MPB Careers: Sainsbury’s – Product Developer

Product Developer –  200010LX)

As a Product Developer, you will be part of a team that are at the heart of identifying new trends and inspiration to launch innovation, where it matters most to our customers, to deliver the commercial plan.  You will be the custodian of customer quality measures ensuring that we bring innovation to market with pace but also our customers love our products!

You will also use your passion and energy for trends, innovation and product to bring to life opportunities and work with the supply base and development chef to deliver from concept to product.

You will be responsible for delivering projects that support the product plan and innovation strategy for your area, working with cross-functional teams and suppliers. You are the custodian of customer quality measures for Sainsbury’s Brand and will set insight-led customer quality measures for all products developed across all tiers using all the insight tools available to you.

You will typically work across a varied number of sub-category areas and manage small projects with well-established suppliers.

What you need to do

  • Working with the Category Development Manager, cross-functional teams & suppliers to shape & deliver the Product Plan for your sub-category areas, ensuring compliance to all Gated Process requirements & documentation
  • Be the custodian of taste/quality through identifying & setting customer quality measures for all products developed, ensuring this is customer-insight led, e.g. online reviews, paneling reports & customer complaints
  • Utilise all insights available, e.g. Nectar (Customer), Hunter (Trends), Commercial Metrics, to inform Gate 1 strategy, project objectives, Product Briefs, and in PIRs/Gate 5s to ensure we are driving quality & distinctiveness in the areas where it matters most to our customers, and are capitalizing on new & emerging trend opportunities
  • Lead the creation & delivery of the Product Brief for all new & improved products, ensuring alignment internally & with suppliers on objectives, and accountable for ensuring the critical path set is achievable, whilst making sure to challenge timelines where appropriate to deliver at pace
  • Keep up to date on trends and understand what is happening in the market place and competitive set and use to inform the category teams and drive the innovation
  • Delivery of product requirements from our Net Zero commitments, such as driving nutritional improvements and supporting the delivery of packaging targets
  • Manage the end-to-end process of design generation; ensuring compliance to all steps & documentation; writing design briefs that are customer-insight led; accountable for product titles, sub-copy & photography that drive customer appeal, and deciding on labeling (e.g. health claims) & cooking instructions that are right for the target customer
  • Accountable for the accuracy of customer-facing product information, such as product title, sub-title, cooking instructions and claims (e.g. health claims) on-pack & Sainsbury’s Online, eliminating inconsistencies & errors
  • Support category supply base management and supply strategy and provide input for VCAs, tenders and PQFs as appropriate
  • Working with business partners i.e. in PR, Marketing, Sainsbury’s Online, & Internal Comms, and posting on Sainsbury’s Internal Social Media (Yammer) to gain support for, and increase customer & colleague exposure to, new products & ranges

What you need to know and show

  • Degree or equivalent in relevant discipline
  • Experience of product development from retail, manufacturing, food service or equivalent
  • Commercial awareness and cost structure knowledge
  • Good communication and presentation skills
  • Passionate about new trends & delivering innovation
  • Ability to interpret and analyze data
  • Demonstrates strong drive & influencing skills to work effectively in cross-functional teams
  • Good project management & planning skills
  • Good knowledge of manufacturing & quality management principles
  • A clear targeted personal development plan to enhance judgement, drive & influencing skills

The colleague values should underpin all our roles. Some examples below for how you could demonstrate these values within the role:

  • We are trusting each other, working together: building strong supplier relationships through excellence in communication, providing support in troubleshooting product development challenges
  • We are making it simpler: driving compliance in the Gated Process through completing all templates & reporting requirements to enable better centralised reporting
  • We are delivering great service, driving sales: Using customer-led insights, e.g. Hunter & Nectar, to drive a product strategy that resonates with our customers to improve the success rate of product development and drive market share
  • We are making it happen: Setting achievable critical paths, and challenging stakeholders on meeting timelines to improve speed of new product development and meet target launch dates
  • We are treating every pound as our own: understand the cost of goods in product submissions and identify opportunities for cost improvement whilst maintaining the right quality for the target customers
  • We are cheering on our progress: Recognises good performance by other colleagues and gives feedback to improve the performance of others

What decisions I can make including budget

  • Sign off on Customer Quality Measures – setting the measurable quality standards for all new & improved products
  • Setting product direction for new & improved ranges through the Product Brief & development process
  • Setting design direction through the Design Brief & process
  • Sign off products from a Customer Quality Measures perspective at a Gate 4 (first production)
  • Sign off product artworks from a design perspective – i.e. product title, sub-title, & photography

Flexible working and job share conversations are encouraged. Across our multi-brands, we’re proud to be an equal opportunities employer that champions a diverse and inclusive culture.

If you’re reading this, even if you’re not 100% sure you’re there with your experience, we’d still love to hear from you.