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Project Manager


Emeryville, CA, US, 94608

Req ID:  23538

Rich’s has been able to pull off something rare in the business world: a culture that successfully blends the latest business practices with family values.  That means our associates are able to work for a great company while also benefiting from a work environment that fosters world class professionalism combined with family intimacy.  Our benefit offerings are reflective of this unique blend of Life, Work and Family .



f’real, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rich Products Corporation, designs, sells and markets authentic milkshakes, smoothies and frappes all made from real ingredients - ice cream, fruit, milk and coffee.  Consumers freshly blend our delicious products in our patented blender in over 20,000 locations across the US and Canada, primarily at convenience stores and colleges and universities.  


The Project Manager reports to the Director of Product Development and will be responsible for efforts to generate new product development and drive innovation. With a passion for creating distinct and memorable food experiences for our customers you will develop and test new and existing raw ingredients, finalize formulations and reap the rewards of seeing your unique creations come to life. This role is responsible for the development of products including technical, formulation and sensory validation. Development is focused on supporting category objectives and leading consumer driven innovation into the market. This role works closely with the vendors, brand managers and supplier management teams to identify opportunities, clarify direction and bring product concepts to life, as well as problem solving to meet the needs of the business. This role has a strong cross-functional leadership component and interfaces with Engineering, Sales, Marketing, Finance and Customer Support teams internally and with external customers.


Primary Responsibilities

  • Understands customers, technology and competition and supports product development strategy
  • Understands strategic and competitive position in market to deliver best-in-industry products
  • Supports product lifecycle plans for categories and provides transition recommendations through ingredient and processing technologies.
  • Leads cross-functional and project teams to deliver strategic initiatives.
  • Work closely with industry experts to develop and test new and existing ingredients, develop and finalize formulations and pass the sensory approval process.
  • Develop an understanding of current and future food and industry trends. Apply and share this knowledge in the development and planning process.
  • Review product portfolio on an ongoing basis to ensure relevance and best quality in marketplace. As required take steps to optimize portfolio by addressing code date and product performance issues. Make recommendations through the product lifecycle process to optimize existing offering.
  • Partner with the Ops team to provide detailed briefs to vendors and clear product development targets and timelines. Work with vendors through all stages of the development process to ensure concept to execution targets are met. Work with team to ensure brand and project targets are being met and provide clear and directive feedback to vendor to ensure project remains on track and address sidebar concerns
  • Manage plant trials and support first productions to optimize the product development process and take corrective actions to ensure products deliver to targets and understand variability of process and work with vendor to develop clear standards including targets and acceptable product ranges.
  • On-time management of critical Product Development control points related to project management and contribute to the total team on time delivery through collaboratively managing timelines and taking corrective actions to deliver the overall product plan, while ensuring product standard and targets are met.
  • Present new products to the team and to the broader organization to drive understanding of product concept and unique product attributes and overall product context with historical understanding.
  • Development of new product specifications and ensure appropriate process controls are in place for the ongoing delivery of product standards.
  • Regularly attend relevant trade shows and courses to continuously develop and remain current on latest trends and technology and functional developments to build category knowledge and address potential concept challenges.


Desired Skills & Experience

  • 7+ years’ experience in food product development in CPG and foodservice categories
  • Minimum of 3+ years’ experience in food production facilities (internal or co-packing)
  • BS/BA degree preferably in Food Science, Nutrition (Culinary degree a plus)
  • Convenience store channel and/or International channel experience a plus
  • Labeling, Regulatory and Legal Substantiation experience a plus
  • A passion for great food, an excellent palette and a creative edge
  • Strong organizational and time management skills with the ability to prioritize projects and tasks to meet timelines
  • Problem solving skills and collaborative thinking
  • Experience leading teams and/or projects across functions
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, interpersonal skills, presentation skills and relationship management
  • Advanced computer skills with the ability to learn systems quickly
  • Passion, creativity and desire to deliver the next line of great F’Real products!


Position Core Competencies

  • Market Knowledge: Understands the key market dynamics, trends & the competitive set; leads customer insights
  • Customer Focus: Knows key customers, helps outline objectives and develop key initiatives to address their needs and our goals; helps measure impact of product offerings; active exposure to customers and stores
  • Strategy/Planning: Active contributor to the development of the Product Development Plan, Business Review; develops key initiatives to support the plan; distills issues & opportunities to draw conclusions & implications
  • Team Leadership: Ability to lead team on key initiatives; builds collaborative relationships across multiple cross functional groups, especially Marketing, Operations, Engineering & Sales
  • Communication: Strong oral and written communicator with little coaching; competent in presenting to small and large groups
  • Financial acumen & analytics: Strong knowledge and utilization of key data systems, reporting, analysis, implications, and the key P&L levers; some management of budgets and/or forecasting 


Personal Attributes

  • Exceptional leadership and interpersonal skills
  • Strong cross functional communicator & collaborator
  • Thrives in entrepreneurial environment - can be scrappy, creative and resourceful while also building structure and process
  • Innovative and creative thinker
  • Decisive and biased towards action – strong sense of urgency
  • Comfort working in a fast-faced, constantly-changing environment
  • Can-do attitude


Job Requirements

  • Some level of travel required for plant trials, production start-ups, strategic vendor visits, customer and company meetings (approx. 15%) 

Rich Products Corporation, its subsidiaries and affiliates (“Rich’s”), are committed to a policy of Equal Employment Opportunity and will not discriminate against an applicant or employee on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, national origin or ancestry, sex, age, physical or mental disability, veteran or military status, genetic information, sexual orientation, marital status or any other legally recognized protected basis under federal, state, or local law. The information collected by this application is solely to determine suitability for employment, verify identity, and maintain employment statistics on applicants.


Applicants with disabilities may be entitled to reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act and certain state or local laws. A reasonable accommodation is a change in the way things are normally done which will ensure an equal employment opportunity without imposing undue hardship on Rich’s. Please contact Rich’s Human Resources department if you need assistance completing this application or to otherwise participate in the application process.

Nearest Major Market: San Francisco
Nearest Secondary Market: Oakland

Job Segment: Manager, Marketing Manager, PLM, Management, Marketing

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