Category Manager, Zoro

| Chicago

Company Summary:
Zoro.com is an eCommerce company that sells business supplies, equipment, and tools—but we’re much more than just a website. We’re a team of people who win and lose together (we prefer winning!). Since 2011, Zoro has been working hard to make it easy for our customers to purchase everything they need to make their businesses go. Zoro currently offers over 6 million products, fast and free shipping, no-hassle returns, and exceptional customer service. We’ve grown quickly in a short time, recently surpassing 450 team members and reaching annual revenue of over $600 million. Add to that our award-winning culture—we were named a Great Place to Work for 2019-21, among other accolades—and we think Zoro is a pretty amazing place to work and grow.
 

Primary Function:
Product Line Expansion for Zoro is a core part of our strategy. We desire to have all products for all business customers so we need to continuously add new products. As a member of the Emerging categories this role plays a highly strategic role in the future of Zoro. Emerging Categories are a key contributor to our growth in both sales and category expansion. Categories that are currently considered in our Emerging group includes (but not limited to) Vehicle Maintenance, Metalworking, Outdoor supplies, Paints/coatings/coverings, laboratory products, IT/electronics, and food service.


Category Manager’s success will be defined by unlocking the future portfolio with identification and development of new supplier relationships as well as accelerating the sales of the existing portfolio of products. We expect our Category Managers to be thought leaders, able to think big and create a scalable vision, and be able to solve problems unique to their categories to be successful. The Category Manager is responsible for suppliers and categories but in addition you will be hands-on in general management of your lines and you’ll touch many areas within Zoro. As such, you’ll need strong internal influence skills to build and maintain relationships and understand many of the inner workings of our business. Being an e-commerce company we have vast amounts of data that you’ll need to be able to digest and turn into actionable plans to manage your business. A successful candidate is a solid utility player that can both manage and grow existing business as well as business development.


Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Understand vertical market segments, what it takes to be successful and evaluate if/how Zoro is able to participate in the segment.
  • Demonstrate solid data analytic skills to be able to understand the drivers of your business, mine data, and create appropriate strategies
  • Understand how and why customer use certain products including various technologies and brand differences
  • Understand the customer needs and be an advocate for them to make sure their experience is excellent when they buy from Zoro
  • Execute on outreach, prospecting, and selling the Zoro model to many suppliers to come on board.
  • Negotiate contracts with suppliers on a daily basis to achieve a fast launch to market with the highest level of success while managing within operational capabilities and profitability.
  • Manage supplier relationships and be able to operationalize suppliers on our platform and drive sales and profitability
  • Drive your business with a high sense of urgency to obtain the results that we need to achieve.
  • Learn and manage all the sales levers within Zoro to engage the right ones at the right time to achieve the growth we need to achieve

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree required. MBA or equivalent preferred.
  • 7 - 10 years of experience in a related field preferred.
  • Experience in distribution, online marketplaces, wholesale, e-commerce preferred.
  • Experience negotiating contracts and establishing new supplier relationships.
  • Experience in any of these categories such as outdoor products, IT/Electronics, automotive, paint, metalworking, hospitality, food service, laboratory products, power transmission.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, agile environment.
  • Strong financial acumen and ability to communicate complex deal terms in a clear and compelling manner. 
  • Work requires superior written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills. 
  • Computer skills including building presentations, analyzing data, communicating information, and internet search techniques.

Zoro Values and Inclusive Culture:  We share a commitment to our Zoro values – Win & Lose Together (We prefer winning!), Take Ownership, We Are Transparent, and Aspire to be Customer-Obsessed. Everything we do at Zoro is centered around delighting our customers. It's a natural extension of our company culture and how we care for each other. We believe when we act in ways that are consistent with these values, we can solve any technical challenge that lies ahead of us. As a Zoro employee, you can expect to work with smart, energetic people, learn something every day, and be valued for your perspective.

Zoro is dedicated to foster an environment where people of all backgrounds and beliefs are represented, and all team members can be confident that their experiences and perspectives are valued. Zoro aims to empower all employees to learn about, raise awareness, and promote diversity and inclusion through all of our workplace interactions.
 


Zoro is an Equal Opportunity Workplace and an Affirmative Action Employer.
All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.

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Technology we use

  • Engineering
  • Product
    • JavascriptLanguages
    • PythonLanguages
    • SqlLanguages
    • DjangoFrameworks
    • Google AnalyticsAnalytics
    • JIRAManagement

Location

One office is located in the West Loop, offering diverse eateries and steps away from nightlife! The other is in the northern suburb of Buffalo Grove.

An Insider's view of Zoro

How would you describe the company’s work-life balance?

We are driven and work hard, because we are growing like crazy! We are in this together because we want to be, not because we have to. On the flip side, I've never missed one of my kid's ball games, concerts, parent-teacher conferences, and when I take a vacation, I'm actually allowed to take it (of course, I'm available if you need me, team)! :-)

Adam

HR Leader

How do you empower your team to be more creative?

Zoro has an awesome test and learn culture where you can try new things and see what works and what doesn't and, most importantly, learn from those lessons and drive improvements. We constantly look for ways to do that - whether it is tools, engagement, processes or empowerment. We share best practices, feedback and suggestions from our agents.

Dawn

Director, Customer Service

What does your typical day look like?

As a Financial Analyst with Zoro’s Finance team, my typical day starts with generating daily sales reports and sending it over to our headquarters. Then, I talk to business unit owners and gather information that would impact our financials. Zoro has an encouraging collaborative environment…everyone is easily approachable!

Margaret

Sr. Financial Analyst

What are Zoro Perks + Benefits

Zoro Benefits Overview

Very competitive package - beyond your base salary, we offer bonuses, a 401(k) match and additional 401(k) incentive contribution, a full-scope of medical/dental/vision/life insurance benefits, voluntary benefits, shuttle service, a bunch of free food (free coffee, soft drinks, snacks, and free meals from time-to-time). Our North Suburb office has a subsidized cafe inside our offices that is a breakfast/lunch spot and coffee bar, in addition to a game room, recreation area and a rock room... yes a rock room... bring your axe and rock out on a break!

Culture
Volunteer in local community
Partners with Nonprofits
Friends outside of work
Eat lunch together
Intracompany committees
Daily sync
Open door policy
Team owned deliverables
Team based strategic planning
Group brainstorming sessions
Open office floor plan
Diversity
Dedicated Diversity/Inclusion Staff
Highly diverse management team
Unconscious bias training
Through period live trainings and webinars, it is important for all of our Zoro team members to collaborate, ideate, operate without bias!
Someone's primary function is managing the company’s diversity and inclusion initiatives
Mean gender pay gap below 10%
Diversity Employee Resource Groups
Zoro has an Inclusion Council comprised of a diverse group of team member volunteers across all levels within the organization to build awareness and strategize on DEI initiatives.
Hiring Practices that Promote Diversity
Health Insurance & Wellness Benefits
Flexible Spending Account (FSA)
Disability Insurance
Dental Benefits
Vision Benefits
Health Insurance Benefits
Life Insurance
Pet Insurance
Optional Voluntary Benefit
Wellness Programs
Discount partnership with Sky Fitness.
Onsite Gym
Buffalo Grove equipped with workout bench, dumbells, free weights, a basketball court, badminton court, ping pong, air hockey, bags, golf net, outdoor volleyball, and we've even played quiddich!
Team workouts
We've offered yoga, kickboxing, mindfulness, walk-a-thons, and other sessions for our team members to explore ways to strengthen physical, emotional and spiritual wellness.
Mental Health Benefits
Retirement & Stock Options Benefits
401(K)
401(K) Matching
3.5% contribution by Zoro on a bi-weekly basis (whether you contribute or not). Additional 3.5% target contribution based on annual company performance.
Company Equity
Employee Stock Purchase Plan
Performance Bonus
Match charitable contributions
Child Care & Parental Leave Benefits
Generous Parental Leave
Flexible Work Schedule
Remote Work Program
Family Medical Leave
Adoption Assistance
We've won a Dave Thomas award for having a solid adoption assistance program - that's pretty cool!
Company sponsored family events
Vacation & Time Off Benefits
Generous PTO
Starting at 18 days per year with carryover option of up to 5 days.
Paid Volunteer Time
We like to give back to the local community. We have team builders focused on helping a variety of philanthropic organizations.
Paid Holidays
Zoro offers all employees paid time off to observe all major holidays.
Paid Sick Days
Perks & Discounts
Beer on Tap
Casual Dress
We feature a range from shorts and t-shirts to those who embrace "Tie Tuesdays". Wear what makes you comfortable, but you may want to clean it up if you have an important customer in town!
Commuter Benefits
In our North Suburb office, we feature shuttle service to/from Buffalo Grove, Highland Park, and Deerfield stops. Also a commuter benefit program available as a voluntary benefit.
Company Outings
We've done many of these. From ball games to luaus to olympics to the zoo - Zoro finds ways to treat employees to lots of fun.
Game Room
Basketball, bags, driving range net, ping pong, badminton, video games, music room... we even played quiddich in our warehouse for our Harry Potter-themed Halloween event!
Stocked Kitchen
All offices feature coffee, soft drinks, sparkling water, tea, popcorn machine, random snacking opportunities, as well as an on-site cafe in our North Suburb office.
Some Meals Provided
Happy Hours
Sometimes happy hours provided by the company, but many team members get together outside of work because they want to, not because they have to!
Parking
Recreational Clubs
Softball, bowling, and dragon boat racing team... yes, dragon boat racing!
Relocation Assistance
Fitness Subsidies
Professional Development Benefits
Job Training & Conferences
Tuition Reimbursement
Diversity Program
Lunch and learns
Cross functional training encouraged
Promote from within
Continuing Education stipend
Time allotted for learning
Online course subscriptions available
Customized development tracks
Paid industry certifications
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