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Inventory Control and Procurement Manager

Company Overview

Dandelion Chocolate

Dandelion Chocolate Website
Dandelion Chocolate is a bean-to-bar chocolate factory in San Francisco’s Mission District. We make chocolate from only two ingredients, cocoa beans and cane sugar, and travel to origins as often as we can to build good, trusting relationships with the producers who grow and ferment the beans we buy. The journey a bean takes to become a bar (or experience, gift, or hot chocolate) involves careful planning and tracking that is almost inevitably accompanied by surprises: containers fall off of ships, bar paper arrives in the wrong color, a surprise monsoon delays a new machine from Japan, or ribbon set aside for the holidays was accidentally packed into one of four pallets headed to offsite storage. Our small but mighty team looks to our Inventory Control Manager to ensure our teams, shelves, and spaces are safe, stocked, organized, and ready to make world-class chocolate, host tours and classes, and warmly welcome guests each day.

About the Role
You are at the hub of all business operations – production, receiving, retail, facilities, and our online store with oversight of finished goods, internal supplies – ensuring we don’t sell what we don’t have, we continuously sell what we have, and we don’t say an item is out of stock when it is readily available. You work across multiple systems (SKULabs, Square, Shopify, ShipStation, remote warehouse inventory systems, lot tracking, etc) to provide a snapshot of our daily ATP (available-to-promise) with reliable numbers that drive our financials. You partner routinely with our Warehouse Operations team on ensuring fulfillment happens smoothly, optimizing onsite and offsite storage locations, planning inventory moves to our Las Vegas and Tokyo locations, and working closely with the Inventory Planning Analyst to review the sales plan for a key upcoming holiday gift item so that we are optimizing channel allocation.

A Day in the Life
Your day begins early with the usual morning activities: straightening out an inventory snafu with the packaging team, jumping on a call with the logistics manager to get clarity on the timing for the delivery of hot chocolate vials from Japan, and checking in with the Warehouse Manager on next week’s product delivery from our offsite storage facility. With the inventory and upcoming logistics squared away, you meet with the team to discuss space planning needs and delivery schedules for the upcoming holiday season. Since we do the majority of our business in the last few weeks of the year, you understand the importance of being strategic and pre-planning for the peak season. After lunch, you review the retail store and online inventory for the new seasonal bonbons to ensure we have optimized out channel allocation given the strong demand we are seeing. You wrap up the day meeting with the Fulfillment team to make sure their day went smoothly, double-checking that everyone is in the loop for tomorrow’s deliveries and product launch.

Job Categories

  • Hours: Full-time
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  • Industry: Food and Beverage
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Job Duties

- Daily warehouse operations: Regularly check in with vendors, chocolate makers, retail staff, product managers, product makers, program managers, and other team members to ensure that the cafés supplies are ordered well in advance of the Q4 holidays, the facilities team knows where to find necessary filters and hand soap, and that the warehouse is stocked but not overstocked with forgotten supplies or goods likely to become expired before being put to use. Set the daily schedule with the team based upon expected deliveries, vendor visits, product launches, and company events. Maintain a safe, clean, well-maintained workspace for the team and goods. Use proper safety protocols and assistance tools to lift more than 50 lbs or use a forklift.
- Inventory and counting: Maintain and purchase our supply inventory (e.g. paper bags for the retail stores, rubber gloves, paper cups for the cafés) and determine space needs to make items easy to retrieve. Help mitigate impact from late deliveries, vendor delays, quality issues, and incorrect deliveries. Ensure that we are not carrying inventory for items that are no longer needed (i.e. tablecloths from a class that is no longer available, retail signs for a product no longer in stock, a mislabeled box of caramels from a collaborator).
- Analytics and reporting: Determine par levels, set stock notifications, examine the previous season’s reports to guide inventory decisions, strategize how much to have onhand based upon vendor minimum or quantity and case sizes so that teams maintain their individual SLAs and financial goals without worrying about supply chain or inventory concerns. Send regular reports to the management and finance team with key metrics and inventory reports to answer what, where, and how much we have of any item as well as the associated administrative costs for receiving and handling items. As prudent, automate ordering and reports to allow time for proactive activities and to anticipate future scaling.
- Forecasting and planning: The winter season brings lots of high-demand, with potentially 50-60% of our revenue being realized in a few December weeks. Throughout the year, work to set a strategy for having the volume and variety of supplies on hand during peak seasons. Thanks to the spreadsheet you built, you know exactly when to order our snowflake pattern cups with plenty of lead time.
- Internal tools: Evaluate and implement new tools as necessary to automate ordering, counting, and reports so that our team members’ time is being used efficiently and maximizes their talents.
- Vendor Relationships: We have an extensive network of vendors for all of our various supplies. Work to negotiate procurement agreements with key vendors to maximize price and quality.
- Oversee team: Manage Delivery Drivers and Warehouse Associates. When necessary for the future business, hire, mentor, and grow a team of Inventory Associates, balancing workloads, developing individual growth plans, providing regular performance evaluations, setting goals and metrics, and providing ongoing feedback to reach quarterly team objectives.
- Other tasks as necessary

Job Requirements

- Inventory Chops: Your prior years of experience mean you have frameworks, experience, and out-of-the-box solutions to draw from when necessary (bonus if you have managed inventory in the food industry).
- Team Management: You’ve had experience coaching team members, setting daily routines, and tracking to company-wide goals. From your references, we learn that your previous team members, peers, and managers would want to work with you again (and again and again).
- Team player: you’ll be working with multiple teams and personalities in a professional environment where you will prioritize projects on the fly and let teams know when their projects aren’t the highest priority. Previous experience in a friendly professional environment or in another team-oriented setting will serve you well.
- Proven Vendor Relationship Skills: Our business partners look forward to working with you again (and again and again). You’ve maintained strong, multi-year vendor relationships including suppliers, delivery services, and repair workers over many years while also negotiating rates and handling missed expectations.
- Tech Skills: Expertise with spreadsheets, reporting, and presentations including Google Suite. Previous technical know-how with the ability to research and pick up new tools like Shopify, PO and SKU systems, Square, and knowing how to research tools to look for new capabilities and functions that will help us scale. Tier 1 Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) experience is a plus.
- Authorized to work in the U.S.

Skills/Experience Preferred

About You
You love systems, organization, and lean in to reconciling uncertainty (e.g. when will the port open, how many cacao paperclips do we have from last year, why did our collaborator’s ingredient list change, how will we accommodate the unexpectedly large packaging delivery). When you don’t have the answers, you will pick up the phone, drive to the facility, or put together a spreadsheet to figure it out. You enjoy working with your hands and working in the warehouse as much as diving into a spreadsheet. Teamwork, camaraderie, and a little humor when nothing ever quite goes to plan will serve you well in an ever-changing environment like Dandelion.

- Spanish: While not a formal requirement, conversational Spanish skills are a plus.

Compensation

depending on experience, $70-80k

Benefits

The benefits and perks continue beyond a robust chocolate education. Dandelion Chocolate constantly invests in our people and culture. All team members receive heavily subsidized medical, vision, and dental benefits as well as the option to enroll in our 401k program. All team members receive paid vacation time, holiday pay, and paid sick time. In addition, our team members enjoy commuter benefits, FSAs, chocolate tasting opportunities, and a range of opportunities to grow and develop within the company.

Hours

Full-time

Resume Required

Yes

Cover letter Required

Yes

Other Application Requirements

Dandelion is invested in team members who take ownership over their role and are interested in contributing in a bigger way with us. You will stand out from the crowd if your resume is accompanied by a cover letter with a few sentences about the best warehouse environment you’ve worked in and why it worked so well. We look forward to hearing from you! In accordance with the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records for employment.
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