The Home Depot recognizes that the face of the nation is changing—which means their customer base is also changing. As the global leader in home improvement, it is imperative for The Home Depot to constantly explore ways to meet its customers where they are. Currently, they want to reach the next generation of home buyers and home enthusiasts. Being able to understand how The Home Depot should evolve its in-store experience to best appeal to the Millennial and GenZ audiences will be critically important to maintaining the market leadership position and how they serve customers’ needs. This will require that they reimagine their designs (store layouts/formats), shopping experience elements (including experiential), capabilities, and messaging to attract, engage, and build customer loyalty with these key segments.
This externship provides students an exciting opportunity to be part of that strategy by partnering with The Home Depot’s In-store Environment Team, which directs and manages the in-store shopping experience. This team owns the presentation of THD Stores to their customers and store associates. The work of ISE focuses on creating in-store shopping environments that are informative, compelling, and easy to shop—through engaging and informative visual signage, appealing and easy-shop product displays, and innovative and helpful technologies/capabilities to drive customer conversion, increase sales, and enable customer loyalty.
For this externship, you will conduct primary and secondary research to determine trends, preferences, and behavior of younger demographics and determine the best-in-class practices for creating in-store experiences for younger target segments. Those recommendations and findings will be shared with ISE leadership as THD explores the development of a THD pilot store / format.
During this Externship, you will:
- Become familiar with the mission and objectives of The Home Depot and the In-store Environment Team
- Learn about terms and concepts in merchandising as well as macro trends among younger generations in the home improvement sector
- Conduct and catalog primary customer research to better understand the Millennial and GenZ segments
- Develop a customer profile to understand the nature and the buying behavior of the targeted segment better
- Conduct comparative analysis of other retailers to discover insights into best-in-class engagement of Millennial and GenZ segments
- Compare other retailers' strategies to THD's current in-store communication and design strategies and identify potential gaps and opportunities
- Create and deliver a compelling presentation highlighting the findings and recommendations for how THD should evolve their in-store environment to best appeal to the Millennial and GenZ segments
We are seeking ambitious sophomores, juniors, and seniors currently enrolled in accredited HBCUs. The strongest applicants will have demonstrated interest in business and brand strategy, operations, marketing, merchandizing, creative design, and customer insights, as well as creating immersive and compelling customer experiences.
Students studying business, communications, liberal arts, marketing, engineering, operations research, supply chain, art, and design are the best fit for this program, but it is open to all majors.