Graduate Area Manager Programme

Our Graduate Area Manager Programme

You’ve probably heard a lot about the Area Manager Programme by now – that we give our graduates a fantastic package (including a BMW 3 series) and that it’s ‘really hard work’. These are true. But there’s so much more. We’re also a responsible employer who thrives on giving graduates unparalleled exposure, training and support. Throughout the year, you’ll learn the ins and outs of store life, before discovering what it takes to lead your own area. Afterwards? Well, it could be just the start of an exciting career full of amazing opportunities. In fact, if you put the effort in, you can absolutely work your way to the senior levels of Aldi.

A year like no other

Day One

You’ll meet your Directors and your new boss. They’ll outline exactly what’s expected from you and prepare you for the year ahead.

Weeks 1-2

An experienced colleague will help you get to grips with the Area Manager role and they’ll become your mentor throughout your training.

Weeks 3-13

Time to roll up your sleeves. You’ll be stacking shelves with colleagues, getting to know our products, finding out about customer service and learning our unique approach to store management. With a week’s holiday squeezed in.

Week 14

You’ll have a week’s holiday to relax, absorb all that knowledge and to think about the great start you’ve made at Aldi.

Weeks 15-24

We’ll give you the keys to a store. Once the detailed training’s done, you’ll take ownership over a set list of responsibilities. Then it’s time to put theory into practice within the store environment.

Week 25-28

Taking charge of your own €multi-million business for a three-week cover, you’ll plan the rota, order over 1,700 products and manage your own team. You’ll then spend a week getting ready to present your achievements to the Store Operations Director.

Week 29

Phew. Another breather. The programme’s really gathering pace now so it’s important to re-charge your batteries and just chill out for a week.

Week 30-34

You’ll spend the next five weeks learning the ins and outs of the Area Manager role, with plenty of support from your Aldi mentor.

Week 35

Bit of a change now as you visit workshops hosted by our regional experts. You’ll get to know everything from Health & Safety and HR processes, to Ordering and Availability.

Weeks 36-37

Our huge network of stores relies on a range of support operations. During your Regional Office Training, you’ll get to know our Accounts, Trading and Business Administration teams and the kind of issues they handle.

Week 38

It’s holiday time again. A chance to reflect on the huge amount you’ve learned and feel very proud of yourself.

Week 39-45

During the next seven weeks, you’ll be assessed on a variety of technical tasks, as well as your leadership ability. Mixing the two is vital for your development, so you can motivate and engage the teams around you.

Week 46

Some more rest, happy in the knowledge that you’re near the finish line.

Weeks 47- 51

Ready to look after an Area? This is five weeks of in-at-the-deep-end exposure to life as an Area Manager. You’ll cover for your colleagues while they’re on holiday and really put your skills to the test.

Week 52

It’s time for your final review and we’ll look at how far you’ve come. By now, you should be full of confidence as you take responsibility for your own group of stores.

Click the icon to download the brochure


Where will you fit in?

1. We’re divided up into thirteen regions.
2. Each region has its own Head Office led by:
3.   a Managing Director a Group of Directors  an Administration team.
4. Each region has its own Regional Distribution Centre (RDC) which takes care of the flow of goods.
 5. We also have our Corporate Head Office based in our Atherstone region.
6. As an Area Manager, you’ll report to the Store Operations Director
7. and look after the people, processes, efficiencies and targets of three or four stores
8. The store managers and their team of Assistant Deputy Managers plus Store Assistants will look to you for leadership.
9. You'll be the link between these stores and the warehouse teams back at the RDC.

Year two and beyond

You’re now a fully-fledged Area Manager, with complete control of your area. All kinds of challenges and demands will come your way.

But with world-class training under your belt, and as part of a network of Area Managers, you’ll know what to do or have someone to offer advice. Most of your time will be spent visiting your stores and getting weekly updates from your Store Managers.

Because we're growing so fast it's likely that you'll spend one day a week on recruitment and development - so you'll receive plenty of training on how to put together the perfect team. 

After a number of years in the role, you could be offered a secondment in the UK, US or even Australia. All will give you an even greater appreciation of store life, and an excellent foundation for your future Aldi career.


Where will the role take you?

Area Manager
Secondment Opportunities

We’re passionate about giving our people amazing opportunities. In fact, the more effort you put in, the more you could get back. Some of our Area Managers take on specialist secondments, or even excel into a Director position. You might find yourself managing business-changing projects for Store Operations or heading up exciting strategies in Corporate Buying. Lasting 18-24 months, all of our specialist secondments are an amazing opportunity to learn more about our business, and yourself. Watch our videos above to learn more.


International Secondment

After a few years, for those who really impress us, there’s the chance to do a secondment in Europe, the US or even Australia. It means you’ll soak up different Aldi cultures, bring fresh ideas back to Ireland, and take your personal and professional development up a gear. You see, although you’ll be familiar with our business, you’ll be pushed out of your comfort zone, and given a new platform to show everyone how capable you are. But don’t worry – wherever you are in the world, you can expect the same Aldi support.

And while it’s the same job on paper, it’s likely that you’ll find yourself learning from scratch. That’s down to the subtle and not so subtle variances in cultures and operating markets. One way or another, it will require a real sense of adventure, resilience and open-mindedness. Why not take a look at David’s story?

David – Buying Director (Ireland)

- University of Newcastle upon Tyne 
- Engineering Degree 
- Joined Aldi in 2006

"When we expanded across all five states, including New York City and Downtown Boston, I was right there at the coalface. I was seconded to ‘South Windsor’, one of the US divisional offices that looks after stores across five states. Aldi were extremely supportive as I planned my departure, helping to arrange visas and travel. They also offered plenty of insight into my new area. On arrival, there was even more support: a thorough orientation, help with accommodation, bank accounts and phones, plus mentoring from a local colleague. Aldi was in its infancy in the greater New England area but experiencing huge growth. I went from working in Dundalk Co. Louth to interviewing staff for Queens, New York. Amazing."


Who we're looking for

We wouldn’t be this successful without recruiting strong-minded, brave people to share our ambitions. We do have quite a specific culture. It’s well-managed, efficient and everyone works in harmony with a combined sense of purpose. Responsibilities are crystal clear and everyone knows what’s expected of them. The question is, do you have the kind of qualities we need? Take a look at our video to learn more about our environment, then try the quiz to see if you could be an ‘Aldi’ person.


You’ll need a minimum of:

- 2:1 in any degree discipline

- An Irish driving licence

- The right to work in Ireland



€61,000 starting salary

Your generous starting salary will rise in stages to €102,850.

A fully expensed BMW 3 series

It’s very smart, that’s for sure. It arrives on day one so you’ll need a driving licence.

Health & lifestyle

Alongside the great pay, you'll be able to take advantage of some fantastic lifestyle perks we have to offer. These include money off holidays and discounted tickets to events and more!

Opportunities to travel the world

If you’re performing really well, we might suggest a UK, European or even International Secondment (typically to the US or Australia). This tends to happen within your first four years.

Excellent work-life balance

It’s important to us that you feel looked after, now and in the future. You’ll be given five weeks’ holiday every year plus bank holidays. There’s also a pension scheme (after 2 years) , private healthcare and life assurance.

Training & support

With a dedicated mentor from day one, you’ll get the support you need to achieve your potential. But that doesn’t mean your learning will end after the programme. In fact, you’ll get development opportunities throughout your Aldi career.

Your own €multi-million business

This is the big one. As soon as you’re ready – which could be even less than a year – you’ll take full responsibility for up to four stores.

Application process

So you’re ready to apply. Spaces go very quickly and it’s really competitive. However, if you’re the kind of person we’re after, that won’t put you off. In fact, you’ll be thinking ‘bring it on’. You should be aware that we may ask you to consider working in a location other than your initial preference.


Applications for our 2021 Aldi Graduate Area Manager Programme are now open. Applications will close 30 November 2020. 




Online Application

You’ll need to complete an online 
application and various tests that will 
assess your judgement and 
analytical skills.


Online Test

You’ll be sent a link to complete an online psychometric test. This has been designed to measure your core skills and personal qualities, to see if we're right for each other.

Video Application

This is a chance to impress us in a five minute video called ‘Who am I?’. Show us you’re a determined, charismatic leader who we couldn’t do without. We understand that filming this kind of thing can be daunting for some, so we’ve included a helpful film clip above.

Group Assessment

Group Assessment is hard. You’ve got to work as a team, but still let us know that you’ve done your homework about Aldi and that you’re a natural leader. 
It’s a fair and consistent process, but make your presence known!



Well, you’re nearly there. If you’ve passed everything else, you’ll progress to an interview with your Regional Managing Director. Successful candidates will then progress to final interview with members of the Regional Director Team.




Why not meet us in Person?

You can find some great information, and even chat to our current Area Managers at a whole range of events. To help you find your nearest event, we’ve put together this little calendar. We’ve also included important dates such as application deadlines, which you can then put into your diary.