Délifrance (UK) Ltd: Careers case study

Natalie Parker, Technical Account Manager: "It's a great job and I'm always learning!"

Qualification: BSc (Hons) Food & Nutrition - Sheffield Hallam University

Q: What does an average day involve?

A: Every day is different! As a Technical Account Manager my team deals with the day-to-day requirements of our customers throughout the UK & Europe. This involves travelling between the different sites and customers for visits, audits, quality panels and new product development work amongst other things.

Q: What was your career path to your job?

A: I started with Délifrance as a Technical Services Assistant within a week of finishing my degree. This role involved answering general technical enquiries and specification work. I was later promoted to Assistant Technical Services Manager which increased my direct contact with customers. Following a large group acquisition, I was made a Technical Account Manager responsible for several high profile accounts.

Q: What is the best thing about your job?

A: The variety of customers and production sites that I am involved with. I enjoy the interaction with customers and nothing makes me prouder than seeing a product I've worked on launched and on supermarket shelves.

Q: What advice would you give to someone thinking of pursuing this career?

A: There is more to the food industry than meets the eye. When I started my degree I didn't know which direction in the food industry I wanted to take. After studying for a few years, and a year working on an industrial placement, I decided that technical was 'my thing'. I would advise students not to specialise too early in your course - I chose a food general course which gave me options to specialise in the final years.

Q: Where do you see yourself in five years time?

A: Definitely still working within the food industry in a technical role. I love it! It's a great job and I am always learning every day.

Q: What is your favourite meal?

A: By far the hardest question...dinner at the only 3* Michelin restaurant in Rome, or any meal that contains peas.


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Last reviewed: 15 Mar 2011