The Associate Category Manager drives Category performance through detailed analysis of vendor proposals and agreements, product assortment, pricing and change analysis including historical changes and future forecasting. The position is focused on optimization of category activities to include; new product review, assortment review, vendor negotiations including RFP and RFI activities and pricing work related to the assigned category.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Provide detailed analysis and track growth for assigned category, focused on the areas of; product assortment, pricing, promotions, new product introductions, pricing changes etc. Maintain regular reports to track performance and identify impact of variables on category performance against established metrics. Identify and report on trends, changes and opportunities and provide suggestions aimed at increasing category performance.
Develop RFPs and RFIs, review vendor proposals, draft and review agreements and contracts to support the category’s success through the course of vendor negotiation and management.
Manage and maintain relationships of small to medium vendors leading product review, identify and assess opportunities and negotiating promotions for conferences. Additionally, the associate manager will negotiate with vendors who currently do not have in-place agreements with USF.
Review and assess vendor performance reports, identify issues and provide recommendations to Category Manager.
Conduct product assortment review and analysis, identifying top-performing SKU’s. Identify areas for potential growth and analyze impact of proposed assortment changes. Recommend changes/actions to the Category Manager, aimed at enhancing category effectiveness and performance.
Review category pricing reports on a regular basis, identifying potential pricing issues and opportunities. Conduct a detailed analysis on the impact of pricing and assortment changes and provide findings and recommendations to the Category Manager.
Support the category by developing category-specific communications, including product launch support materials, training materials and point-of-sale materials, distributing to the field.
Maintain close relations with USF Regions and divisions understanding their unique needs and perspectives, and ensuring their needs are addressed/met in the overall category strategy. Liaise with divisions to resolve escalated merchandising issues.
# EOE Race/Color/Religion/Sex/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity/National Origin/Protected Veteran/Disability Status
*Education/Training:*Four year Bachelors degree in business or related field required.
*Related Experience:*Minimum 3 years experience in retail, food service or with a consumer goods company. Prior experience in vendor relations, pricing and management of product assortment required. Prior Category Management experience strongly desired.
*Knowledge/Skills/Abilities:*Must possess the ability to operate successfully in a matrix environment and work effectively across multiple groups and levels.
The successful candidate will have solid quantitative and analytical skills and the ability to work in a team setting. Must posses, or be able to rapidly develop a strong knowledge of products within assigned category and division sales requirements. Must be able to provide fact based recommendations across various levels of management. The ideal candidate will demonstrate a high degree of motivation, the ability to prioritize and self direct, strong business acumen and sound interpersonal skills. Strong verbal, written and presentation skills required. Must possess an expert proficiency in MicroSoft Excel and an intermediate proficiency with Microsoft Word and PowerPoint. Prior experience with Microsoft Access a preferred.
**Primary Location:** Rosemont-IL
**Schedule:** Full-time **Shift:** Day Job
**Job Function:** Category Management
**Job Level:** Individual Contributor
About US Foods
Why US Foods? As one of America’s top 10 largest private companies, we offer talented professionals outstanding opportunities for personal and professional development. We maintain a strong focus on growth in a high-performance environment. That means your work will be challenging and rewarding. We conduct business in a highly ethical manner and maintain an unwavering commitment to operational excellence, safety, and environmental responsibility. As important, we encourage collaboration and value each member of our diverse and talented team.