A space planner is a person who scouts locations and determines how those locations can most effectively be used. The space planner can design a layout and acquire the necessary furniture or equipment to complete the actual layout. In order to become a space planner, you will need to have basic math skills as well as communication skills. While not necessarily required, a high school education is almost always preferred, and post-secondary training in design may also be helpful in order to become a space planner. In some industries, you may need a bachelor's degree or higher.
College coursework that deals with business, design, and even computer-aided design (CAD) will help you become a space planner. A bachelor's degree program will give you the skills necessary to become a space planner, though you may also be able to secure an apprenticeship that will give you the same skills. This is not a very common route, but if you do manage to secure an apprenticeship, be prepared to spend anywhere from one to four years learning the basics of space planning. You can also take lower-level jobs that have to do with design, such as store planning or interior designing. If you work in retail, try to take part in any activities that involve space planning, such as improving or otherwise changing the layout of a store, or improving space efficiency in a store or warehouse.
Once you earn the proper degrees or other credentials, you should expect to work as an assistant before you can become a space planner on your own. This is a good opportunity to improve your skills and learn tips and techniques from a more experienced planner. This period of training is also a good opportunity to develop a good relationship with an employer as well as potential clients. You will probably earn a lower salary as an assistant, but the potential to move up into a head position is significant, especially if you learn quickly and thoroughly.
You will probably need to become certified as a space planner as well, which may involve passing a certification exam. Once you are certified, you will need to work with various types of planning software, so computer training is highly recommended. CAD courses should be a high priority, though you should research other programs commonly used in the field and get training in those programs as well.