Product Technologist (General Merchandise) [Hardlines]
Full-time, Up to £35,000 per annum

Ref: 10056

Salary: Up to £35,000 per annum

Hours: Full-time

Contracted Hours: 39

Contract Type: Permanent

Location: Chester House, Epsom Ave, Handforth, Cheadle, Greater Manchester, SK9 3DF


Product Technologist – General Merchandise (Hardlines)

This is a fantastic opportunity to come and work for a company voted 5th in the Great Place to Work (Best Large Workplaces) awards 2018, and Number 15 in Europe in 2017! We have over 450 stores and over 310 Groom Rooms and are the UK's number one pet care business. Our business is fast-paced, innovative and fun and it's our people that make the difference.

PAH is driven by a culture of pets before profit, with passion and innovative delivery of diverse product ranges to pet owners across the spectrum. 

If you love making things happen, driving change and helping to shape the right processes and procedures to take this business to the next level - then this is the role for you! 

Based at our Support Office in Handforth, Cheshire, PAH is seeking a bright and capable Product Technologist to help develop our amazing range of Accessories products from concept to delivery. Our technical team ensures we provide our customers and their pets with products that are safe and legal across both Food & Non-Food, whilst ensuring all product claims and labelling are accurate and not misleading.


Reporting directly to the Technical Manager - Non-Food, this diverse role will empower you to drive delivery of the technical strategy and provide support to the trading, packaging and innovations’ teams within a fast paced environment. Focussing on our general merchandise product areas, we are looking for a highly motivated individual who is a strong team player with a ‘can do’ attitude to successfully drive change. 

  • Deliver projects relating to non-food product integrity, ensuring all quality related timeframes are achieved from concept to launch.
  • Assess products and communicate requirements in terms of suitability and construction, whilst providing guidance and technical support to the teams. Follow newly defined product approval processes and initiatives, and contribute to the development of Generic Specifications.
  • Build and maintain technical files, reporting & developing product improvements, managing specifications and reviewing artwork for technical detail.
  • Manage the daily development of specific categories (hardlines) with the support of the Technical Manager and the Far East team, ensuring legal compliance and achieving required quality standards.
  • Manage, coordinate and update specification libraries, including reviewing, maintaining and timely completion of technical aspects of finished product specifications.
  • Support team and line manager in co-ordinating approval of suppliers, factories and products, contributing to all relevant technical files and documentation as required.
  • Flexible and able to manage your own workload in line with changing priorities.
  • Work in collaboration with our Hong Kong office and direct source supply base to deliver product appraisals at sample seal stages, producing and maintaining accurate records to achieve required quality standards.
  • Support all aspects of product development and innovation process, delivering ‘right first time’ approach and continuous improvement.
  • Participate and contribute as a member of a cross functional project team making appropriate recommendations to drive improvements. Collaborate and work closely with Buyers and Category Managers, to support own brand product development. 
  • Liaise with test houses, co-ordinate testing needs, assess and keep technical files and reports, and manage approved production samples prior to shipment as required.
  • Travel as required to stores, DCs, and suppliers, or to support wider business needs.
  • Liaise and communicate with suppliers and Customer Services, investigating customer complaints as required, making recommendations and taking remedial action where necessary.
  • Provide support as required in relation to legal, environmental, ethical and safety standards. 
  • Ensure the technical process, files, documentation and storage/recording of sealing samples is consistently maintained.
  • Liaise with our supply base in the UK & overseas, and with our Regional Office colleagues, building strong collaborative relationships and supportive actions.
  • Compile and analyse supplier & site performance data, communicating with team, and delivering updates to key stakeholders across the business as required.
  • Co-ordinate and appraise supplier audits against defined standards, reviewing performance and assisting in creating corrective action plans and maintaining records. Adopt and promote the use of the Supplier Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) so that supplier performance can be monitored consistently.
  • Support the Technical Manager – Non-Food in collating and analysing data, delivering new ideas and recommendations to drive continued improvements.
  • Liaise with stores and retail operations to support the business in all aspects of incident management, product withdrawal, or recall procedures with appropriate follow-up as required. 

Skills Required

The successful candidate would ideally have previous experience of working as a Product Technologist across multi product categories within a ‘hard goods’ environment gained within a retail, manufacturing, test laboratory or supplier based environment. Holding a Product Technology or Engineering degree/certificate or related qualification would be an advantage. 

  • Ability to communicate clearly and influence people, both internally and externally.
  • Supportive team player, adaptable to changing priorities, willing to challenge and suggest new ideas.
  • Experience of managing product quality from concept to launch through the NPD process, including assessment of supplier capability.
  • Knowledge of retail and manufacturing processes, including supplier auditing and quality management is desirable but not essential.
  • Understanding of legal and regulatory requirements and application to general merchandise is essential.
  • Willingness to ‘go the extra mile’ and show determination to support business objectives.
  • A working knowledge of risk assessment, consumer products, toys, furniture, hard goods construction, glassware and home textile products experience would be an advantage. 
  • Ability to demonstrate logical, analytical, methodical thought process and organisational skills is important.
  • Desire to drive technical standards and culture of improvement – constantly striving to make a difference – building our Generic Specifications and minimum standards.
  • Have an understanding of QA and control processes and procedures, experience of QMS systems would be an advantage. 
  • Adaptable to changing priorities, with good ‘excel’ programming and computer skills a necessity.
  • Confident and able to work under your own initiative as well as being a strong team player.
  • We’re a Pet business so having a passion for pets is a must! 

The Benefits:

  • Salary up to £35,000 per annum, plus bonus
  • 36 days paid annual leave (including bank holidays)
  • Birthday Leave - 1 day extra leave to celebrate your Birthday!
  • The option to buy extra holidays
  • An extra days holiday when you become a new pet parent (Dog/Cat/Horse)
  • Pension Scheme
  • Colleague Discount- 20% discount for you (plus one family member). This can be used in Pets at Home Stores, Groom Rooms, Companion Care Veterinary Services, and Pet Plan Insurance! 
  • “Treats” benefits- an online range of offers and discounts which are available exclusively to Pets at Home Colleagues
  • Life assurance
  • Contributory Private Health Care
  • Charity Leave- You are entitled to have one paid day’s leave each year to work for your favourite animal related charity.
  • Celebrating Special Celebrations? You’ll get 1 extra week off and a gift to celebrate your wedding or civil partnership, and a gift from us if you are expecting or adopting a baby!
  • Free Car Parking
  • Free Gym
  • Colleague of the Month Awards
  • Cycle to Work Scheme

*If you haven't heard back from us within 2 weeks, please assume that unfortunately on this occasion your application has been unsuccessful*

Organisation: Pets at Home

Date Posted: 06-06-2019

Expiry Date: 31-01-2020