Vice President of Innovation

Simple Mills

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Vice President of Innovation

 

Job Description:

The Vice President of Innovation works with the Simple Mills innovation team to lead the development of our new and existing product lines.  The position reports to the CEO and leads the Marketing Innovation Team, Strategic Procurement, Research & Development (including food scientists), and Innovation Product Change Management. The role serves on the Simple Mills Leadership Team.

 

Role Responsibilities:

Leading the Innovation, Strategic Procurement, Research & Development, and Innovation Product Commercialization Management Teams

  • Establishing and executing multi-year innovation pipeline from concept to commercialization
  • Oversees the Innovation Team that is responsible for:
    • Identifying and assessing innovation opportunities, performing competitive assessments, and developing product concepts
    • Monitoring trends and external landscape
    • Managing cross-functional innovation timelines
    • Benchtopping concepts, developing recipes, testing recipes at the plant, and commercializing recipes
    • Creatively solving innovation challenges presented in the development and commercialization process
    • Partnering with Finance to forecast innovation revenue and profitability
    • Partnering with Quality and Contract Manufacturing to optimize and continuously improve product quality
    • Partnering with Marketing and Operations to monitor and refine products post-launch
    • Partnering with suppliers and growers to identify and source unique ingredients
  • Communicating and aligning team against company strategy, mission, and plans
  • Develops, coaches, and recruits new team members the Innovation team
  • Partner with sales leadership and key customers to stay connected to critical retail trends and customer’s pressing problems to solve.
  • Coordinates innovation efforts with the Brand Marketing, Finance, Supply Chain, and Contract Manufacturing teams

 

Qualifications:

The successful applicant will have the following minimum qualifications:

  • A deep passion and curiosity for natural food, healthy eating, holistic health.  A desire to positively impact our food industry.
  • Minimum experience of 10-15 years’ experience in marketing, innovation, or research & development for a CPG brand.
  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience managing cross-functional innovation projects.
  • Entrepreneurial mindset.  Appreciation for ambiguity.  Ability to create structure and organization from scratch, creatively solve problems with incomplete information, and roll up sleeves.
  • Experience partnering with contract manufacturers to execute innovation.
  • Ideal candidates will have a master’s degree in business or related field.
  • Exceptional leadership, interpersonal, and communication skills.  Includes the ability to have supportive but candid conversations with leaders of all levels and tenure and the ability to communicate and build alignment across a fast-growing organization.
  • Strong analytical, decision-making, and problem-solving skills.

 

Next Steps:

If you are interested in this role, please send a cover letter to sean@simplemills.com, answering the following questions on one sheet or less.  Applications that omit the cover letter and associated questions will not be considered.

  • Describe your interest in the natural food industry and holistic health.  How does this curiosity and interest show up in your life?
  • What has shaped your views on health and nutrition? What books have influenced these views?
  • If we paid a surprise visit to your kitchen today, what would we find in your pantry?  Please share a picture of your pantry showcasing some of the main brands that embody your views on nutrition and health. 
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