Northern European Product Development ManagerName: Vicki Cash
Company: McCormick UK Ltd
Brief overview of your job
To manage the product development activities and programme for Northern Europe, ensuring that all agreed projects are delivered within the cost, quality and to the timescale demanded. Manage and develop the Northern European team of Home Economists and Technologists, through training, recruitment and personal development.What does your job involve?
Responsible for product development and support of the complete portfolio of consumer products across the Northern European Zone, including UK, Switzerland and Finland, worth in excess of £100m
Responsible for branded product development including the Schwartz and McCormick brands, in addition to own label product development, including M&S; and Sainsburys
Launched in excess of 150 SKUs across Northern Europe in 2003, including a Schwartz herb and spice re-launch, a new salad category and a range of wet sauces for fish. Launches in 2004 include a range of packet mixes for vegetables, Count on Us cooking sauces for M&S;, and new varieties for the Real Paste range.
Manage and develop the R&D; department, including home economists and technologists, motivating and supporting all team members to maximise their potential
Project manage the NPD process from concept through to launch, producing and maintaining critical paths for each project
Ensure that all projects are delivered within the cost, quality and to the timescale demanded
What do you most like about your job?
People management I have a great team of home economists and technologists we all enjoy our jobs and work well together as a team.
Working on the Schwartz brand, which is well known and respected both within the food industry, and by consumers. Its a brand to be proud of! I also like the fact that I am helping consumers to liven up their eating occasions by developing exciting new products for them to try.
Seeing products I have worked on the shelves in store is always a great buzz, especially when you see a consumer pick your product up and put in their trolley to buy. It makes the hard work worthwhile.
What skills are required in your job?
What is your advice to people looking for a career in the food & grocery industry?
I started out on a graduate management training programme, which I would recommend as it gives you a great foundation and understanding of the different functions within the food industry.
Career so far:
Bass Brewers (Take Home)
Hazlewood Foods Plc
M&S;, Baker Street, London, in conjunction with John Rannoch Ltd, Suffolk
Did you complete an industrial placement as part of your degree?