Start date: 2018
“After studying Geography and Business Management at the University of Aberdeen, I applied for the Samworth Brothers graduate scheme because I wanted to work in the food industry, but wasn’t sure about the role I wanted to go into. This scheme gave me the opportunity to discover that through the various placements. I also wanted to work for a company that made efforts in their environmental impact, especially around sustainability, as this is something I am passionate about.
My first placement was at Walkers Deli & Sausage, working as a Commercial Executive, where I was responsible for internal the daily and weekly performance reports and I also conducted analysis on the promotions we ran. I also looked after a sub-category for one of our customers and was responsible for the forecasting and analysis on promotions and trials we ran.
My second placement was at Bradgate Bakery, within the Category and Insights team. My role was supporting the team and researching the UK food-to-go market to try and understand where there were gaps and opportunities for us, and what customer trends were arising and sharing this insight with our product development teams.
My third and fourth placements were in Sales and Marketing at Ginsters in the South West. I spent a year in this role and it gave me the opportunity to experience the branded world as my previous two placements had been within own label. In the sales side of my role, I was responsible for looking after my own account and attended customer meetings, built customer plans and negotiated with the buyer. In the marketing side of my role, I was responsible for updating the Ginsters website, creating branded monthly newsletters to share with our customers and also helping coordinate the sampling events throughout the year.
Towards the end of my final placement, I began looking into the world of ecommerce as this quickly became a priority for the business, then when I completed the scheme in September 2020, I became an E-commerce Executive across the whole savoury pastry category. In April 2021, I was promoted to an E-commerce Manager and now have an executive working with me. My role incorporates digital marketing elements, such as improving our imagery online and product descriptions, as well as working with the commercial teams to understand what more we could be doing online to drive sales, such as considering if we have the right products and the right promotions online.
For people thinking of applying to the graduate scheme, I would say: “Be open minded about the roles you go into, even if you feel apprehensive about some. The collective experience and knowledge you gain will be invaluable as you progress in your placements and finally into your permanent role as you will have a deeper understanding of how departments and businesses work together. It’s also a great opportunity to network and meet people across the group.”