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Senior Manager - Functional Ingredients/Research Leader (Chicago - Relocation Considered)


Chicago, IL, US


A mutually rewarding experience.

Work. Realize your ambitions. And realize there’s more to being in business than just making a profit. That’s the Mars philosophy. And the opportunity we offer every one of our Associates. An opportunity to take what you do and make it mean more for you, for those around you and for the planet.  What you get here is challenging, interesting work. You get the tools you need to do a great job and you get to have the best possible people on your side to help you do it. And at the same time as getting to find ways to do business better today than we did it yesterday and driving a great career, you also get to build a more enlightened business and drive sustainability.

Because it’s never just about a single person, a single project or a single brand. It’s about how you can grab everything that’s within your reach here and use it to pursue mutual, long-term gain. It’s about having ideas. And ideals. Being prepared to risk failure because the promise of success means we’ll all be a little better off. It’s that mix of integrity and ambition that makes Mars such a special place to work. And why working here is always about more than just a job.

About Mars, Incorporated 

Mars is a family-owned business with more than a century of history making diverse products and offering services for people and the pets people love. With almost $35 billion in sales, the company is a global business that produces some of the world’s best-loved brands: M&M’s®, SNICKERS®, TWIX®, MILKY WAY®, DOVE®, PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, WHISKAS®, EXTRA®, ORBIT®, 5™, SKITTLES®, UNCLE BEN’S®, MARS DRINKS and COCOAVIA®. Mars also provides veterinary health services that include BANFIELD® Pet Hospitals, Blue Pearl®, VCA® and Pet Partners™. Headquartered in McLean, VA, Mars operates in more than 80 countries. The Mars Five Principles – Quality, Responsibility, Mutuality, Efficiency and Freedom – inspire its more than 100,000 Associates to create value for all its partners and deliver growth they are proud of every day.


Senior Manager - Functional Ingredients/Research Leader   


Passionate about leading people?  This position is responsible for leading people with multi-cultural awareness, and managing a portfolio of research projects and programs for the functional ingredients for Mars Wrigley business globally.  This position is key to the development of  new functional ingredients and capabilities to deliver our innovation platforms across the Mars Wrigley portfolio. The senior manager is expected to form strategy for mid and long-term technology development working with internal and external partners, utilizes the Technology Readiness Level stage gate system as guiding business process to enable prioritized, relevant and innovative solutions to key technical business challenges within the segment. 


What are we looking for?

  • Bachelors degree in scientific discipline required, Masters/PhD preferred
  • 10+ years of relevant Food, Pharmaceutical or CPG Industry experience (preferred)
  • Demonstrated leadership skills and abilities in leading and engaging scientists and technical teams against business deliverables and holds teams to highest quality research standards.
  • Experience in clinical research strategies, early stage claims development and knowledge of clinical research design, Nutrition is preferred
  • Travel as needed


What would your key responsibilities be?

  • Great People Management - Build, engage, and develop team and capabilities.
  • Ensure all team projects are driven against clear objectives, deliverables, milestones, and in accordance with Mars Science Operating System requirements including IP and communications strategy.
  • Develop long-term functional ingredients-based strategic vision in partnership with Commercial, Innovation and other stakeholders, ensuring this is based on sound technical knowledge and up to date, relevant business and consumer insights
  • Develop and implement research strategies for key functional ingredients against business strategy to protect and grow the business.
  • Develop functional programs (such as oral health, health & nutrition) and communications in support of business priorities.
  • Collaboratively working with cross functional internal and external partners to develop strong relationships with suppliers and universities.  
  • Partner with key stakeholders and innovation team to ensure effective development of claims, communications, and publication strategies especially programs requiring clinical studies
  • Ensure the team delivers the highest possible level of safety standards, Mars Quality Management Program compliance, and culture through individual training and actions, a focus on safety via project teams.
  • Lead the coordination with Scientific and Regulatory Affairs, legal and Innovation teams to review and approve wording for functional claims and communication.
  • Applies professional knowledge and experience in developing functional research concepts related to product needs, identifies problem areas, patentable opportunities, and competitive advantage and develops and implements research projects related to their resolution, building credibility in the functional space (i.e. Oral Health Science, Health and Nutrition).
  • Leads the development of mid to long-term functional ingredients-based strategic vision in partnership with Commercial, Innovation and other stakeholders, ensuring this is based on sound technical knowledge and up to date, relevant business insights
  • Ensures the progress of external studies through the team to ensure work is consistent with sound scientific principles and procedures, enable robust clinical test design, initiate and monitor clinical studies for adherence to Good Clinical Practices.   


What can you expect from Mars?

  • The opportunity to learn, develop and take charge of your own career.
  • An industry competitive salary and benefits package. 
  • To be respected and valued.
  • The Five Principles at the center of every decision
  • The opportunity to work cross functionally, add value and impact a better world for generations to come.





Mars is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. If you need assistance or an accommodation during the application process because of a disability, it is available upon request. The company is pleased to provide such assistance, and no applicant will be penalized as a result of such a request.


Nearest Major Market: Chicago

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