The greatest asset any fashion business can have is the right people to work with. Mrs. Atinuke Smith, in this article, writes about the essential staff every fashion brand needs. Mrs. Atinuke Smith is the CEO of Datina Designs Fashion House and Fashion School. She manages the Tibile Fashion Retail Outlet stores in Ibadan where her unique clothing items, in the Datina Design and Tinu Smith labels, are showcased and sold.
Here’s what she had to share with us:
Fashion designing has a huge value chain, so when it comes to bringing employees on board, two major factors help in making the right decision;
- What type of fashion business is the brand into, and,
- What stage is the fashion business in? Is it at the startup, growth, or expansion stage?
Types of Staff Different Fashion Brands Need
There are different types of fashion businesses e.g fashion designing, fashion retail, fashion import/ export, fashion blogging, sale of fashion accessories, fashion school, etc. All these businesses will require different types of employees with different skill sets.
A fashion designing business at the startup, growth, or expansion stage will need different sets of staff relevant to their activities. A fashion manufacturing brand, for instance, will need a different set of employees from a fashion retail brand that does not manufacture but focuses majorly on marketing and sales.
A standard fashion designing business at the growth or expansion stage will usually need staff with the following skillset depending on the type of fashion business it is; Front Desk Officer, Admin Assistant, Operation Manager, Production Manager, Marketing Manager, Procurement Manager, Cutters, Illustrators, Designers, Tailors, Fashion Instructors, Account Officer, Social Media Manager, Sales Representative, Cleaner, Security Officer.
Factors to Consider in Determining the Type of Staff to Hire
When it comes to determining the type of employees that should be brought on board as team members, a lot of factors need to be considered. These factors include;
- Is the fashion business at the Startup, Growth, or Expansion stage?
- What type of fashion business is it? (Answering this question will determine the type of employees and services the fashion brand needs to hire.)
- What is the financial capacity of the business? How many employees can the business conveniently accommodate?
When these factors are clarified, it makes it easier to know the type of employees your fashion brand needs.
Startup Fashion Brands;
Most times, startup business owners are responsible for and saddled with taking on most of the roles in their business. They are in charge of designing, sewing, customer service, accounts, and social media management. Until the business begins to grow and needs extra hands, the business owner continues to cope with the pressure of the business on his or her own.
For a startup fashion designing business on the path of growth, the most essential staff are;
- A front desk officer or an administrative assistant, who is dedicated to the brand, has strong management skills and can attend excellently to customers,
- Skilled tailors who can cut and sew perfectly,
- A cleaner to keep the environment clean.
Other essential roles like Accounting and Social media management can be outsourced.
Expanding Fashion Brands;
For fashion businesses that are at their full growth or expansion stage, a full-fledged staff force, like the one listed above, needs to be structured into the business. This is so that every part of the business will be captured and well taken care of.
Fashion businesses are quite dynamic and have their peculiarities, it cannot be one size fits all. The employees needed by a fashion brand at the startup, growth, and expansion stages will be different due to their activities and financial capacity.
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