To maximise product quality, food safety and profitability by identifying opportunities for product quality and value improvement, ensuring alignment with brand and category strategies and implementing into markets through the structured gate process for approval and launch and driving improvement in supplier and product performance. Must deliver value across all European markets.
Delivering product improvement, product development and supplier development projects across the category to agreed plan and timescales aligned with category and brand strategy.
- Assessing capability of new suppliers and advising of suitability for approval process and any action required.
- Delivering improved quality performance across category through actioning routine sampling, complaints, incidents and sales.
- Working with key stakeholders to ensure all gate processes are followed.
- Mentoring of suppliers and purchasing teams in understanding and delivering target product and acceptable quality standards.
- Working to ensure specifications and quality attribute sheets contain all relevant product quality, safety and integrity information in line with brand and commercial expectations.
- Ensuring technical plans are aligned with category and brand strategies.
Carrying out quality assurance and improvement projects as directed by Quality Improvement Manager
- Projects delivered meeting brand requirements to agreed timescales
- Improvement demonstrated in category supplier performance, QNet complaints, sampling and incident performance
- Relationships with key stakeholders
- Work is well structured with clear objectives, timelines and technically sound outputs which drive tangible quality performance
- Product knowledge of products throughout European countries
- Identification and delivery of opportunities to add value
- Develop and deliver technical plans to enable delivery of the category and brand strategy that will help drive profitability.
- Manage the process of supplier and product development and testing, ensuring brand approval at each stage to agreed timescales and outputs using the structured gate approval process for supplier and product approval.
- Work with key stakeholders in each market: food safety manager, food scientists, operations teams, purchasing, supply chain and product management team to ensure that safe products enter into the food supply chain from only approved suppliers.
- Proactively manage category supplier performance in all areas of quality, food safety and development.
- Investigate and resolve food safety, quality and/or integrity issues escalated by store facing teams including QNet, quality testing, nutritional verification or supply chain, working with key stakeholders to find lasting solutions.
- Develop long-term partnerships with key suppliers and stakeholders that will deliver sustainable value.
- Identify and scope out opportunities in the category to deliver improved value.
- Work with technical team to ensure specifications and quality attribute sheets are in place and reflect product requirements for accountable categories and ensure all approved products have GTINs and product codes where relevant.
- Lead product summits for accountable categories as part of overall summit plan managed by Quality Improvement Manager and manage timely delivery of outputs and actions from the summit.
- Develop and drive quality improvement projects with suppliers (securing stakeholder buy-in, defining critical path, providing clear feedback / progress reports).
- Carry out other projects as directed by the Quality Improvement Manager to support quality, safety and integrity of food supplied to.
Qualifications, skills and knowledge:
- Strong, proven experience in similar role
- Thorough understanding of bakery category, food technology, relevant country legislation, food hygiene, audit and quality management systems
- Product management and commercialisation experience in a highly networked environment
- Proven track record of working cross-functionally with key stakeholders
- Self-motivated and able to work as part of a team
- An interest in food (enthusiasm to work with and taste ALL types of food)
- Willing and able to travel across Europe and beyond if necessary
- Auditor and HACCP experience
- IT literate
- Knowledge of German preferred but not essential
- Strategic/commercial focus; understands business strategies and those of suppliers to ensure robust partnerships; they will be organised with the ability to cope with the demands of a changing and fast-paced environment
- Initiative/“entrepreneurial” approach; hands-on approach with the ability to think laterally to resolve issues/problems; works independently and as part of a team and operates effectively within a flexible, fast-paced, small business environment
- Influencing and communication: excellent communication skills at all levels, keen attention to detail and able to both write and present technical information in a concise manner
- Ability to work on own initiative and prioritise in a high-pressured environment is essential
- Analytical acumen; able to collate and evaluate data