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Associate Manager Innovations, Europe

Posted Date:  May 4, 2023
Requisition Number:  118430


Associate Manager Innovations, Europe (based in London, UK)




The EU Innovation Associate Manager will be part of the EU Marketing Team and will be reporting to the EU Innovation Manager.


This role is responsible for designing and developing innovation projects for core brands in the European Markets.  He or she will work with the Innovation Manager to create a pipeline of initiatives on core brands (Reese’s and Hershey’s) that will address trial barriers, expand Hershey’s brand penetration and grow Hershey’s sales and shares in Key European Markets (UK and Germany).


The role will manage the innovation process and lead collaboration with internal resources and stakeholders, partnering with cross functional teams to advance innovation projects through the Gate process, advocating the use of Project Management Tool (Accolade). Proactively launching based on agreed dates, resourcefully mitigating risks and maintaining a list of ‘Opportunity’ projects as back ups to replace ‘Plan’ projects that may fall down.


The Innovation Associate Manager will support the Innovation Manager with a set of concrete plans for the projects he or she is responsible for.  The role requires strong project management skills and a well developed set of marketing and general management skills to convert strategies into successful innovation projects that will grow sales, share and profit across Europe.  He or she should have strong analytical skills to sort through complex data, make well-reasoned conclusions, and translate these into sound plans, with a drive for protfiability through strong P&L management, overall linked to the Innovation Strategy (Expand Take Home, Win in Seasons and Grow Hershey as Second Brand).


To effectively perform his or her duties, the Innovation Associate Manager must be proficient in all of the following key qualities as defined by The Hershey Company: 

  1. Leadership
  2. Problem Solving
  3. Communication
  4. Initiative and Follow-through
  5. Accountability
  6. Collaboration
  7. Creativity
  8. Technical Mastery



Major Duties/Responsibilities: 


Summary of Major Duties:

Design and develop innovation on core brands and platforms for EU

Under the supervision of the Eu Innovation Manager, he or she will:

  • Manage consumer-led and insight-driven innovation projects geared towards building a robust pipeline of innovation initiatives.
  • Manage initiatives that will address trial barriers and enable the Reese’s and Hershey’s brands to expand penetration.
    •  Collaborate with internal resources (Consumer Insights) and stakeholders (Brand Marketing / Customer Marketing) to discover and validate trial barriers, and to initiate innovation projects that will effectively address these. 
    •  Lead multi-functional teams (R&D, OBD, QRC, Supply Chain, Finance and Legal) to: (a) advance innovation projects through the Gate process, (b) successfully meet project objectives, product and packaging design parameters, pricing goals and financial hurdle rates, and (c) ensure that projects are at a launch readiness state based on agreed launch timelines in the key markets.
    •  Support the EU Brand Marketing Team to: (a) build a validated 2-Year Gross Sales Forecast for each project, (b) develop Year 1 Marketing Plans for each project, and (c) finalize the region-specific packaging and labels for each project.


Lead Innovation Process for Projects

  • Lead regular multi-functional project team meetings for his or her assigned innovation projects to move these through the Gate process, providing meeting notes with clear actions and timings.


  • Present Gate documents and lead discussions on innovation projects during Sales & Marketing / Integrated Business Management meetings.
    •  Ensure that presentations and reports are clear and provided to all stakeholders in a timely and actionable manner. 
    •  Drive decisions on innovation projects based on recommended actions.


  • Ensure Accoldade is up to date, with SKU plans locked in time. Keeping projects on track to hit ETA and key deliverable dates.


  • Collate and build all elements of the P&L, with a clear understanding on areas that can be influenced to drive a profitable product, within a portfolio mix.


  • Work with design agencies / procurement and packaging engineers to deliver a strategic look and feel to the portfolio, through cost effective solutions.


  • Drive R&D / OBD discussions to ensure profitable COGS on all projects, through clear briefs and benchmarks.


Business Analysis and Recommendation

  • Conduct business review analysis to identify and propose opportunities, and develop innovation plans to address trial barriers, expand Hershey’s brand penetration and drive sales, share and profit growth.


  • Leverage insights and knowledge gained from market, consumer, customer and competitive data to build actionable recommendations and plans to address uncovered opportunities to the business.


  • Use available internal and external information to review business performance and to influence marketing plan formulation and implementation in Europe.



Minimum Education and Experience Requirements: 



Bachelors Degree or equivalent


  • At least 3-5 years working experience in marketing departments (preferably in innovations) of international Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG)
  • Strong project management skills, with prioritization and ability to work under pressure with sizeable workloads and tight deadlines
  • Strong knowledge of business process, key functions and data analysis
  • Ability to understand and drive an impactful P&L
  • Proactive in finding creative solutions outside of scope
  • IRI/Nielsen proficient is a preference
  • An understanding of UK and/or German retailers, channels and consumers within chocolate category is a preference

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