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Financial Controller – Leading Food Manufacturer

Executive Summary

This leading food manufacturer and marketing company needed a financial controller to oversee the accounting function of their China-based business. Having partnered with the business on a number of financial requirements over the past five years, Aston Carter was the obvious choice to support the business with this critical hire.

Client Profile

150 years in the making, this global manufacturer, and Fortune 500 company, produces and markets a wide variety of recognisable consumer food products worldwide. Their products are sold in more than 100 countries across six continents with nearly half of their 42,000 employees based outside of the US. Their business is streamlined into three core segments of US retail, international and convenience & foodservice.

Brief

Due to changes within their finance group a new Financial Controller was required to oversee their China-based accounting team.

As a partner to the business in China for the past five years, Aston Carter has built a close relationship with the business over our five year partnership by providing high quality talent solutions. With a successful track record and specialist recruiters focusing on corporate finance roles, Aston Carter was the obvious choice to support the business with this requirement.

Finding the right candidate for the role was essential to ensure the team operated effectively, as this individual would oversee an accounting team of 30 people. The selected candidate also required experience of the FMCG industry in China, a proven track record of accounting (both in-house and external firms) and a stable work history with proven leadership skills.

Solution

Aston Carter took a holistic approach and invested the time to understand the business’ current challenges and employee value proposition. This information was then utilised as part of the sourcing strategy to attract candidates who would be excited by the prospect of developing a solution to overcome the business challenges.

With a team of specialist financial consultants that focus specifically within the FMCG industry, Aston Carter prepared a detailed market map of the accounting teams within several major FMCG competitors. From this map targeted highly qualified candidates with the skills and experience to suit the needs to the business.

Aston Carter’s specialist finance knowledge and connections within the FMCG industry, combined with their strong understanding of the business’ needs and culture, allowed them to provide a shortlist of three highly qualified candidates within just three days of receiving the initial brief.

Result

All three candidates presented by Aston Carter were invited to attend panel interviews with the business stakeholders, demonstrating the high quality of the candidates sourced, and allowing the business the luxury of choice in their selection process. This also provided the business with the opportunity to gather some insight into their competitors within the local FMCG market.

With such a critical role, the business was committed to ensuring the selected candidate was the right fit both technically and culturally for their needs. This meant an extensive interview process with seven rounds of interviews involving ten different business stakeholders.

With such an extensive interview process, Aston Carter recognised the importance of maintaining a consistent dialogue between the candidates and the hiring manager, ensuring that feedback was shared after each interview stage to help gauge the candidates level of interest, identify areas for further analysis and to help maintain the selection process momentum.

By the end of the process the business had found a highly skilled candidate to meet their needs, who in spite of receiving multiple counter-offers, accepted and commenced in the role quickly taking lead of the accounting team.

Aston Carter continues to consult, collaborate and service the business’ hiring requirements, working together to maintain a true partnership where success is celebrated.

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