Kinsa Group Blog

Want Faster, More Successful Hires? Then make sure you do this ONE critical thing!

September 1st, 2014

Does your organization want to hire exceptional professionals more quickly and effectively?

What a silly question. Of course you do.

With decades of executive food & beverage recruiting experience, we at Kinsa are experts at helping employers like you achieve long-term hiring success. Over the years, we’ve learned that factors like targeted recruiting, consistent interviewing, comprehensive assessments and thorough background checks are all essential to making great hires. The one critical thing we find that many employers overlook when hiring, however, is deceptively simple:

Treat EVERY candidate well.

red carpetNot just your top prospects, but every candidate who applies with your organization.

In today’s employment, candidates are in the driver’s seat – and social media has made them more vocal than ever. If your hiring process is lengthy, or if candidates feel slighted or wronged, they may take to sites like Glassdoor, Indeed or LinkedIn to vent – and compromise your employer brand in the process.

The following tips will help you improve long-term hiring success by leaving a good impression with every applicant, so you generate more high-quality referrals and protect your brand:

Provide timely, accurate feedback.

  • Give interviewees the information they need. Be prepared to answer questions at the conclusion of, and after, the interview. Keep your candidates informed about your hiring process, timeline and next steps, so they know what to expect and don’t feel “hung out to dry.”
  • Provide detailed feedback to your recruiter. If you’re working with Kinsa, let us know how each interview went as soon afterward as possible. Our recruiters use your information to expedite the hiring process and ensure you don’t lose a top candidate to a competitor. If the individual is not a good fit, be candid and explain why. Honest communication helps us do an even better job of exceeding your expectations as our relationship moves forward.
  • Respond to every candidate who contacts you regarding the status of his job application. “Never hearing back” is a common frustration for job seekers, which may prompt them to complain online. If you don’t have time to craft personalized messages, create a library of standard rejection and continuation letters to streamline the process.

Take good care of your second- and third-choice candidates.

Maintain communication with “runners up.” Keep them informed of the job’s status and clearly explain when and how they will receive follow-up from your organization. If you don’t wind up hiring your first choice, you will have other viable candidates primed for renewed consideration. And if you don’t wind up hiring second- and third-choice candidates, you will at least have left them with a favorable impression of your organization.

Taking proper care of every candidate takes significant time and effort; but it’s an essential component of successful hiring. As a leading national food & beverage recruiter, Kinsa is here to help you by:

  • Identifying the best candidates, using proven sourcing, interviewing and assessment techniques.
  • Actively marketing your opportunity and assisting with offer negotiations to help you land your first choice.
  • Expediting the hiring process through mutual timely communication, to prevent candidate drop-out.
  • Alleviating the administrative burdens associated with hiring to help you stay focused.
  • Following up with every candidate professionally and in a timely manner, to protect your employer brand.

Have an upcoming food & beverage hiring need? Trust Kinsa to deliver the high performers you need.

Kinsa Group – Hot Jobs – Shift Supervisor – Wisconsin

August 26th, 2014

HOT JOBS are the open food and beverage jobs that Kinsa Group’s recruiters are actively seeking qualified candidates to interview right now!  You may be the ideal candidate, so apply TODAY!

Shift Supervisor – Wisconsin

Premier contract food manufacturer for global leaders in dairy, dry powder, sports nutrition and weight loss industries.  Privately held business driven by an entrepreneurial focus.


3rd Shift Supervisor


Newly created position due to company growth!  


This role reports directly to our Operations Manager, and is responsible for supervising the day-to-day operations on the night shift. Duties will include overseeing all aspects of 3rd shift production including food safety requirements, production goals, employee relations, and customer specific requirements.


The ideal candidate for this position will have a solid background supervising within the food industry, and be comfortable working in a fast paced high volume production environment. They should also have the ability to positively impact the forward direction of our team with a daily focus on food safety, procedural execution, and competitive spirit. In addition, we are looking for a positive communicator, who knows how to work with people, set clear objectives and provide follow-up and coaching as needed.

Background Profile:

  • Minimum of 3-5 years experience supervising in a high paced manufacturing environment.

  • Previous work experience within the food industry – dairy or dry powder experience preferred.

  • Good interpersonal skills and a positive attitude working with others to build teamwork throughout our operations.

  • Background in Food Safety — HACCP, SQF, BRC etc.. — Food safety certifications are a definite plus.

For more information on this hot job please contact Joe Sommerfeldt at

Kinsa Group – Top Talent – Principal Scientist – Ingredients

August 21st, 2014

Top Talent is Kinsa Group’s listing of currently available food and beverage industry professionals that you as an employer may interview and hire at a reduced fee.  The following food and beverage industry professionals are experienced, motivated and ready to perform for your organization.

Principal Scientist – Ingredients

Featuring a talented Principal Scientist:

- Food Science Master’s Degree graduate, leader of product development innovation teams for Fortune 500 manufacturers of bakery, seasoning, and frozen food products.

- Organized and led global product development summit resulting in adoption of eight new food products across global platform.

- Eager to return to proactive product development in a Principal Scientist or Director of R&D role. House currently on the market and open to relocation across the US!

Contact me to schedule an interview with this candidate or learn about other talent that may match your current needs.

For more information on this top candidate please contact Russ Lilly at

Kinsa Group – Top Talent – Quality / Production Manager – Dairy

August 14th, 2014

Top Talent is Kinsa Group’s listing of currently available food and beverage industry professionals that you as an employer may interview and hire at a reduced fee.  The following food and beverage industry professionals are experienced, motivated and ready to perform for your organization.

Quality / Production Manager – Dairy

Quality and Technical Services Leader/Manager with Bachelors in Dairy Science, minor in Food, Culinary and Nutritional Sciences. 12 years of dairy industry experience to include 10 years in ice cream, frozen novelties, fluid milk, beverage, sour cream and cottage cheese. Previous employment with Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream / Nestle working within the Quality Systems department.

Successfully achieved cost saving initiatives resulting in 27% reduction of CIP times and significant savings in labor. Responsible for leading consumer complaint reduction teams at each facility, which has led to decreases in complaints.

Personable leader with proven performance in Quality systems throughout industry leading facilities. Looking to share my knowledge of management, food safety, auditing and sanitation in a manner consistent with company goals with my future employer.


For more information on this top candidate please contact Nancy Furgason at

Kinsa Group – Hot Jobs – Control Engineer – Continuous Improvement

August 12th, 2014

HOT JOBS are the open food and beverage jobs that Kinsa Group’s recruiters are actively seeking qualified candidates to interview right now!  You may be the ideal candidate, so apply TODAY!

Control Engineer – Continuous Improvement – Dairy – Wisconsin

Rapidly growing, family oriented food & beverage manufacturer located on the north side of Milwaukee’s looking to add an Engineering Project Manager to their team!


Your Role and Responsibilities:

·         Lead technical liaison between company and suppliers

·         Identify and complete corrective actions

·         Mechanical and electrical safety

·         Define and deliver cost saving initiatives


Background Qualities/Experience

·         Associate’s degree – Engineering field

·         5+ years of Food, Beverage, Semiconductor or Pharmaceutical experience

·         PLC and Robotic working knowledge

For more information on this hot job please contact Mary Chambers at


Optimize Your Supply Chain / Logistics Resume

August 11th, 2014

logisticsWant to know exactly what a recruiter wants to see on your food & beverage Supply Chain or Logistics resume?

We have the information you need.

Today, Kinsa continues our series of resume optimization posts, each dedicated to a specific professional job category within the food & beverage industry.

Last quarter, our recruiters shared what they and their clients look for in Food & Beverage Quality and Food Safety resumes. Below, they detail best practices for strengthening your Supply Chain or Logistics resume – so recruiters take notice:

From Karen Engelmann – Account Manager:

  • Quantified accomplishments. Not surprisingly, the best resumes include information on cost savings and efficiencies gained. Whenever possible, include hard numbers to support your achievements.
  • Employees managed. Include information on the size of your staff.
  • Transportation and forecasting experience. When applicable, outline the types of transportation for which you were responsible (e.g., domestic, import/export, TL, LTL), as well as the types of planning/forecasting experience you have.

From Emily Mullen – Executive Recruiter:

Purchasing specifics. When addressing your purchasing experience, the details matter. Recruiters want to know:

  • the annual spend for which you were responsible
  • any cost savings you implemented
  • everything (products) you were responsible for purchasing

From Robert Navarro – Account Manager:

  • Specific, relevant experience. Include the experience you have that pertains to sourcing of materials, purchasing, production planning, inventory management, warehousing and distribution.
  • Contract negotiation skills. Detail the type of experience you have with contract negotiation.
  • Software experience. Explain the types of ERP [Enterprise Resource Planning] and transportation-specific software systems with which you’ve worked.

From Laurie Hyllberg – Vice President:

Certifications. If you work in Supply Chain and have an APICS (American Production and Inventory Control Society) certification, or are a Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.), feature them in your resume. These are the most globally recognized designations for supply management professionals and need to be noted.

Looking for more executive food & beverage resume advice?

Check out these earlier posts from Kinsa:

Kinsa Group – Top Talent – Marketing Manager – Dairy

August 7th, 2014

Top Talent is Kinsa Group’s listing of currently available food and beverage industry professionals that you as an employer may interview and hire at a reduced fee.  The following food and beverage industry professionals are experienced, motivated and ready to perform for your organization.

Marketing Manager – Dairy 

Featuring a Senior Marketing Professional:

- Young up-and-comer with over 3 years of experience in the dairy industry, as well as several years of experience developing marketing campaigns for broadcasting, philanthropic organizations, and financial services firms. BS in Communications.

- Managed integration, marketing campaigns, and product changes throughout implementation of new marketing programs; efforts resulted in nearly $2 million in additional revenue last year.

- Offering B2B and B2C marketing services to food manufacturers throughout the west and southwest.


For more information on this top candidate please contact Laurie Hyllberg at

Kinsa Group – Hot Jobs – Corporate Training Manager – Hospitality/Food/Retail

August 5th, 2014

HOT JOBS are the open food and beverage jobs that Kinsa Group’s recruiters are actively seeking qualified candidates to interview right now!  You may be the ideal candidate, so apply TODAY!

Corporate Training Manager – Hospitality/Food/Retail – Minnesota

Our client is a leader in their category in the US, providing a food service experience to their customers. With aspirations to be a place in the community loved by guests and known for providing an extraordinary experience that makes their customer’s day better, this current search for a Corporate Training Development Manager is critical.  It’s about having the best trained team members.

Our client is looking for a Training Manager who will design and create training materials for their corporate and field locations including each business channel–retail, food service, corporate, and operations.

Key responsibilities include:

  • Create, write, and design innovative training solutions for all initiatives, including various multi-media delivery methods. Define & manage training project time lines.

  • Partner with cross-functional teams to design and develop training roll-out plans and manage the program delivery of new products and training programs.

  • Identify training and development needs through gap analysis and make recommendations aligned with strategic objectives.

  • Measure and analyze outcomes of training initiatives, create plans to ensure training is sustained post-launch and create plans for continuous improvement.

Desired Background Profile:

  • 5+ years of training and development experience required.

  • Ability to create comprehensive and cohesive training materials.

  • Ability to present content in a variety of delivery formats to diverse audiences with a variety of leadership / learning skills.

  • Available for up to 10 % travel.

  • Experience in retail/hospitality industry preferred.

Kinsa offers a referral bonus should a colleague, business contact or friend that you refer get hired for this position.


There’s an ideal out there!

For more information on this hot job, please contact Laurie Hyllberg at

Kinsa Group – Top Talent – Plant Manager – Pet Food

July 31st, 2014

Top Talent is Kinsa Group’s listing of currently available food and beverage industry professionals that you as an employer may interview and hire at a reduced fee.  The following food and beverage industry professionals are experienced, motivated and ready to perform for your organization.

Plant Manager – Pet Food

Featuring a talented PLANT MANAGER candidate with a Masters of Management, Bachelor of Science in Business Management, Six Sigma Black Belt Certification, and HACCP Certification.

- 10+ years of manufacturing management experience in bakery, USDA meat, cookie and cracker, and pet food manufacturing. Additional 8+ years of military leadership and engineering experience in the United States Marine Corps.

-  Complete turnaround of current plant P&L from $2.3 Million loss per month to profitability in 9 months, achieved initial plant BRC certification with score of “A,” reduced conversion cost per unit by 77% in the first year, reduced variable labor headcount 35% and variable labor cost by 48%, increased daily production units by over 400% in 8 months, increased all critical Key Performance Indicators to world class levels (LTA’s, Recordables, FTQ, Consumer Complaints, Efficiency, and Waste)

-  Potential hiring organizations can expect superior leadership and mentoring, strategic direction setting and execution, measurable improvement of all business critical KPI’s, significant process improvement methodology implementation (Six Sigma, TPM, and Lean), and focus on implementation and/or sustainability of world class quality system(s) (ISO, BRC, SQF, etc).

For more information on this top candidate please contact Mary Chambers at

The Best Interview Advice You Ever Received: 4 Must-Read Ideas

July 28th, 2014

job interview smileConduct a quick Google search for “interview advice” and you’ll get hundreds of millions of hits (we know – we’ve done it!).

What food & beverage executive has time for that?!?

Don’t worry; you won’t need to clear your schedule to find the sound advice you need. We’ve done the leg work for you.

Today, Kinsa presents our best interview tips, specifically tailored to your executive food & beverage job search:

1. Prepare for an Online Interview

More and more, food & beverage organizations are using real-time technology to screen candidates and conduct initial interviews virtually. Use these tips to correctly set-up for and shine in your online interview:

  • Preparation is essential. Make sure you: download required software; test your webcam, microphone and lighting; choose an appropriate setting; and plan your wardrobe.
  • Change your computer settings. Adjust your screensaver and automatic hibernation settings. Close open programs, browser windows, instant messaging and scheduled scans so that your computer doesn’t lag.
  • Practice using the webcam. Unless you’re a broadcast journalist, you’re probably not used to looking directly into a camera. Eye contact is important, so practice via Skype with a friend to get used to looking into the lens and accommodating audio delays.

2. Conquer the Dreaded Panel Interview

Fielding questions from not one, but an entire team of interviewers is enough to put even the most stalwart candidate’s stomach in knots. Instead of letting anxiety consume you, develop a sound strategy for acing a food & beverage panel interview:

  • Do your homework. Make sure you understand the employer’s entire organization – not just your chosen specialty. If you know who will be interviewing you ahead of time, research those individuals so you understand their areas of expertise.
  • Accept questions one at a time. If an interviewer asks a follow-up question while you’re still answering the previous one, realize that this may be a stress test. Maintain your composure and incorporate the response to the follow-up question into your original answer. Once you’ve finished, ask both parties if you have addressed their concerns.
  • Expect at least one zinger. In a group setting, interviewers typically feel emboldened and may push the envelope more with their questions.  Develop an arsenal of three or four success stories you can rely on to answer a range of behavior-based questions.

3. Handle Difficult Phone Interview Questions with Ease

During a phone interview, you have just a few minutes to convince an interviewer that you’re worthy of a face-to-face meeting. Make sure you do everything possible to create a great first impression:

  • Keep your answers concise (less than two minutes). If a recruiter wants more information, he can ask for clarification.
  • Speak clearly and slowly. When you are nervous, you are more likely to speed up your rate of speech. Before you answer each question, take a moment to gather your thoughts. Slow your pace just a bit so you don’t trip over your words.
  • Convey your enthusiasm for the job. During the phone screening, state directly that you are looking forward to the opportunity to come in for an in-person interview.

 4. Adopt a “Less is More” Philosophy

In an interview situation, active listening is much more than just waiting for your turn to talk. It involves not only hearing the words that are said, but also fully comprehending what the interviewer is asking you to do. Use these tips to enhance your listening skills and perform better in your next interview:

  • Listen with your ears, eyes and brain. Communication experts say that only a fraction of the meaning of any conversation is in the actual words that are being said. To understand the interviewer’s true meaning, you must glean other nonverbal cues from his tone of voice, posture and facial expressions.
  • Confirm understanding. If the interviewer asks a complex or multi-part question, paraphrase what he’s asked to confirm your understanding before beginning your response. This will help ensure your response is both complete and accurate.
  • Answer the question that you’re asked. Pay attention to the nuances of the entire question, so that you accurately answer what’s asked. Avoid rambling answers that stray too far from the question posed. If the interviewer wants to know more about something, he will ask you to elaborate.

Ready to take the next step in your food & beverage career? Contact Kinsa’s experienced, specialized recruiters.

Copyright © 2009 by Kinsa Group. All rights reserved.