• Technical, Quality & NPD
  • South Wales

Head of NPD – 883866 – £60000

Title:    Head of NPD                                                   Reference: 883866

Location: South Wales


Job Summary:

This position requires considerable previous experience in food manufacturing environment, a BSc or equivalent in a food-related discipline and proven Product Development and Project Management experience in a leadership role.

Key Responsibilities:

Tasks will include but not be limited to the following:

  • Setting the overall NPD Strategy with senior team, generating a strategic NPD programme to drive focused, commercially viable and achievable development plans.
  • Developing relationships with key customers to help build strategic partner status
  • Managing the overall NPD team, with direct reports of 2 Development Chefs, ensuring time and resources are allocated accordingly to deliver NPD projects on time & in budget.
  • Co-ordinating the resource requirement with the commercial team for the Chefs and the Technologists to ensure that all internal and external meetings are attended, and trials are implemented.
  • Acting as the gatekeeper for all initial development project briefs from both the customer and commercial team, reviewing & challenging against business strategy & viability where required. –
  • Responsible for maintaining a robust development process, ensuring continuous improvement as required, to deliver all launches to a high standard and timely manner.
  • Maintaining clear communication channels with internal departments through appropriate and timely project meetings and briefings –
  • Developing and maintaining a working knowledge of all factory production and processes to inform NPD decisions, attending factory trials where required.
  • Ensuring that any customer visits for pre-productions and first productions for new products are scheduled, communicated and resourced.
  • Through the management of the Technologists, engage with the Technical and Operations team to assess any potential process issues, risks to food safety and legality at start of the development stage, ensuring all HACCP/allergen requirements are met.
  • Work with commercial and finance teams to ensure all products are commercially viable and adhere to the financial hurdles set out by the company.
  • Act as the main gate keeper of the NPD budget regarding expenditure and testing requirements as well as courier charges, analysing customer development spend and managing the R&D tax relief scheme.
  • Acceptance and management of EPD plans and upgrades whilst supporting the business’ cost reduction strategy for raw materials and packaging.
  • In conjunction with Purchasing, assist in building and strengthening supplier relationships (from an NPD perspective) with new and existing suppliers, ensuring we are first to market for any new ingredients that suit our applications/customer requirements.
  • Implement a gap analysis and competitor review programme to identify range and product opportunities.
  • Identify and evaluate food trends in conjunction with the development chefs and commercial team to support the overall business NPD vision and customer strategy within a rolling two-year horizon.
  • Develop a bank of blue-sky products in order to create a product pool that can be used to respond to briefs.
  • Develop the competencies of NPD team to deliver high quality service and ensure stability with cross skilling where required.


Key Skills

  • Strong leader with good interpersonal and communications skills with the ability to communicate across departments/suppliers and external customers.
  • Strong organisational and project management skills to assist with critical path deadlines and project priorities.
  • Ability to problem solve and deal with a complexity of products, projects and customers.
  • Confident and knowledgeable manner to engage with customers.
  • Good understanding of factory production process requirements and raw material performance.
  • Able to effectively time manage to structure the team’s day efficiently with regards to differing priorities/workloads as well as working to tight deadlines
  • Experience of managing and developing team members.
  • Hardworking and passionate with an eye for detail.
  • Competent with all major software packages


Our Referral Incentive:

Due to the high amount of interest that we receive for each of our roles unfortunately we cannot respond to each application individually, therefore if you do not hear back from us you have not been shortlisted for this role. Please continue to check our website for any other roles which may be of interest.

We offer a £500 referral if you introduce someone we place – see our website for details – www.rp-ltd.com

We regret that this client is not prepared to sponsor work permit or work permit transfer applications. Candidates must be able to prove their eligibility to work in the UK


To apply for this job email your details to info@rp-ltd.com.

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