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FOOD SERVICE CUSTOMER INNOVATION MANAGER



FOOD SERVICE CUSTOMER INNOVATION MANAGER


AAK Foodservice, a division of AAK USA, a Swedish based, world leading producer of high value-added specialty vegetable oils and fats, is a National Foodservice Manufacturer and supplier recognized as the leader in Customer Service and Innovative Solutions. Our purpose is to improve the quality of life of our customers and our employees. We make it our mission to ensure the safety of all employees, develop a highly engaged workforce, and enable our customers to meet their goals while operating in a sustainable and ethical fashion.


We make safe, enjoyable food for customers and consumers while adhering to our team values. At AAK Foodservice we encourage and challenge each other, by speaking honestly and openly and being committed and accountable to one another. We have high expectations of ourselves and rely on one another to produce an enhance trust within our team.


Due to unprecedented growth, we are currently seeking to hire a Food Service?Customer Innovation Manager, located in our Hillside, NJ headquarters.


The role of the Customer Innovation Manager is to assist the FS VP of Sales and Marketing in the development and implementation of the business plan for AAK Foodservice in support of global objectives. This will include providing R&D expertise and managerial leadership on trends, research, product innovation, and new product development pipeline execution to drive overall AAK FS business. The CI Manager will lead and manage projects for specific applications, customer and market opportunities, and production optimization. The CI Manager will communicate the external needs of customers and the FS Sales team with the internal departments to identify project opportunities.


This position will focus on activities to commercialize formulations successfully and implement new products in a timely manner. The CI Manager will also focus on developing robust interdepartmental processes related to new formulas, and optimization of existing formulation. The position is a cross-functional leadership role with close interaction with operations, quality and commercial teams.


ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:


? ?Provides strategic focus and people leadership for CI products and delivers on CI priorities, assist the FSLT in the development and execution of long range of business objective


? ?Develops CI team's annual objectives, CI plans and targets to help secure value enhancing customer innovation projects that align and drive the overall value of AAK FS portfolio of businesses.


? ?Creates a strong culture of customer connectivity leading to an increased volume of projects in the pipeline


? ?Develops and executes the strategic and tactical plans for areas of responsibility, including new product development, startups, cost savings, product renovation, and technical sales support


? ?Initiates and drives customer-specific projects, developing custom products and solutions in line with the latest scientific and market developments


? ?Supports AAK?s customers in providing technical advice on recipes and validating product specifications


? ?Translates customer requirements to the appropriate production processes and quality specifications


? ?Supports the Quality department with relevant information to create Master Formulas and batching instructions by organizing, understanding, and assessing technical information


? ?Evaluates raw material packaging sizes for new and existing formulas to minimize write offs and project manages changes, working with Quality Control, Operations, and Sales & Marketing


? ?Works closely together with global and regional sales colleagues, visiting customers and representing AAK at trade-fairs


? ?Accountable for leading and driving the budget for Customer Innovation segment in close coordination with Sales and Marketing


? ?Organizes technical seminars for customers and providing training for colleagues


? ?Maintains up-to-date awareness of applicable new technology and Food industry trends and their impact on technical and business needs



AAK USA, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer that is committed to workforce diversity. EOE. M/F/D/V.










QUALIFICATIONS:


? ?College degree in Food Science, MS Preferred


? ?Minimum of 10+ years of relevant experience within a food company. Experience working in the Foodservice industry, developing solutions for FSD and Chain Account preferred.


? ?Minimum of 3 years managing teams responsible for product development, Food manufacturing preferred


? ?Good technical knowledge of food ingredients, finished goods, their applications and specifications, and scientific developments in health and nutrition is required. Knowledge of fats and oils is a strong advantage.


? ?Technical understanding of the specific Foodservice industry in terms of product quality, raw materials, processing, and how quality is impacted by recipe and processing


? ?Excellent communication skills, fluency in English, Spanish a plus


? ?Strong project management, time management, and organizational skills


? ?Fundamental computer skills (data entry, MS Office including Excel) Proficient with an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system experience will be helpful.


? ?This role requires the employee to have a sense of urgency, be a team player, have the ability to multi-task, organize and interact with key players in an interdepartmental team environment


? ?Self-starter with a strong internal drive to succeed that can question/challenge information being given, identify gaps and areas for improvement


? ?Candidates must be authorized to work in the US, now and in the future, without sponsorship.





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