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Alex Milligan

BA (Hons) Fashion Management with Marketing
Graduated 2017

Picture of alumnus, Alex Milligan

What has your career journey been since graduating?

After graduating in 2017, I took a merch admin role at Charles Tyrwhitt. After just 10 months I was headhunted for a role as an assistant merchandiser at Pep & Co. I then moved to a junior merchandiser role for Stevensons, which then allowed me to move into my current role with Ralph Lauren which is at an equivalent level. Working for many different types of business has really allowed me to understand the merchandising role better.

Did you feel that the course prepared you for going into industry?

Yes, a real example is the Buying and Merchandising module we did in the second year. We had to liaise with a Chinese supplier on a range of sportswear, understanding the challenges of working with an external stakeholder and the language barrier were invaluable and in fact something that I spoke about in my interview with Charles Tyrwhitt that impressed! The course really gave me the understanding of the whole supply chain and buying process from initial concept to the stock going onto the shop floor and everything that happens in between.

I really enjoy seeing how the season plays out, whether the forecasts I set were realistic and particularly when the sales come through and we have reached or beaten our targets. I also enjoy the investigative aspects of merchandising, finding out why there are problems and then coming up with solutions and plans to counter them.

Have you been able to use the knowledge and skills you learnt on the course in your job roles?

One of the key things I took away from the course was the responsibility of working independently, and effectively managing your time. We also had to do presentations on the course, which made me so much more confident about speaking in front of people, and something I regularly do in my job role. I also regret not attending all the IT sessions to learn Excel, it would have made my life much easier!!

What did you enjoy about your time at Solent?

Making friends for life! I really enjoyed the social side of Solent, as a member of the rugby team there were many sports socials. I also worked in a club and got to know other people in Southampton outside of the university, who remain friends to this day.