Half Way There: Macy’s Internship

View walking to my subway stop

It’s that time of the internship! We’re now half way through our program. This week we had a midpoint review with our supervisor. Mine was very insightful and I am happy I got to sit down and talk more with my supervisor.

This midpoint review made me realize how important it is to express your challenges, and things you want to accomplish over the course of the internship. This was a great opportunity to express the things I thought I’ve done well and things I need to work on.

After sitting with my supervisor I realized an internship is where you act as sponge and absorb as much information as possible. Working with excel or finishing a bunch of projects is just as important as reaching out and shadowing as many people as possible. After all if you want to learn what it’s like to work for the company, you need to hear other employees perspectives and other areas of business.

View from top of the Empire State Building. You can see the red Macy’s Bag on the building in the top right corner.

On my floor, there are multiple sectors of the business. We have inventory planners, merchandise planners, financial planners, omni buyers, and digital merchants. Each area has a specific role that connect the whole process that goes into planning, selecting, and merchandising a product. I currently have a meeting with the my teams financial planner, David Jung, and our digital merchant, Chris Walsh.

Group Project

Throughout the internship we have been assigned a group project based on Macy’s new strategies. My group is under the, Every Experience Matters portion where we are focusing on what Macy’s can do to win our customers in and out of the store.

Our group had a very unique way of brainstorming. We started with interviewing each other about what we like and dislike about the shopping experience. After we complied all of our answers, we tried to think of a way to resolve these issues. Almost all of us had a similar answer when asked about customer/sales associate interaction, sometimes we want help, and other times we want to be left alone. This brought us back to Macy’s, a problem we had all noticed was Macy’s customer service. A lot of the time, it is hard to find a sales associate to help you in the store and it would be great if there was an easier way for Macy’s to provide better customer service.

Inspired by technologies like ​Ü​ber, “My Star Assistance” hopes to increase the efficiency, convenience, and quality of the in-store shopping experience. By implementing an on demand, geo-targeted customer service feature into the Macy’s app, our sales associates can better connect with our customers and give them the personalized assistance they need. With the “My Star Assistance” feature, the Millennial or Gen-Z “fashionable spender” can:

  • Request fashion advice or assistance virtually with an item both on the floor and in the dressing room
  • Receive an alert when a sales associate has accepted their request for assistance and a time estimate on the associate’s arrival
  • Review the sales associate that assisted them at the end of their service experience

With the rapid growth of e-commerce, Millennials and Gen-Z shop in stores solely for the experience. These age groups are more likely to spend money on experiences than commodities. Therefore, it is crucial that Macy’s captures the market share of young shoppers by ensuring we are the leader in store customer-service experiences. “My Star Assistance” is the solution.

I have absolutely loved working with my group, I could not have asked for a more smart, driven and motivated group of people to work with. We’ve met a couple times a week to solidify the characteristics we want to include in our app feature and have come up with a very detailed outline of our project.

We have also been very proactive about reaching out to people in other areas of the company. Since we are creating an feature for the Macy’s app that will help both customers and sales associates we wanted to sit down with a Store manager. We have scheduled a meeting with one of the Herald Square managers and we’re excited to hear her input from a sales associates perspective and hopefully get us going in the right direction.

 

I am currently a senior majoring in Retailing and Consumer Sciences while minoring in e-commerce. I hold the position of Social Media Manager for the Terry J. Lundgren Center For Retailing at the University of Arizona, where I am responsible for creating social media platforms that not only enhance our brand but also educate the world about retail trends. I am what you call a Retail Enthusiast, I am intrigued by the way the retail industry is evolving and what it has to offer. In my free time, I enjoy the outdoors, yoga, good music, and good company.