grapefruteglobe Findus / Iglo / Nomad Foods
Job Title: Assistant Product Development Manager m/f (Specifications & R&D)
This role is ideal for a product developer / food technologist with 2-6 years in a food / FMCG company and wants to grow his/her career. (permanent contract). We can welcome candidates with either R&D or Quality background. The APDM will spend his/her time for 2/3 in specifications management and 1/3 in R&D.
The Assistant Product Development Manager role is a significant role in the organisation which requires experience in product development and technical project management to implement the agreed program. The role requires the ability to “self start” and work independently with minimum supervision.
A passion for food is essential as is an element of work-related travel (e.g., to co-packers, other Nomad Food sites, suppliers etc).
- Good knowledge of key ingredients, supply chains & manufacturing processes through conducting trials & regular contact with suppliers, procurement & SUs.
- Awareness of consumer habits, practices, usage, needs & preference drivers within the allocated product area.
- Identify & develop new products/technologies based on an awareness of the consumer & of the business requirements & capabilities.
- Apply our knowledge of preference drivers in product development work.
- Understand the cost / value equation & apply it in product design – which attributes do consumers really value and want to pay for and which they do not value.
- Ensure the nutritional profile is given a high priority when designing new products or renovating existing ones, highlighting issues and opportunities and ensuring products met the nutrition KPIs. Act as an ambassador of the company nutrition policy.
- Build & maintain strong relationships with colleagues in R&D & other functions (MU’s, SU’s, TQS, Procurement & the Category Marketing).
- Technical project management of straightforward NPD & EPD projects (eg a new variant) in accordance with the agreed procedures to ensure successful and timely delivery of the projects.
- Encourage cross-fertilization of knowledge with colleagues in R&D.
- Provide technical input to support product claims, PR, advertising & trade/consumer enquiries.
- Maintain a constant awareness of competitor activity, regularly review competitor products & propose routes for maintaining competitive advantage.
- Provide R&D input to project gate documents
- Proactive & timely communication of opportunities, progress, issues, risks etc to R&D management & key stakeholders.
- Embrace company values and culture change (eg PACE, R&D DNA) and drive self-development
- Support professionally managed projects in accordance with agreed procedures to ensure successful and timely delivery of the projects, from idea through to launch.
- Represent R&D within cross-functional teams to deliver range extensions, renovations, innovations and cost savings.
- Ensure support in order to ensure all products in the allocated product area are profitable, competitive, legal & meet brand requirements.
- Provide all specifications (raw materials, consumer, product, packaging), BOM’s and Safety by Design data, whilst ensuring products, raw materials, packaging and ingredients are harmonised wherever possible.
- Ensure all necessary trials are completed satisfactorily and documented, reference samples stored & risks communicated. Monitor costs of trials.
- Ensure product approval process is completed (including actions identified) and responsibility transferred to SU & QA.
- Ensure all products/prototypes used for consumer research are safe and representative.
- Generate accurate technical data.
- Take responsibility for self-development and exhibit PACE behaviours.
- R&D Leadership Team.
- R&D Product & Category etc. throughout Europe.
- R&D Culinary and Sensory, Packaging.
- Data Management.
- Marketing – central and local.
- Category Boards (CATs).
- Consumer Insights.
- Nomad Foods Europe factories.
- Sales & Retail customers.
- Quality & consumer complaints.
- Ingredients & processing suppliers.
Knowledge & Skills
- Food raw material & process science.
- Product design & development.
- Understanding of consumer & customer requirements.
- Nutrition understanding.
- Innovation tools e.g. insight gathering, concept writing (basic understanding).
- Sensory & consumer testing – qual & quant (basic knowledge).
- Project management.
- Financial awareness is beneficial.
- Local & European Food Product & labelling regulations understanding (basic understanding).
- Specification systems and origination.
- Recipe systems / SAP (ideally).
Building knowledge to win
- Meeting consumer needs – know which attributes of products and packs are important for consumers and deliver projects to maintain and optimise them within commercial constraints.
- Creative Mindset – propose creative solutions to R&D challenges through good understanding of technical systems and business barriers, learning from previous experience in R&D.
Developing successful innovation
- Project Management and Delivery – manage project resource and track progress against milestones, managing and mitigating risks on the way.
- Optimising technical delivery – manage all the project steps in an activity and provide technical input for gate documents, including technical risk management and any action plans required.
Delivering our portfolio
- Building and improving specifications – build product and/or pack specifications, write ingredient specifications and obtain approval from suppliers.
- Applying insight for competitive advantage – analyse, summarise and make recommendations for product development using consumer data.
Delivering R&D capability
- Delivering Quality to the consumer and customer – create clear specifications and technical briefs to define the key elements of a product that ensure consumer and customer expectation for quality is met.
- Scientific Thinking – understand how to design and test a hypothesis, set up work to do this and be able to clearly communicate results, conclusions and reasoning.
- Relevant Science Degree – e.g., Food Science or experience in FMCG product development
- Proficient in English language
- Some experience of working in FMCG food business
- Experience of working in pan-European teams
- Experience with frozen food (not essential, nice to have)
Nomad Foods is a leading frozen foods company. With our anchor investment in Iglo Group completed in June 2015, we intend to continue supporting Iglo’s organic growth initiatives as well as pursue strategic acquisitions to build a portfolio of best-in-class food companies and brands within existing and new categories. Iglo is the ideal foundation to execute a build-up strategy across the packaged foods sector.
Our Ambition for Nomad Foods:
- Build a world-class global consumer foods company
- Invest in leading food companies with proven track records and strong management teams
- Support organic growth and strengthen our market leadership in each of our geographies and categories
Our acquisition criteria:
- Market leader in a niche market
- Protective moats around the business
- Experienced management teams
- Strong free cash flow characteristics
- Diversified customer and supplier base