VP of Merchandising & Sourcing at Crowd Cow
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VP of Merchandising and Sourcing
About Crowd Cow
How many times in your career do you have the chance to create a ubiquitous consumer brand, build an entirely new supply chain, and change a big part of the food system? Our mission is more critical than ever. More people are looking for ways to purchase high quality food products, without leaving their home, and we are an important part of that food supply chain. Additionally, our marketplace allows our farmers and ranchers a vehicle for getting their proteins into the homes of consumers across America, thus helping them to continue their life's work and sustain their farms.
Crowd Cow is a mission-driven startup founded in 2015 with the idea that the most important of food purchases – beef and other proteins – deserves to be associated with high-quality practices, total transparency, and close connection to the independent family farms producing the food. The Crowd Cow model isn’t the norm: In this country, 84% of beef comes from industrialized and factory processes that don’t benefit consumers, small-scale farmers or animals.
Today, Crowd Cow offers the most convenient and direct way to purchase meat and seafood from independent and family-owned farms, giving American consumers access to a world of craft beef, chicken, pork, and seafood, more diverse and flavorful than most people realize. We’re also creating opportunities for the very best independent producers to reach more customers and to showcase their unique traditions in ways never possible via the internet.
In today's current environment, our mission is more critical than ever. Our business continues to thrive, as more people need access to high quality meats and seafoods, without having to leave their homes. Our model also allows farmers and ranchers a way to continue getting their product into America's food supply chain.
The VP of Merchandising & Sourcing is responsible for the overall strategy and execution of sourcing, product assortment, promotion, and pricing across all categories to maximize sales and profit.
The role provides leadership by empowering direct reports with ownership over their individual categories and logistics and collectively is responsible for meeting the target metrics of sales, COGS, margin, inventory availability, market share, and overall profitability.
The role sets the promotional strategy for sales and curates the assortment to differentiate us and adhere to our brand pillars.
This Leader fosters a culture of collaboration across the organization to optimize work processes that improve quality, customer satisfaction, sales, and profitability. The VP of Merchandising and Sourcing is energized by challenges and establishes goals that achieve profitable business growth.
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Key Roles and Responsibilities:
Develop merchandising strategies across all categories that align strategically with the company's objectives, brand pillars and financial goals.
- Manage category business planning and forecasting, assortment decisions, merchandising, sales promotion, price position, and gross profit management.
- Evaluation and recommendation of inventory forecasting and management tools.
- Develop and manage product promotional plans and implementation to ensure alignment with the long term strategic product and promotional plans and company goals/vision.
- Develop/train Category Managers; manage team and increase internal talent to support company growth.
- Develop and manage product promotional plans and implementation to ensure alignment with the long term strategic product and promotional plans and company goals and mission.
- Align merchandising standards and processes to support seasonal planning for the marketing and selling channels.
- Research business, market and consumer trends and conduct executive level product strategy reviews to identify trends and new product categories to drive growth.
- Strategically manage, develop and enhance the Company's vendor relationships and work with category managers to maximize those relationships and optimize product costs.
- Address supply issues impacting cost, quality and delivery
- Ensure all merchandising operations align with the defined category management principles- develop processes and audit mechanisms where there are gaps, coaching and training others to develop competencies
- Empower and challenge Category Leads to own their category by incorporating individual points of view and ideas into their strategy backed by data and analysis
- Manage vendor relationships to maximize COGS in every negotiation. Is firm and is willing to push, will take a risk and ask for more, while maintaining professionalism and health of the long-term relationship
- Actively participate as a collaborative member of the Executive Team; establish strategic direction for Crowd Cow as it pertains to Merchandising and Sourcing, incorporating the Strategy Focus, Mission, and Values.
- Strong leadership and negotiation skills
- Ability to set challenging goals and work through others to achieve results
- Proven ability to negotiate and/or influence vendors or leaders for outcomes that are productive and beneficial both short and long term
- Ability to build business relationship across the organization and foster a culture of collaboration
- Excellent communication skills – both verbal and written
- Strong analytical skills; demonstrated ability to drive analysis into action
- Ability to lead a team to build and manage a consumer-driven business
- Understand the needs of the customer, competitive environment and trends
Education & Experience:
- BA/BS or equivalent work experience, MBA a plus
- 10+ years experience of multi-category management in merchandise buying and experience managing procurement/operations functions, required
- Food/meat industry and project management experience is preferred
- Thorough understanding of Category Management; success in executing best practices.
- Proven success in employee growth/ development, training, and talent planning.
- Strong negotiation skills required.
- Demonstrated ability to develop business strategies.
Full Time employees receive medical benefits, 401K and a generous PTO package.
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