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Technical Manager

Please Note: The application deadline for this job has now passed.

about us

itsu is the healthy eating, Asian inspired quick service retail & grocery brand with over 70 stores in the UK and a leading wholesale business across Europe and beyond. Renowned for its delicious food made fresh in every shop, every day, itsu has huge global ambitions with a commitment to continue to open many more stores and intensify the growth of its already thriving grocery arm. With its best-is-class food, latest technology, innovation, and talented workforce, itsu is the future of fast food.

scope of the role

Lead itsu’s technical strategy to always provide the highest quality and safest ingredients across the itsu estate, today and in the future. The Technical Manager owns the responsibility from field to fridge.

The Technical Team sits within the Food Safety Department:

Technical Strategy

  • Lead the development and implementation of itsu’s Technical Strategy, to deliver high quality, safe and responsibly sourced ingredients
  • Lead the development and implementation of all Supply Chain aspects of itsu’s Allergen Strategy, while supporting the Head of Safety in the wider Allergen Strategy.
  • Work with Head of Commercial to ensure the itsu supply chain can operate with franchise partners within the UK and across international borders
  • Support itsu’s Sustainability Strategy, including the responsibility for sourcing and nutritional commitments

Technical Support

  • Be the go-to expert for ingredient queries and issues within itsu
  • Manage quality issues/incidents, ensuring learnings and action plans are put in place for optimal recovery in future
  • Support unexpected changes within the supply chain (e.g. capacity crunches, factory relocations and crisis management) and develop solutions
  • Visit stores to review ingredients, resolve issues, and pro-actively seek feedback from store managers

Supplier Management

  • Maintain and manage the technical relationship with our food suppliers, via visits and 3rd party audits
  • Manage the supplier audit and complaint process, including closing off all non-conformances and issues raised, plus summary reports to itsu stakeholders
  • Ensure appropriate technical processes are in place across the supply chain (manufacturers, third party suppliers, and logistics)
  • Manage all itsu ingredient due diligence, including traceability, security and safety of the supply chain
  • Ensure that a thorough and current ingredient risk assessment is in place with the appropriate HACCP

Finished Product Administration

  • Ensure every Made-to-Sell (MTS) and Bought-to-Sell (BTS) ingredient have an up to date specification set
  • Responsible for the legality of all itsu MTS ingredient labels and the published food information, including online platforms, packaging artwork and in store communications to be compliant with Natasha’s Law
  • Responsible for the legality of all itsu BTS labels and the published food information, including online platforms, packaging artwork and in store communications
  • Responsible for the legality and accuracy of the itsu allergy matrix and the published allergen information, including online platforms and in store communications
  • Ensure appropriate life for itsu ingredients factoring in safety and quality - recommend appropriate life extensions

Projects, NPD and Innovation

  • Work closely with the Buying Department and wider business (including Food/How To, Operations and Safety Departments) to optimise itsu’s ingredient range driving quality, sustainability and commercial improvements
  • Take responsibility for proactively seeking improvements / finding solutions with suppliers
  • Manage with the Buying and Supply Departments the sign off, set up and roll out process of the new ingredient / ingredient change in to itsu stores

the ideal candidate

  • Minimum 5 years’ experience within a Technical Function within the food (restaurant/retail) industry and preferably Food-To-Go
  • Expertise of working with a range of different food categories with strong knowledge of UK food regulations
  • Experience of leading technical functions
  • Technical strategy development and implementation experience
  • Preferably qualified to a relevant Food Science, Food Technology or Microbiological degree standard or equivalent
  • Level 3/4 HACCP certified
  • Knowledge and deep understanding of BRC certification and/or equivalent certification standards
  • Internal & external audit experience & knowledge of food safety systems (HACCP) - Lead Auditor trained preferable
  • Experience of managing and developing Quality Management System (QMS)
  • Knowledge of the management of allergens, with insight on upcoming legislation and its implications on the industry
  • Experience in working with international suppliers (Asian suppliers preferred)
  • Excellent computer proficiency (MS Office – Word, Excel and Outlook)
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including ability to effectively communicate with internal and external customers.  

You put people at the heart of everything you do by displaying the 4 itsu qualities:

  • I take pride [in what I do]
  • I genuinely care [for people]
  • I want to grow [myself & others]
  • I build trust [around me]

things we like

Listeners, empathisers, commercial thinkers, humble individuals, challenging minds, critical friends, collaborators, creatives, those who have people at the forefront of their mind, those who are themselves, inclusive and who strongly stand for integrity & equality.

perks and benefits

  • Private medical insurance
  • Company pension scheme 
  • Group income protection
  • Life assurance
  • Health cash plan
  • Employee assistance program
  • Critical illness scheme
  • Food allowance 
  • Discounts at major retailers
  • Cycle to work scheme

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