When a customer picks a product from the shelf, he or she seldom stops to think about the huge amount of work that got it there.
They'd be impressed if they did.
Our Supply Chain team performs a vital role in the organisation, beavering away to deliver results on time, time after time after time.
Moving £600m worth of products from A to B and from C to D and guaranteeing freshness from field to fork is a really tough job that we do on a huge scale. The fact that the 19 people in the team actually enjoy all the challenges involved says a lot for their expertise and enthusiasm.
Working out of Croydon head office and part of the Logistics department, the team maintains on-shelf availability in stores by running the auto-replenishment system and purchasing stock from suppliers.
There are two levels within the team - Inventory Manager and Senior Inventory Manager - both of which involve placing purchase orders on suppliers, ensuring that the flow of products into and through the warehouses is efficient, and seeing that deliveries meet on-shelf availability targets.
The senior role has a larger and more complex portfolio, involves planning on longer timescales, often including seasonal demand, and also may be a first line management position.
There is also a Supply Manager role, a first line management position responsible for managing the teams and building relationships with other departments. It ensures that seasonal plans are built and delivered and involves project work like managing exports to other A.S. Watson business units, improving promotional replenishment systems and processes and managing replenishment and availability of our online store.
No stock means no sales. Lost opportunities in transport are lost profits. If we don't always go forwards we go backwards.
That's why our Logistics department has a whole Supply Chain Development team dedicated to improvement and innovation from supplier to shelf.
Based at Dunstable and Croydon the team takes care of stock and order for Savers, the transport team at Dunstable, national store delivery planning, and development of the supply chain for the future. It makes a direct impact on deliveries to 240 Savers and over 800 Superdrug stores.
More than 100 people work in the team although many of them are agency workers. They deal with stock and order, transport organisation, project work including tendering, and in some cases people management.
The most common qualities we look for are common sense, practicality, a can do approach and the willingness to learn and work hard. You need to be a strong team player too.
The most regularly occurring opportunity is Inventory Manager.