Building your career at British Sugar
Human Resources Director
We are big enough that there are lots of opportunities to work on varied projects and tasks but we are small enough that you can make a difference.
We have a diverse range of roles which offer stretch and opportunities to learn. They include Finance, Agriculture, Operations, Science, Commercial, Sales and Customer’s Service, Innovation, Science, Procurement, HR, People Development, ICT, Facilities, Logistics, Health and Safety, Communications and Project Management.
There are opportunities to work on projects and secondments across functions and sites to learn new skills or even move your career in a completely new direction.
People are encouraged to develop throughout their careers at British Sugar. This could be in terms of technical skills such as operating a particular piece of machinery to behavioural skills such as prioritisation.
We invest 12% of our wage bill in learning and development solutions to ensure our people have the skills not only to do the role they are doing but to prepare them for the next step. However the true extent of our investment in people is far greater than that. We know people learn most of their skills outside of the classroom and so we encourage and facilitate our people to learn from each other and from experience and use formal face to face courses only where no other option is available.
We have a number of development programmes available including Lead the Way, Management fundamentals, Graduate and Apprenticeship schemes and the Operations Technician’s Qualification & Credit framework. For those outside of these programmes there are lots of other learning solutions available covering topics like resilience, personal effectiveness and mindfulness.
Where possible we try to promote our own at British Sugar and look across the talent we have in all areas of the business when recruiting. There are always a number of projects taking place across the business which offer secondment opportunities for our people where they can gain experience working in other areas of the business.
We are a part of AB Sugar which also includes AB Sugar China, Azucarera in Spain, Illovo Sugar in South Africa, Germains Seed Technology which operates across the world not to mention Vivergo Fuels here in the UK. There are opportunities for our people to apply for permanent roles in any of these other business or take a 6 month secondment as a part of the AB Sugar International Experience Programme.
We are also part of the wider Associated British Foods family of businesses which includes Primark, Jordans & Ryvita, Silverspoon, AB Agri plus many more. ABF is a diversified international food, ingredients and retail group with sales of £13.4bn, 130,000 employees and operations in 50 countries across Europe, southern Africa, the Americas, Asia and Australia. The scale of the ABF business provides many opportunities for our people to progress and develop.
We ensure it pays to work for British Sugar. We offer competitive salaries of which 90% are paid above the average earnings in their local area. However we also know that work isn’t just about compensation and offer a broad range of other benefits.
As a business, we continuously seek opportunities to improve our operations and increase our productivity. People are at the heart of our success and their passion contributes to the development and growth of our business, ensuring we continue to be an advanced and sustainable manufacturer.
A key element for British Sugar to attract, recruit, retain, develop and motivate our people is to have a wide-range of benefits on offer, meeting the needs of everyone no matter where they are in their career or personal lives.
The beet sugar supply chain is concentrated in rural areas and directly involves around 3,500 growers based in over 75 parliamentary constituencies. In 2014/15 these British farmers received £317 million in receipts from British Sugar.
With the end of the EU sugar quotas in October 2017, we expect there will be more opportunities for sugar beet growers as the factories operate at full capacity.
In addition, our supply chain involves around 7,000 different businesses making it one of the largest customers for many goods and services in the East of England.
Our annual spend on transport, storage, maintenance, rates and rent is around £70 million. The spend includes maintenance and equipment hire (£35 million) and distribution/warehousing (£29 million).
We are not only part of the largest sugar producer in the world, but we are also one of the most cost efficient processors in Europe. This claim is supported by the work that LMC International Ltd (an agribusiness consultancy) does on world sugar production comparative costs, compared by country and region.
We are focused on delivering responsible growth in the UK. Embedded in our business is a culture of continuous improvement, delivered through our Performance Improvement Plan (PIP); a central pillar of which is resource management. To this end, British Sugar has built a business model around using resources more efficiently and developing new revenue streams from resource waste. This includes everything from new horticulture practices to off-setting our use of fossil fuels through bioenergy generation.
Over the past five years we have invested £250 million in our four advanced manufacturing plants, introducing new technology and practices to improve resource efficiency and ensuring that our manufacturing capability remains world class.
We now generate 25% of our revenue from non-core sales. We sell topsoil for landscaping, aggregate for building, animal feed, chemicals for the cosmetics industry, bioethanol fuels, liquefied carbon dioxide for a range of industries and electricity to the national grid.