The Corporate Management Trainee Program has so far been full of surprises, and Supply Chain Week was no different! Our week was broken down into two parts: a three-day trip that included two separate plant visits, and two days of functional immersion, including presentations, discussions and case study presentations.
On our first day, we visited Kraft Heinz’s plant in Mont Royal and it wasn’t long before we were introduced to the Plant Manager, changed into our uniform and safety gear, and given a tour of the massive facility. The tour was followed by job shadows, where we were tasked with jobs such as preparing and bottling sauces, and quality checking our famous Kraft Peanut Butter. We even capped things off with a taste test of numerous Kraft Heinz products! Looking back, it was truly incredible seeing firsthand how much attention and effort goes into the quality of our products, which is a key takeaway of these visits.
For the next stop on our trip, we paid a visit to our Ingleside facility. In contrast to the variety of brands and products manufactured and packaged in Mont Royal, our Ingleside plant keeps it simple. They specialize in natural cheese.
Considering the scale of our operations and our strict quality standards, it was overwhelming to witness how our plant can execute the complex cheese production process with such efficiency. In our job shadows, we were exposed to just about every facet of the cheese making process, from receiving the milk to cheese cutting, and finally to packaging. In addition to getting our hands dirty with line work, what really enriched our experience was the opportunity to meet plant staff and hear their experiences. Getting their perspective on our plant and products really provided a unique dimension to our experience.
Upon returning, we had the chance to meet the different functions of Supply Chain that operate out of head office. Fresh from our plant visits, it was easy to connect the dots and see how closely our office collaborates with our plants to deliver our products to retailers. During our job shadows, we were fortunate enough to be able to sit in on a forecasting meeting where members of the supply chain team discussed the performance and status of each SKU. It was great to see how the team could scrutinize every detail but keep an eye on the bigger picture – a great skill to have regardless of what role or function we end up in.
Not only did Supply Chain Week teach us about how our products are made and brought to our customers but it also taught us of the endless emphasis Kraft Heinz puts on safety, quality, and service. Not to mention, meeting and speaking with our front-line workers was a powerful learning experience we will all keep with us forever.
Not only did we get to learn about our company’s complex operations, but we got to spend quality time with each other, and become closer as a cohort. Hopefully next week is even more exciting!