NPD Manager

Full Time, Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Main Purpose of Job: End-to-end project management to launch product innovation into the UK and International baby food markets; proficient project delivery in line with ever changing retailer range changes; bring profitable, genuine innovation to grow the category and increase brand share; validate consumer, commercial and category needs

Key Responsibilities:

  • Attend food shows and review consumer insights to identify market trends/consumer needs /innovation – feedback observations to the team and build innovation pipeline
  • Efficient end-to-end project management to launch profitable new products for the UK and export markets liaising with key stake holders across the business
  • Build & manage relationships with new and existing suppliers to develop products in line with technical, nutritional, commercial & consumer needs
  • Brief and lead product development requirements with the suppliers to produce optimum products / recipes /packaging  against key criteria
  • Challenge supplier capabilities to deliver true innovation
  • Lead taste panels with the wider Kiddylicious team to validate new products against key criteria – feedback to suppliers as required
  • Work closely with the UK and International sales teams to understand commercial needs and establish product pack formats and price points
  • Calculate and validate product pricing in line with company margin aspirations
  • Work closely with the Technical Manager to ensure all new products comply with technical/nutritional/ethical standards. Liaise with company nutritionist  when required to validate key claims and on –pack messaging
  • Brief the Creative team to develop artwork which clearly communicates the product USPs and aligns to brand guidelines
  • Lead monthly NPD meetings to update team/review all projects against NPD criteria – update product development crib sheets accordingly
  • Liaise with external packaging companies/printers to ensure all artwork is to spec and approved by all necessary team members
  • Support sales team to ensure they have commercials, samples, artwork and robust USPs as required for retailer presentations
  • Attend retailer presentations as required to present new products to the senior buying team
  • Work closely with logistics team to ensure supply chain efficiencies – including producing pallet plans and optimising transport costs
  • Manage factory trials and attend first production runs to ensure all product elements are to spec
  • Take feedback from internal teams and consumers to deliver continuous improvement of existing product ranges
  • Educated to degree (or equivalent) level in marketing, business or project management

Key Technical Skills/Knowledge/Professional Qualifications Required:

  • 5+ years project management experience including managing key stake holders and adhering to tight deadlines
  • Knowledge of the food retail industry and a clear understanding of the product development process from concept through to launch
  • Working knowledge of technical aspects of food development/innovation
  • Experience of managing multiple projects and working under pressure to tight deadlines
  • Exceptional commercial acumen – awareness of retailer and company margin aspirations

Key Personal Skills Required:

  • Exceptional organisational skills and the ability to prioritise and manage own work load – must be flexible and able to re-prioritise accordingly
  • Enthusiastic and dynamic yet collaborative team player with a high degree of integrity and personal responsibility
  • Ability to influence and negotiate across all levels internally and externally
  • Ability to react positively to rapidly evolving brand requirements
  • Personal drive, tenacity and energy
  • Proven experience of and ability to perform as part of a small entrepreneurial
  • Strong English communication skills with the ability to converse at Director/MD level (both verbally and in writing)
  • Strong computer literacy skills
  • Keen interest and curiosity in new products and food trends

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