Product & Purchasing Manager - Long Haul Touring
As a Group, Saga is taking to the seas in our brand new, luxury cruise ships, leading the market with innovative insurance products, and creating thousands of unforgettable memories for our loyal holidaymakers who are at the heart of the Saga brand.
This is an important leadership role that will help to drive change for the Product & Purchasing team, look at ways we can provide unique experiences for our customers. This is an exciting opportunity to be able to bring personality to the products and services you'll buy.
In this role, you will take full commercial ownership of your product portfolio. Responsibility for the product will extend through its entire life cycle, from development and rate negotiation, ensuring its operational effectiveness and commercial strength to optimising its presentation and promotion to the market.
You will have a strong travel industry background and bring contracting and negotiation experience, extensive product knowledge and an ability to work well with multiple parts of a business.
And in return, you can look forward to all of the responsibility and involvement of an integral role, providing you with a rewarding and fast paced career with an excellent benefits package including life assurance, pension, high street and online discounts, and concessions for holidays and travel.
- Develop new, innovative and commercially successful product aligned with Saga’s segmentation strategy that appeals to both our existing market and first-time-buyers
- Refine and reengineer existing products to optimise performance
- “Champion” your areas across the business, establishing yourself as the primary point of contact for anything related to your destinations
- Be fully aware of the UK travel marketplace, competitor activity and customer insights and accordingly identify and implement commercial opportunities
- Ensure that supplier contracts are negotiated at rates that position Saga product as highly competitive in the UK market
- Negotiate special offers, overrides, marketing funds and other commercial advantages
- Negotiate tourist board funding for destinations included in your remit
- Work closely with the Pricing & Yield teams to ensure that stock levels of flights/beds are acting appropriately to maximise sales
- Work closely with the Product Ops teams to ensure all product is operationally efficient, correctly contracted/loaded and customer service issues are dealt with effectively
- Achieve all production deadlines to ensure optimised speed to market
- Collaborate with the wider team and colleagues at Titan to negotiate strategically aligned DMC partnerships with superior commercial terms and service delivery
- Be constantly aware of the commercial performance of your product portfolio and take action to address any concerns or negative trends
- Ensure that all relevant areas of the business are fully briefed and trained on your product, and regular training takes place to update on new products
- Work closely with Marketing and Studio to ensure all promotional literature does full justice to the contracted product
- Ensure that all product meets Quality Guidelines and customer service delivery is monitored and maintained
- Represent Saga at the highest levels with supplier organisations, political bodies and trade contacts
- Ensure the timely and full completion of all relevant briefing forms, paperwork and contractual documentation
- Attend regular product development meetings to discuss new product ideas and innovation
- Work closely with the Aviation team to ensure Saga’s products have the best flight options at the most competitive rates
- Be proactive in mentoring and developing the relevant Product Ops Exec, ensuring they are fully briefed on all details pertaining to your product areas
The Ideal Candidate
Capability, Knowledge and Experience:
- Previous relevant purchasing experience within a travel environment
- Excellent Product and destination knowledge
- An established network of contacts across relevant DMCs, tourist boards and hoteliers
- Strong commercial and operational experience
- Some experience across the travel business would be preferred especially Sales and Marketing
- Excellent negotiation, persuasion & influencing skills
- Fluency in an additional language preferable
- Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
- High level of numerical and literacy skills
- Initiative, diplomacy, tact and sound judgement
- Ability to work on own initiative and remain calm under pressure
- Ability to follow through targets and objectives
- Flexibility to travel, sometimes for extended periods and sometimes at short notice
- Able to be a senior ambassador for the company
- Highly organised and disciplined
The standard benefits when you join Saga include:
- Option to purchase a further 5 days annual leave per year
- Free private medical insurance after 1 years service
- AXA Be Supported
- Apples Nursery (Folkestone only and on a waiting list basis)
- Free fruit
- Give as you earn
- Free eye tests
- Honeymoon benefit
- Salary finance
- Discounts on Saga holidays and insurance products
- A range of reductions and offers from leading retailers, travel groups and entertainment companies
- Long service awards
About the Company
When you join Saga you will see that we are committed to treating all employees fairly and to offering equal opportunities in all aspects of employment and advancement.
We value diversity not just because it is the right thing to do, but because diverse teams perform better. Creating a culture in which everyone feels welcome and offering equal opportunities in all aspects of employment and advancement is incredibly important to us. Fair consideration is given to applications from all applicants, including those with disabilities. If you need support at any point with your application please let us know as we will be happy to help.
Learn more about the Saga business by watching our Saga plc results for the financial year 2018/2019
To all recruitment agencies: Saga does not accept agency CVs unless specifically engaged on the role by the HR Recruitment Team. Please do not forward CVs to our recruiters, employees or any other company location. Saga is not responsible for any fees related to unsolicited CVs.