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Nickeol Zhang

Education: College Degree Major in Education, MaoMing College
Year joined:
Feb 2016
Present role:
Merchandiser for Kids assortment
Guangzhou, China

What do you do at H&M?
As a merchandiser, I am the key person controlling all the parts in our supply chain in Production. I need to manage the suppliers to follow our requests and routines. Some people may think it’s boring or repetitive, however, I’m constantly on my toes to deal with different situations and different people every day. There’s always a problem around the corner waiting to be solved. I enjoy solving them with my own solutions, in my own way.

Communication is also something very important in my role. Especially when buying or handling samples, I need to make sure suppliers produce them exactly as requested. If any problems are found, I will look for solutions together with the buyers and suppliers.

Our target audience is kids so our products need to focus on childcare in terms of product safety. We need to make sure that the material used in our products is strong enough, have passed all the testing and will not cause any danger to babies.

Why did you join H&M?
Prior to joining H&M, I had already been working as a merchandiser for many years. I enjoy dealing with many details in my daily work. I’d never had a reason to change roles or company. That was until I heard H&M was looking for an experienced merchandiser to join their new socks and tights team at their Guangzhou office.

I’ve worked in a small factory, a big factory and a small company before. H&M is a massive brand name and famous in Guangzhou. It’s a big company that I knew I wanted to join. Plus, I’ve worked with H&M many times before in my previous roles in a supplier company. I felt that the employees were happy people from communicating with them on the phone or meeting face to face.

Now that I’m in the socks and tights team, I fully understand why the people here were so happy and enjoying themselves. My colleagues are really nice and you can always hear us laughing together in the office. I used to feel socks using my feet, but now, I feel them using my hands. During my time at H&M, I have become one of the happy people.

How would you describe life at H&M?
H&M has so many training activities. I learned so many skills for my own development, like feedback training and presentation training.

I wasn’t too confident giving presentations in the past because I didn’t do them that often. But after I joined the training for presentations, it helped to enhance my skills. We also have a guitar club, which the training has given me the confidence to teach some colleagues how to play. At our last annual dinner, I formed a band with other members from different departments, including my manager. And because my manager likes music as well, this is a common topic we can talk about. Starting with conversations like this, we will then move on to talk about our own lives as well. I think it’s great that we have a personal relationship at work by communicating at the same level.

Besides, H&M has a lot of other activities, like team days, annual dinner and outings. I am the chairman of the annual outing for the whole Guangzhou office. We are always looking for something we’ve never been to or done before. That’s quite a challenge!

What has made you stay at H&M?
Even though I work in a fast-paced environment and deal with stressful situations to meet tight deadlines, the flexible working hours make me feel warm and comfortable. It seems that I sometimes spend more time on a daily basis with my colleagues than I do with my own family. Luckily, they are very kind and nice to me and feel like family, too.

There are opportunities for me to move if I want to experience other jobs or departments. I’ve seen colleagues make the most of the internal mobility here. We are encouraged to move around, of course depending on your performance and the timing. I do think it’s a good way to learn other things, something new, something you have never done before, like different product types, shoes, belts, bags. If I want to learn these, I can apply to move to these departments.