Ensures important matters are shared with all appropriate parties; Communicates in a clear and concise manner, both verbally and in writing; Accepts and uses feedback to improve performance
  • Collaboration Demonstrates the desire and ability to work cross-functionally; uses a "we" focused approach; Resolves interpersonal conflicts constructively; Appreciates and leverages the strengths of others to accomplish goals
  • Proves to be an open-minded and inclusive leader
  • Holds Self Accountable – Holds self-accountable for measurable high quality, timely, and cost-effective results
  • People Centric – Exhibits strong listening skills; Has a fast paced, ever changing, people first mentality; Builds positive working relationships with internal and external business partners
  • Initiative – Takes a proactive approach and goes beyond what is required to achieve goals
  • Deliver – Results driven with high standards; Sets achievable goals, successfully executes, and can articulate solutions in a linear, easy to understand way; Searches for inefficiencies in processes and offers pertinent recommendations to improve
  • Evolve – Strives to be original through thought and ideas; Displays genuine excitement around "new"


What do you bring to the table? - Education and Experience

  • Degree in Fashion Merchandising, Business or related field
  • Five+ years' experience as Buyer
  • Prior managerial/supervisor experience
  • Partner with planning on creation and management of OTB
  • Fashion forward and not afraid to be a trend starter
  • Actively participate on Product development process 
  • Drive fashion trend and evolution of assortment
  • Drive e-comm assortment and sales
  • Partner with vendors to negotiate on cost, merchandise quality and delivery windows.
  • Great teammate. You know how to work with and influence those around you, and you don’t hesitate to roll up your sleeves and help when others need it.
  • Engaging interpersonal and presentation skills.
  • Efficient organization, prioritization, and time management skills.
  • Strong analytical problem-solving skills, and the ability to draw conclusions to make recommendations.
  • Ability to operate independently while establishing strong working relationships with co-workers and cross-functional teams
  • Ability to work with and influence senior management
  • Ability to foster a positive and motivating work environment, encouraging feedback and innovation
  • Self-motivated with critical attention to detail and deadlines
  • Ability to adapt well to change in direction and priority in a fast- paced and deadline-oriented environment
  • Drive pricing and promotional strategies
  • Curate assortment for different subsets of customers and stores
  • Bring full vision of product story to life
  • High degree of proficiency in MS Office Suite, Outlook & Internet applications

Additional Information

What’s in it for you!

Competitive compensation and bonus plan

Comprehensive Benefit Package

  • Generous PTO offerings
  • 401K Retirement Plan with company match
  • Medical, Dental and Vision Coverage
  • Company sponsored Life Insurance
  • Health Savings Account
  • Flexible Spending Account/Dependent Care
  • Employee Assistance Program - Confidential support programs for associates and families

Employee Discounts

  • 40% off full price merchandise in stores and on-line
  • Perks at Work – Savings program on brands, travel, dining, and more

This summary of benefits is reflective of a range of those available and may not apply to all employees.

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