Blogs (Media Centre)




As COVID-19 restrictions begin to lift around the country and the retail sector reopens in earnest, visual merchandising will be more important than ever to catch the eye and draw consumers into store[1].

When prominent clothing retailer M.J. Bale needed skilled workers to ramp up their displays during the busy 2019 Christmas period, they turned to TAFE NSW to recruit visual merchandising staff and enhance the in-store experience for their customers.

Head of Visual Merchandising for M.J. Bale Australia, Alexandra Urban said, “TAFE NSW was the perfect choice for us as we knew these students would already have developed the hands-on skills needed to hit the ground running.”

Careers in visual merchandising are expected to grow over the next few years and around half of workers work full-time, showing there are many opportunities to work part-time for those wanting greater flexibility[2].

TAFE NSW graduate Charlotte Helsham landed a role as a part-time visual merchandiser at M.J. Bale after completing the Diploma of Visual Merchandising.

The 43-year-old North Epping mother owned her own business for many years and worked from home, but after selling the business coincided with her children starting high school she found she was able to take on some additional formal qualification at TAFE NSW and pursue new opportunities.

Charlotte said, “I started off studying the Certificates III and IV in Floristry which was a great way to consolidate the informal skills I had from working in the industry many years ago. Through those courses I discovered visual merchandising – a career pathway I’d never considered.”

Charlotte credits TAFE NSW with giving her the skills she needed to enter the industry so quickly and set her on the path to career success. She couldn’t be happier in her new role at M.J. Bale where she said she feels like part of the family.

“I am so thrilled to be working for such a great company; it really is a joy to go to work.  The teachers at TAFE NSW really helped me to build my skills and confidence and were always willing to offer help at any time.”

TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Visual Merchandising, Kerry Little, said employers often sought out the skills of students from TAFE NSW.

“The retail industry recognises the high quality of training we provide at TAFE NSW and employers have confidence in the knowledge that our students will be able to do the job required.

“As the retail sector reboots, now is a great time to start training for the new job opportunities that are becoming available.”

Enrolments are now open for Semester 2, 2020 at TAFE NSW. To find out more about the range of sales and retail courses on offer visit or call 131 601.

Media contact: Alice Dalley, TAFE NSW Media and Communications Business Partner,, mobile 0402 528 210.