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Innovation Manager Desserts

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Date: 03-Jul-2022

Location: St Albans, GB

Company: Premier Foods

A great British food company 

Premier Foods is one of Britain’s biggest listed food companies, employing over 4,000 colleagues at 15 manufacturing sites and offices up and down the country.

Many of our brands have been part of UK life for more than a century and you’ll find them in 94% of British households.

At Premier foods we believe in inclusion, authenticity and individuality. We aim to ensure all existing and potential colleagues are given equitable opportunities and are respected, valued and encouraged to bring their true authentic selves to work no matter who they are, what they look like, who they love or what they believe in. Our culture is one where everyone is welcome. 


Innovation Manager - Desserts

Based in St Albans/Hybrid WFH



  • Premier Foods is a business with great momentum, with a purpose to enrich people’s lives through food. We’ve been doing it a long time - many of our much-loved brands have been part of UK life for more than a century. We have an ambitious vision for growth driven by Innovation, targeting 10% of the Company’s turnover to be driven by Innovation each year.


  • We are looking for a talented innovator to help drive our ambitious pipeline forward on our much-loved Desserts brands, including Ambrosia, Angel Delight, Mr Kipling and Bird’s.


  • You will be responsible for supporting the Innovation Controller in development, and delivery to market of the innovation pipeline. This includes renovation of our core heartland, as well as exciting expansion Big Bets into new segments.


  • Much of the innovation pipeline is an incremental growth driver to our Desserts business over the next few years, growing our brands’ penetration, usage and relevance within and beyond traditional occasions. This role is a chance to be at the centre of this exciting journey, with a hands-on opportunity to make a meaningful, visible impact on our success.


  • You will…
  • Identify big innovation opportunities by partnering with the Innovation Controller to support the development of the pipeline strategy
  • Facilitate internal ideas generation with cross functional teams to create winning concepts
  • Ownership of NPD projects from concept to launch; seeking out the optimised solution of product, pack and execution as you work closely with a cross-functional team
  • Accountable for the successful pipeline delivery through the business gate cycle and commercial targets
  • You’ll be part of the Desserts team, working alongside the brand Managers, Controller and Director, reporting to the Innovation Controller.
  • You’ll play a critical role in identifying the next exciting product opportunities by partnering closely with Insights and R&D.
  • We have exciting momentum and big ambitions for transformation on Desserts. We therefore need a strong leader who is up for and energised by the challenge to operate at pace, aim high, make our vision for brand expansion a reality and bring your creativity to life.


What you'll be doing:


  • Contribute your ideas to the long-term pipeline. Helping to create a funnel of qualified activities, winning concepts and strong rationale.
  • Play a key role in the development of the pipeline through the exploration of consumer insight and market trends.
  • Help shape the commercial strategy to form winning ideas, by identifying opportunities from category and trade lenses, and applying base understanding to a P&L. 
  • Take accountability for the successful launch of NPD projects, working to delivering on time and in full against the business targets:
  • Own the business case through the gate stage process
  • Influence timeline targets
  • Lead project meetings from an innovation/brand lens
  • Product: brief and review of recipes with R&D; support validation with Insight & Sensory teams
  • Design: brief origination through to repro sign-off
  • Budget: Process POs
  • Supporting external sell-ins: creating sell stories; organising samples
  • Supporting internal communication of projects: support/build content for Sales Conference
  • Support the Innovation Controller to drive a strong business case for the strategy within our cycles i.e. strategy reviews and annual sales conference.


What we need from you:


  • 3+ years successful experience within a leading FMCG or other brand-led organisation.
  • A mix of innovation experiences including innovation development and project ownership.
  • Strong bias for action, a high degree of personal accountability and an entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Track record of working cross-functionally and leading projects to successful results in market.
  • Strong analytical skills; comfortable digging under the surface to uncover insights, reach logical conclusions and recommend actions back to the business in a compelling way.
  • An individual who has a track record of getting the best out others with a collaborative and inclusive style.


What we offer you in return:

  • Competitive salary
  • Car allowance
  • Bonus
  • Up to 7.5% pension
  • Private medical insurance
  • Life assurance
  • Wide range of online and in-house training
  • Access to an employee discount scheme, with access to hundreds of nationwide retailers