Updating Results

Foodstuffs North Island

  • 1,000 - 50,000 employees

Adam Paterson

The best thing about my job is being able to turn insights into execution with real results.

What's your job about?

Foodstuffs North Island (FSNI) is a co-operative operating in the retail and wholesale grocery sectors of the North Island and my areas of responsibility are partnering with our Supply Chain team to provide commercial project support and turning financial insights into execution.

What are you exactly doing? 

  • Some parts of a Typical week are meeting with the supply chain team to discuss quarter one proposed projects (understand their scope and help size the benefits), individual project check-ins (provide budget tracking updates, assess performance of previously implemented projects), and provide ad hoc support to their leadership team. Other current focuses are:
  • Calculating financial benefits for potential projects in order to prioritise our bucket of capital spend for the year.
  • Redesigning the Supply Chain scorecard to give greater visibility of what metrics can be used to improve certain KPIS
  • Creating budgets for new infrastructure projects
  • Tracking executed projects to ensure business case benefits are met. Assessing reasons for performance.

What's your background?

I grew up on the Hibiscus Coast of Auckland, where I was lucky to live across the road from a park and beach so needless to say spent most of my time outdoors. In terms of education I attended Orewa College, and the university of Auckland, and more recently gained my Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) qualification. I started at FSNI as a summer intern in 2015 and was then fortunate enough to be offered a graduate role in 2017 after completing my degree. The graduate programme lasted two years and gave me the opportunity to work in Strategy & New Ventures, Property Development and I.T. in a variety of roles, subsequently settling in the Strategy team as a business partner for two years before moving on to my current role. Continuing to learn and gain new skills is very important to me and post CFA I’ve been learning Piano and training for marathons to make use of my newfound time!

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Yes without a doubt. For my job, having business partnering skills are key to succeed, and although the technical finance skills are beneficial they could be learnt on the job. I’m a big believer that with a good attitude and work ethic you have the tools to succeed at whatever you put your mind to. Another great characteristic for any job is curiosity, for example understanding what’s behind a number or monthly result and why? This allows you to provide actionable information to decision makers.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

The best thing about my job is being able to turn insights into execution with real results. An example of this is being able to say if we can increase utilisation of our trucks (carrying products to stores) by X% then we can save $Y. Or that post implementation of our warehouse management system in our distribution centres, productivity has increased X% allowing our people to pick store orders faster and more accurately which gives customers more of what they want when they want it. I love that the work we undertake has tangible outcomes you can see.

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  • If you have the opportunity to then definitely look into doing a semester abroad – I think you would grow as a person which can be even more important than securing a current job. I didn’t do this but if I had my time again definitely would.
  • Keep learning – have a plan of how you want to further your education after university. Additional qualifications can be hugely beneficial for technical skills and help you stand out.
  • Don’t spend all your time in the library. Find a balance that allows you to get the grades but not at the expense of your social life.