Ballard Designs Job - 44365363 | CareerArc
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Company: Ballard Designs
Location: Atlanta, GA
Career Level: Director
Industries: Retail, Wholesale, Apparel



Job Mission:

Global management of proprietary product development and sourcing in all categories and countries.

  • Actively evaluate, develop and implement strategic sourcing opportunities and initiatives to further company growth
  • Continually increase quality, standards, and margin while maintaining Ballard's established business
  • Develop relationships and vendor base in new countries
  • Maintain the company-wide Product Development Calendar in collaboration with merchandising, creative and planning teams.
  • Drive proprietary product development to decrease time to market
  • Manage and train vendors and agents for long-term growth and partnership
  • Prioritize sourcing efforts, minimize risk, diversify countries and backup all key items/collections
  • Provide strong leadership to train and actively manage the Sourcing team
  • Manage all Ballard designer partnerships with internal and external partners to ensure strong partnership and work cross functionally to ensure projects remain on track

Job Responsibilities:


  • Partner team with Product Design, Merchandising & Inventory to manage all projects for cost effective timely product development with an adequate lead-time for stock
  • Develop & maintain strong vendor/agent matrix which other departments can lean into for executing company initiatives
  • Lead Sourcing team through large volume of product development projects driving approximately 70% of demand with aggressive timelines
  • Problem solving and troubleshooting to ensure continuity in supply of stock and initiatives
  • Evaluate and monitor agent/vendor performance across all categories of the vendor matrix
  • Maintain inbound freight table and agent table in MAPS
  • Legal Issues – product recall, injury … in partnership with the Quality & Compliance Manager
  • Import/regulations compliance –  ensure team is properly classify items in development, maintain required item records, ensure import and US regulations followed for each item
  • Provide sound judgment and decision making
  • Price Increases – review prepared chart, negotiate with agent/vendor before Merch review.  Final chart approval before sent to Merch Info
  • Vendor chargebacks – final approval

Project Management & Planning

  • Identifies opportunities to improve overall sourcing efficiency
  • Manage team with concurrent sourcing cycles in fast paced environment with competing projects and deadlines
  • Supervise resourcing – ensure communication across teams clear for transition of stock, improvement in quality, packaging, margin
  • Drive product development through team partnership, communication of expectations, enforcement of deadlines, adequate PD tracking tools for all teams and evaluation of deliverables to ensure accountability
  • Manage timelines in all product development calendars. Actively drive teams and designers for timely product development to ensure new items are in stock at deadlines

Agent and Vendor Management

  • Train and maintain established culture and expectations with each agent/vendor to Ballard routines and standards
  • Proficiently manage vendors and agents for continuous performance improvement
  • Vendor research, development, and cost negotiation

Team Development

  • Build strong partnerships with internal and external teams, remove obstacles and work across teams to ensure projects and initiatives are completed by deadlines
  • Develop and refine Sourcing team documented processes
  • Ensure the team maintains proper records for both Sourcing item records and Compliance (quality, construction, packaging, branding)
  • Continually looking to improve processes allowing for shorter product development time as well allowing the team to work more efficiently
  • Problem solve challenges and mentor team members for professional growth
  • Manage Ballard's designers business in partnership with Marketing, Merchandising and Product Design
    • Develop a partnership and trust with each designer and their office
    • Ensure communication with designers is detailed, proper and timely
    • Train designers to Ballard routines, timelines and standards
  • Customer Reviews - Represent Sourcing and Ballard in all group decisions on the cross functional team
  • Mentor team members to grow in experience and within their position


  • Plan all travel required for Sourcing trips in partnership with Sourcing Manager
  • Lead by example on trips to mentor team, develop agents and vendors
  • Capable of travelling alone internationally and representing Ballard in all decisions
  • Represent Ballard professionally in all travel.  Set example, organize and pace appointments to ensure each project and agenda point accomplished.  Keep all records from appointments through trip notes, digitals
  • Develop and manage agents and vendors in travel
  • Support team as needed when team members traveling
  • Ensure trip follow-up managed through to completion in a timely manner


  • College degree required
  • 10+ yrs experience across all home décor categories (furniture, decorative accessories, soft goods …), sourcing and direct import with foreign manufacturers
  • Extensive travel experience in Asia, Europe and South America
  • Experience with import and domestic logistics/transportation preferred
  • Extremely organized, experience with large volume of projects and project management preferred
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Able to multi task, prioritize critical issues and work within all levels of the organization
  • Ability to function independently or in a team and show sound judgment in a fast paced environment adapting to change with a sense of urgency
  • Extensive travel required
  • Enjoy working collaboratively and across many cultures
  • Outlook and Excel – proficient required
  • This position description is intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this job. It is not intended to be inclusive of all duties and responsibilities and is subject to change at any time.

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