Senior Manager, Sensory Innovation at HersheyCareers

Posted in Other 11 days ago.

Location: Hershey, Pennsylvania

Job Description:

Job Location: Hershey, PA

The Sr. Manager Innovation, will be responsible for oversight and team leadership (experienced project leaders and statistician) responsible for the development of all Consumer Learning Plans that incorporate Sensory Product Guidance support. Responsibilities include allocation of SCI resources, setting priorities, and meeting project goals and timetables within budget constraints ensuring that the Company's Growth targets are met/exceeded. They will be responsible for managing the Sensory Consumer Research Budget of $1.4M. Additionally, this role supervises the R&D Statistician in their consultancy role supporting R&D and CI projects and teams, the R&D Digital Transformation initiative, web app development for streamlining and automating work processes, and as a contributor to the Innovation team. Supervision includes oversight of the Statistical Training Program encompassing execution of quarterly training modules and development of new modules (online and in-classroom) with the strategic intent of increasing statistical proficiency among R&D employees and broader Hershey employee base.
The successful candidate will work independently and as part of a team to design, collect, analyze, interpret, and report sensory and consumer data that provide actionable guidance and business recommendations to cross-functional teams. He/she will utilize their knowledge of consumer and analytical sensory methods to lead research for innovation, advance upstream research initiatives, and growth platforms. This role encompasses application of knowledge in consumer research testing, analytical sensory methods and statistics to meet project objectives. The individual will interact extensively with R&D business partners, Commercial and Innovation Marketing, Marketing Research, QRC, Operations Engineering, and Manufacturing Operations personnel.
The successful candidate will share responsibility with the Director for the development of a 3-5 year strategic plan contributing to the development and advancement of department capabilities to meet the needs for R&D 2025 Vision. Responsibilities also include engaging with internal stakeholders and key functional teams, the development and implementation of a "capabilities road show" to broaden visibility and reach of the Sensory & Consumer Insights function within CGO and the broader organization.

Summary of major responsibilities:
Innovation/New Business Development Support (North America): The Sr. Manager will lead a team of four Sensory and consumer research professionals that serve as liaisons to their assigned brand teams, strategic growth platform teams (i.e. Better For You, Morning, etc.) and R&D partners working on upstream research to advance NA growth initiatives. They will oversee all testing support by this team and management of the R&D Statistician and training program. While most projects will be led by their direct reports, this role does entail independent leadership of complex and/or strategic projects (i.e. Packaging Sustainability, M&A, etc., representing 5-15% of projects annually). The role entails participating in recurring project meetings and working with cross-functional team members to define project objectives, direct prototype development, and design research protocols (includes consumer, discrimination, and descriptive testing). Planning, execution, analysis, and interpretation of sensory/consumer tests, including working with external vendors; communication of results both verbally and in report/presentation format leading to sound recommendations and business decisions. Recurring Sensory team meetings to gain and maintain alignment on methods and best practices; etc. This role collaborates with business partners to develop and oversee Consumer Learning Plans, allocate resources, set priorities, goals and timetables for projects.
Talent & Organizational Development: Provide overall leadership as it relates to People Development and Team Structure: Attracts, leads, manages, and mentors employees in such a way to ensure retention, development, and high performance of talent. Establishment of Cool Opportunity and cross-training programs in SCI for Career Growth & Development for the benefit of career advancement within R&D. Provide mentorship and technical support to broader Sensory Dept. (U.S. and Global satellite programs) and R&D personnel. Broaden the visibility and reach of Sensory within Hershey via the development and implementation of a "capabilities road show".
Knowledge and Capability Building: Assessment and implementation of new sensory and consumer research methods and tools to drive capabilities, efficiencies and performance. Interface with suppliers and industry professionals to assess and incorporate new research approaches and serve as company functional representative. Outsource foundational research needs to support BFY/sugar sparing technology development and build proprietary knowledge in that space. Oversight of Statistician in their consultancy role (R&D/CI/R&D Digital Transformation, etc.) and Statistical training program encompassing online and in-classroom training modules with strategic goal of advancing statistical knowledge and application within R&D and broader organization.
Budgeting and Administrative Responsibilities: Responsible for managing Sensory Consumer Research budget of > $1.4M, and oversight of general accounting principles by SCI Innovation team to ensure company policies and procedures are adhered to. Administration of other company policies and procedures.

Minimum knowledge, skills and abilities required to successfully perform major duties/responsiblities:
* Proven track record of success in people leadership: several years of experience leading direct reports, coaching/mentoring, talent development.
* Effective collaborator and demonstrated ability to influence across and within functions that represent diverse viewpoints. A strategic and tactical thinker with ability to multi-task and prioritize with limited supervision.
* Demonstrated expertise and proven success in research design, advanced statistical analysis including model development, and reporting of complex studies to generate insights and business direction. Design of Experiments (DOE), product optimizations, category assessments, and drivers of liking (DOL)).
* Demonstrated depth and breadth of knowledge and project leadership of quantitative and qualitative consumer test methods to drive new product development and continuous improvement (CLTs, online surveys, etc.).
* Demonstrated knowledge and application of sensory analytical methods (descriptive, discrimination).
* Excellent organizational, communication, interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence.
* Demonstrated expertise in two or more of the following statistical analysis and programming software (i.e. SAS, JMP, R, SPSS, StatsGraphics, Minitab, etc.) and advanced statistical techniques (conjoint, regression, correlation, factor and cluster analysis, principle component analysis, etc.).
* Bonus Expertise: Management/working knowledge of Product Development, global consumer research, consumer database development, strategic sourcing RM/Commodities, Desc. Analysis SME & program management (incl. panel training), ethnographic research, geofencing consumer res., mobile survey platforms.

Minimum Education and Experience Requirements:
Education:B.A., M.A. or Phd degree in Food Science (Sensory), Statistics, Market Research or related discipline

Experience:Typically a Bachelor's degree in Food Science, Statistics, Market Research, or equivalent plus 12-15 years' experience or a Master's degree and 10-12 years' experience or a Ph.D. and 8-11 years applicable work experience. Experience should have been obtained while functioning as sensory & consumer researcher and in managerial positions. Significant technical and/or scientific contributions should have been demonstrated through new product launches, product or process optimizations, strong technical leadership of projects and publications,.


The Hershey Company is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The policy of The Hershey Company is to extend opportunities to qualified applicants and employees on an equal basis regardless of an individual's race, color, gender, age, national origin, religion, citizenship status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, transgender status, physical or mental disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, pregnancy, or any other categories protected by applicable federal, state or local laws.

The Hershey Company is an Equal Opportunity Employer - Minority/Female/Disabled/Protected Veterans