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Head of Product Data Management

Job ID:
Data & Analytics
London, England;
Bengaluru, Karnataka
Date posted:
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Job Title: Head of Product Data Management 

Location: UK/ India


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For Unilever to competently operate in the new digital world, we will need to significantly transform our processes, behaviors, cross-organization structures & supporting IT eco-system to enable fast, accurate and seamless end-to-end management of the data, content and codes that are directly related to the individual components and products (CUs) we buy, produce, sell and advertise. 

The way we manage Product Data today is manually intensive, fragmented, inefficient, complex, siloed and often inaccessible to those who need it to effectively carry out their role in providing data to customers and consumers. It takes many touchpoints from the creation of an innovation project through to the delivery of on-pack artwork on our finished products, which is inefficient, and with no single System of Record it has the possibility of multiple failure points and rework. When we get this wrong it can lead to incidents, fines, and loss of consumer trust. As an example, missing an allergen on our artwork will result in expensive recalls from our customers. 

Product Data is used by all functions in our company from R&D, Business Operations, Legal, Marketing and Customer Development across our Business Groups and Business Units. However, we do not have a fit for purpose overall process and interconnected systems that makes this easy for our Marketeers and our teams to operate effectively. 

Reaching our consumers digitally, across more touchpoints, requires a new integrated and efficient way to manage end-to-end product data with clear accountability across the entire product data journey.

 The aim of the Product Data Management Program is to address these challenges and provide: -

  • An Integrated andmore efficient process for the effective management of Product Data across Marketing, AWE, R&D, Supply Chain and E-Commerce​.

  • A technical capability, CARA (Content Authoring, Reuse and Assembly), that integrates and orchestrates Product Data across Product Data source systems (internal & external) so that data is “right first time” and can be used with confidence, thereby delivering greater effectiveness and efficiency in the end-to-end usage journey. 

The Product Data Management Programme has the following overarching outcomes: - 

  • Reduce marketing effort through the reuse and sharing of valuable data, reduce the effort to track and communicate changes

  • Reduce R&D effort through the integration of data and reduction of manual handling

  • Reduce effort for Artwork by reducing the number of rework cycles 

  • Avoid wasteful spend on 3rdparties, alternative technologies, incidents and fines

Reduce the effort for our operations teams to reach our consumers across multiple touchpoints

In order to deliver these outcomes, we need to drive the change in ways of working and adoption of the CARA tool to enable Product Data Management in each of the Business Units across all the Business Groups. 

Scope of the Role 

The role covers the following areas:–

  • Own the Strategy for the delivery of the PDM program as well as the design of Product Data GovernanceCapability

  • Build out the roll out plan of the existing capabilities in partnership with the Business Units and Business Groups

  • Plan out the sequence of the subsequent Release 3 and Release 4 in partnership with the R&D / Legal / Marketing functions

  • Lead the PDM SteerCo on behalf of the Business Sponsor and report back progress to periodically to senior stakeholders in the ULE

  • Setup the Data Governance of framework to drive Data Quality, Completeness and First Time Right Product Data

  • Build out the business case for the program for the subsequent year and have accountability for the benefits delivery

  • Manage the governance of the ITIB capex funding and report back to appropriate forums

  • Secure opex funding from the business groups for in year spends

  • Accountable for the overall spends of the Program

  • Track and Govern Business Case Benefits Delivery across beneficiaries

Responsibility for Functional Design andPDM Operations

  • Lead the team responsible for the functional design of the process and the associated technology solutionin partnership with cross functional team.

  • Anchor the Design Authority anddrive the bimonthly alignment sessions for cross functional design conversations

  • Oversee the PDM operations team that would be required to support the orchestration of cross functional data

  • Optimize / streamlineand standardize the process as much as possible to drive efficiencies and scale.

  • Evaluate the requests of customizations from the markets

  • Drive theTechnology Delivery team and Change Management

  • Oversight of the spendsfor technical delivery of the components of the program

  • Hold the technology team accountable for System performance / Quality of delivery / Uptime / Overall Resilience of the tool

  • Work with the UniOps in Markets team for designing and leading the Change Management for deployment into the individual Business Units

  • Ensure Service adherence for support teams

Essential Skills

  • Over 18 years of experience working in FMCG with over 5 years leading large digital transformationprograms

  • A good understanding on the collaboration of Business Units / R&D / Legal and Corporate Marketing in new product launches

  • Knowledgeable across process and cross functionaloperationsof the product value chain

  • Ability to partner with Finance to build out multiyear business cases and deliver financial benefits 

  • Working knowledge on holding technology delivery teams accountable on timelines, quality, and project delivery

  • Excellent communication, influencing, negotiating, mentoring & team building skills 

  • Excellent skills in persuading disparate audiences at senior levels in the organization and explaining complex ideas & recommendations to a wider audience

  • Understand the importance of data quality and data governance

Leadership Skills

Demonstrates strong "Inner game":

  • Personal drive and ability to inspire and engage others towards action

  • Personal mastery –emotionally resilient; always bringing the best of themselves

  • Agile – intellectually curious, constantly looking to develop, embraces change with sense of urgency and enjoys positively challenging status quo

Demonstrates great "Outer game":

  • Credible business acumen – shows understanding of business, finance and performance metrics.  Has ability to effectively influence senior stakeholder within a functional and technical context

  • Encourages experimentation, bringing the outside in, and intelligent risk taking

  • Brings the voice of the consumer and internal customer into everything they do

  • Passion for high performance – creating motivation and focus to drive execution at speed

  • A talent catalyst – encouraging collaboration and inclusivity, empowering teams to be their best

Internal interfaces

  • PDM Business Sponsor

  • Business Group Presidents

  • R&D Operations and Digital Teams

  • Marketing and Artwork Excellence

  • Business Unit Leaders

  • Procurement

  • MDM / Supply Chain

  • UniOps Tech Services teams and UniOpsin Market Teams

External Interfaces

  • BPO Partners

  • Print Management Agencies

  • Product Partners

  • SI Partners

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