Demand Planner

We’re hiring! Mastermind Toys - Canada’s Authority on Play - has big plans and we want YOU to join our growing team! We have a customer-obsessed culture, which we believe starts with employee experience. We jump at the chance to co-create with our customers and employees, while staying true to our Canadian roots. Over 38 years later, Mastermind Toys is the nation’s largest specialty toy and children’s bookstore, and we deeply believe that “Play is Kids’ Work.

We are currently seeking a Demand Plannerto join our Planning and allocation team.

The successful candidate will work with Category Buyers to drive profitable gross margin return on inventory investment (GMROI) in addition to managing pre-season and in-season planning from category level down to individual SKUs.  Along with the Allocation and Planning Analysts, this successful candidate will be responsible for optimizing category in-stock and works towards the attainment of best-in-class allocation, replenishment, planning, buying and distribution practices. They influence Category Buyers with data and analysis around purchasing, inventory levels, promotions, pricing, and pre- and post-event review and continually identify opportunities to increase sales, margin and inventory turnover across all categories.

Job Responsibilities

Item level planning and forecasting:

  • Leads the development, implementation and maintenance of formalized demand forecasting processes at SKU-level
  • Troubleshoots forecast variances, develops and implements continuous improvement solutions
  • Analyzes product assortment and makes recommendations on items to discontinue and items to develop
  • Optimizes order quantity and order frequency for all items, taking into account lead times, supply chain capacity and ordering costs
  • Develops exit strategies for end-of-life items and brands, in order to optimize recovery
  • Maximizes in-stock by location by monitoring sales, inventory and lead times, and by visiting stores
  • Communicates store inventory flow to all stakeholders, particularly Merchandise, Logistics and Store Operations

Pre-season planning and Open to Buy (OTB) management: 

  • Owns OTB sales, margin, and inventory forecasting against budgeted goals
  • Develops category and subcategory level pre-season plans; reforecasts in-season, based on current trend
  • Analyzes category or item data and provides recommendations to Category Buyers to optimize store assortments, reduce inefficient inventory distribution, increase store turns, and improve GMROI
  • Ensures that supply chain has ability to deliver product on time to the customer and addresses supply chain issues as needed
  • Works cross-functionally to ensure that strategic initiatives and tactical plans are incorporated into financial forecasts
  • Provides demand forecasts to vendors as required


  • Accelerates business transformation by applying best practices to streamline processes and improve efficiency
  • Develops process understanding in all related areas of the organization outside of the Merchandise team
  • Contributes to and leads cross-functional projects that align to company strategies, focuses on projects that reduce costs and inventory levels across the business, and improves product flow
  • Visits stores and competition to analyze and develop strategic recommendations to implement with business partners
  • Additional projects as required


  • Post-secondary degree in Business, Finance, Accounting, Supply Chain or Statistics required
  • 3-5 years of planning, allocation, and analysis in a retailer or distributor required. A combination of buying and allocation experience is an asset
  • Strong Excel skills required (including the use of VLOOKUP, INDEX, MATCH and Pivot Tables). Knowledge of macros is a plus.
  • Experience with Microsoft NAV is an asset
  • Demonstrated proficiency in creating reports and analysis, and in providing practical recommendations to stakeholders
  • Solid understanding of supply chain functions, forecasting and inventory management principles
  • Proven ability to deliver results in line with overall strategy
  • Demonstrated competence with supply chain math, attention to detail, planning and analytical skills
  • Able to deal with multiple priorities and use information-based judgment in decision making
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Toy and book retail knowledge is an asset

Hybrid work model is available for many of our positions.

Please note, the successful candidate will be required to provide proof of completed COVID-19 vaccination or medical exemption. 

Mastermind Toys is committed to accommodating applicants with disabilities throughout the recruitment and selection process.

 If you require any accommodation, please contact us and we’ll work with you to meet your accessibility needs.

We sincerely thank all applicants for their interest in Mastermind Toys; however only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Resumes can be submitted to