Full-Time Sourcing Manager
is a Logistics and Value Addition platform for African Food Factories, focusing on the palm kernel oil industry. This crop focus can, however, shift to other crops over time. Their solution is simple, they source, light-process and deliver raw materials needed by agricultural factories in Nigeria. On first glance, they are just a procurement and supply company. Yet, their stellar innovation is in leveraging their proprietary smart-processing technology. This technology helps increase the amount of addressable, quality material sourced directly from smallholding farming communities thus aiding these farmers in connecting to better-paying processing companies in the most convenient ways possible.
The dynamism of their solution is how they have come to outperform competitors who rely on traders. When you think about this “competition”, you can think Afex, Olam or Flour mills. However, Their difference from the pack is implemented by their “hybridization” of highly engaging farmer relationship management; proprietary hardware processing and strong logistics functions.
They are a company founded by a group of young American Nigerians who studied at MIT, Duke, and Yale with experience at elite global firms McKinsey, General Electric, Bain, and Facebook. The Firm is supported by Pres. Adesina of AfDB, Nigeria’s former Minister of Agriculture & funded by Y Combinator and Bill Gates’ investment firm BEV. They have raised a total of $1M seed round funding and processing Annual Revenue Run-rates of $500K. They have created 40+ jobs working with 1000+ smallholder farmers in Southern Nigeria
About the Role
The team at Releaf is seeking a Sourcing Manager to facilitate the buying of palm nuts from smallholder farmers and then sending them to refineries. To them, sourcing is being able to transfer ownership from the farmer to or Client’s warehouses. The core of your duty is to help source thousands of tonnes from tens of thousands of farmers in a way that’s scalable. They are looking for someone who’s not afraid to get their hands dirty. Someone who they classify as Rugged yet Analytical enough to take a problem without a defined solution and be expansive enough to solve it. You are a power broker charismatic enough to build relationships and compelling enough to Train & motivate a team of people to hit specific goals. You need to be excited about the potential of agriculture to do something meaningful for the country. The majority of your work would be spent liaising with the farmers in the field and managing the relationships with them. This role is domiciled in Akwa-Ibom so you may consider this an opportunity to see another part of the country.
If Hired, What Do you need to do to be considered successful?
– Lead the hiring and management of multiple aggregation centres
– Open and manage centers, shopkeepers and expansion leads in Akwa Ibom, Cross Rivers and Rivers States
2. Impact Sourcing Volume: Consistent weekly sourcing directly from farmers. September 2020: Ramp up to 200T/week consistently
3. Build scalable models: 100% transparency in weighing and payment of palm kernel and data traceability.
How important are you to the Bottom Line?
1. The more you sustainably source the more the company makes. The cheaper you source the more profit they make.
2. If you hit the desired metrics under 8-12 months, they will be on course for regional expansion.
The Biggest Problem-Solving Duties on the Job
1. Dealing with several farmers all of a sudden. Because you are dealing with so many people some of who replace products with rocks, you have to be able to build and nurture their loyalty. You must be able to effectively manage community relations. You must ensure that farmers accept you and you in return keep them happy. You will need to build a community management system that scales. At the core, this system must ensure they follow your methods. You will need to train them on desired measurements because some like weight and others volume. In essence, they must be properly kept happy and informed.
2. You will be tasked with building a transparent and traceable system that; ensures Releaf doesn’t lose money; traces payments and solve their rural payment problems.
3. You will design a process that solves Logistics from Point of sales to processing Centers or warehouses.
4. You must be able to build processes that can be replicated across geographies or another desired crop type.
Skills and Experience
1. You have to be Incredibly good at building teams, leveraging strong communication in motivating people to hit metrics.
2. You must have experience sourcing targets and actively adapting strategy. You must be compelling and clearly communicative enough to seek buy-in from Directors if the current approach is not working and you have an alternative.
3. Experience building consensus in communities not by sitting in the office but by being very curious and going out in the field. To effectively do this, you must possess Deep, tangible experience sourcing agricultural raw materials directly annually from farmers, cooperatives, and communities (5+ years).
4. Experience in understanding incentives of many people and building systems that correspond to those incentives. If you want to change farmer behaviour you have to figure out what needs to make them tick.
5. Sourcing Expansion: First-hand experience leading the creation of new collection shops and making strong relationships with local communities.
6. Owner + 0:1 Creator: Constantly grow the capabilities of the sourcing department and team.
7. Skilled Strategist and Experimenter: Develop frameworks for sourcing experiments.
Analyze historical performance and improve strategy.
What Do You Stand To Gain
Opportunity to work closely with founders and key stakeholders.
Build a profitable sourcing process from the scratch.
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