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Group Manager, R&D-Pet Food
Simmons Foods, Inc 118 reviews - Emporia, KS




Group Manager, R&D-Pet Food

Simmons Foods, INC.

Emporia, KS

Simmons Pet Food Division is looking for a Group Manager, R&D, for their facility in Emporia, KS to provide leadership to a team of direct reports in addition to being an individual contributor of project responsibilities. Ensures that R&D projects involving product development are delivered in accordance with customer (internal or external) time, scope and cost objectives. Responsible for the development of new products and / or improvement of existing products, takes leadership in innovation and technology initiatives to meet customer support and strategic business objectives. Project, Product Champion. Product champion for responsible product platform. Manages product portfolio and ensures adequate balance of project distribution within team. Ensure that proposed timelines fit with prior project performance history (by type and customer) as well as existing project load of assigned individual and that the project plan proposed includes all necessary steps. Fits new customers into our existing array of products or develops line extensions or product improvements for existing customers. Meet with customers independently of supervisor, with sales account manager to define scope of new projects. Assist in evaluation of target brand evaluation and monitoring efforts. Product Development. Competent in the full length of the product development cycle, which includes conceptual development, formulation, implementation, process validation and continuous management and improvement. Works closely with the technical staff of customers or suppliers, mentoring junior and senior scientists. Reviews work output of direct reports, approves for next phase of process and mentors and develops staff skills. Develop, bench test, scale-up, and commercialize new products/technologies in accordance with guidelines established in Project Initiation Request. Factors include product attributes as well as development costs, finished product costs, and timing. Demonstrate product and project ownership to ensure that all parameters are optimized for won and team projects. Review product formulations/process characteristics across products and plants and identify opportunities to simplify the system and/or capitalize on cost savings opportunities. Make suggestions to supervisor and, if applicable, senior operations management regarding potential improvements.

Nutritional, Regulatory and Finished Product Compliance. Utilize existing product formulation approach to assure finished product nutritional adequacy (label and nutrition claim) applying statistical data from key raw materials (z values). Develop a label deck from a master formula which considers all potential processing locations. Submit product for analytical or animal testing as required by supervisor and summarize results. Participate in project teams to evaluate product non-conformance incidence with products under their total portfolio responsibility. Collect and analyze information as required to analyze raw material/process interactions. Process, Operations and Supply Chain Support. Lead supply chain initiatives including formula transfer among plants, evaluation of new suppliers of raw materials, increased or decreased use of existing raw materials, and evaluation of processing parameters. Assist in process evaluation testing as required by supervisor. Develop knowledge of critical process points in conjunction with process engineering group. Summarize results of previous tests and of sequential processing conditions or runs for a particular formula to assist in troubleshooting and data interpretation. Project and Portfolio Management. Manage the total project portfolio in accordance with overall directive of supervisor for own and team projects. Issue project updates and alert supervisor of circumstances which may impact ability to deliver desired results with contingency plan in place. Issue project final reports are requested.

Minimum Education: Bachelor's Degree in Meat Science, Animal Science, or Food Science or 4 years related work experience.

Technical Experience: Must have excellent computer skills with respect to the Microsoft Office Suite. Experience with Concept 5 is a plus. Will be expected to quickly learn the business integration software suites including JDE and IQS.

Industry Experience: 5 years’ experience in product development and technical services is required. Experience requirements are commensurate with education. Experience in commercial product and/or process development is required.

Preferred: R&D knowledge/experience in food or pet food. Experience in commercial product development. Knowledge of animal nutrition and food formulation. A working knowledge of current pet food/food regulations in various countries. Knowledge of animal nutrition and food formulation and thermal process.

Must have experience in Pet Food R&D.

Job Type: Full-time

Required education:

  • Bachelor's

Required experience:

  • product development and technical services: 5 years
  • Pet Food R&D: 1 year


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