Have you ever wondered what goes into the role of Drinks Category Manager at Beacon? Well, now is your chance. As featured in an upcoming issue of Hotel Business Magazine, today we explore Kelley Walker's role and how she impacts the success of the Beacon business.
A major focus in my role is to maintain an overall view of the drinks category landscape so that I can be prepared to react to commercial opportunities that arise and work to capitalise on them. I start my day reviewing our reports and identifying areas of growth for both customers and suppliers. I will also monitor current or emerging trends and look for ways in which we can implement these, working with Beacon suppliers to the benefit of our customers and clients.
I work closely with key contacts at each of our expert drinks suppliers and meet with them frequently. Today for example I am meeting with one of our leading drinks suppliers, Matthew Clark. Before the meeting I will look at all live opportunities within our systems and review ways in which we can work with Matthew Clark to deliver great commercial deals for our customers.
11am – 1pm
A supplier meeting will generally last for two to three hours, during which time we discuss a range of topics from marketing and strategy, to new business developments and focuses for both businesses. As you would expect from a Buyer, naturally a large focus for these meetings is financials and pricing. I will take time to look through reports with the supplier and identify any pricing changes, or intended changes, working jointly in order to alleviate rises where possible.
In all supplier meetings I factor in time to discuss industry trends, so we can effectively report on what customers are ordering and how they are behaving, allowing us to use this information to benefit our entire customer base.
After lunch I will attend the Beacon sales team meeting, with our team of regional Scottish based Account Managers, where I present on all aspects of the drinks category; what is up, what is down and topics that need to be on everyones’ radar. During this time I will also speak to the team to identify any customer service issues or opportunities for Beacon, our suppliers and our customers.
One of the last meetings of my day will be with a customer, which I will attend with a member of the Scottish regional team. I take time before the meeting to pull together a month of invoices and quotes from our drinks suppliers, in order to effectively illustrate the savings we have been able to provide through Beacon. In a recent meeting with one of our customers in London, we were able to demonstrate a 9% saving to the customer. Without paying meticulous attention to invoices and liaising closely with the customer, supplier and Beacon account manager, this type of reporting would not be possible.
As my day comes to a close, I will spend time cross-checking our CRM system against any outstanding opportunities that need following up. I will also prepare for any other meetings I have planned for the next week; looking at my diary I have a meeting with Matthew Algie tomorrow and then meetings with Heineken, Carlsberg and Molson Coors later this week!
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