GS1 extends category management services
GS1 Belgilux decided to further enrich its category management training offer by offering, in cooperation with GS1 Germany, a programme that leads to the title of 'Certified Category manager'. We asked Jan Somers, CEO GS1 Belgilux, and Luc Desmedt, managing director LD&Co and coordinator of the GS1 category management courses, about the reasons behind this initiative.
Category management and GS1
Luc Desmedt is managing director of LD&Co, a consulting and training organisation that supports manufacturers and retailers of consumer goods in developing, implementing and applying the skills and knowledge necessary to win with shoppers.
Luc started his career at Procter & Gamble, where he held various positions in marketing and key account management and pioneered the global development of shopper marketing and category management. He is also a member of the board of directors of Fairtrade Belgium.
"Based on our observations and the experiences of GS1 Germany, we also see an opportunity for offering a more academically-oriented programme in addition to the existing training courses.
At the end of the programme, participants are subjected to a formal assessment, consisting of a written test of the acquired knowledge and the presentation of a detailed business case to a professional jury.
When this exam is passed successfully, the participant receives the official recognition as 'Certified GS1 category manager.' Luc Desmedt says.
"We continue to focus on Category Management, our successful training for several years now!
It is and remains a proven methodology for both manufacturers and retailers to optimise their commercial strategy.
Based on a thorough knowledge of the shopper and the category dynamics, category management leads to the determination of the optimal assortment and how to present and activate it, whether in the physical shop or in the webshop."
The offer is extended
"For more than 10 years, GS1 Belgilux has been offering a very well evaluated 4-day basic category management training in collaboration with Luc Desmedt (LD&Co). This training has taught more than 150 participants from both manufacturers and retailers the basic principles of category management. Since 2 years, we also offer an Advanced training, in which a number of important CatMan-topics are further explored (e-commerce, shopper segmentation, shopper research...)" says Somers.
"In concrete terms, we are also opening the GS1 Germany 'Certified Category management' programme to Belgian participants. This certificate is very highly regarded in Germany and is considered an important asset for professionals who want to develop a career in category management." tells Luc.
The programme spreads over a total of 9 days: 8 days of training and 1 day of exam. During those 8 days (4 x 2 days), the different steps of the category management process are explored quite thoroughly via formal presentations, group exercises, real business cases and self-study assignments.