Director, Menu Strategy & Innovation

Subway Canada
February 8, 2023
Toronto, Canada


Position Summary:

Blue Rock is partnered with Subway Canada to identify their next Director of Menu Strategy & Innovation.  The Director leads short and long-term menu strategies and builds a robust new product pipeline that successfully meets evolving guest needs and drives Subway business objectives and brand affinity. The Director partners with Marketing and Cross Functional Teams to bring new products forward to the National Marketing Calendar by adhering to Stage Gate and New Product Development processes.  The Director partners with US Off Premise team to develop programs to drive growth in the Canadian market.

Essential Functions:

  • Senior leader to lead Subway Canada menu evolution and strategy, pipeline development and validation. Develop, gain alignment to, and lead a guest- and insight-driven innovation pipeline to deliver strategic objectives  Cultivate an in-depth understanding of target consumer.
  • Partner with the US Off Premise team to build programs to support growth.
  • Lead cross-functional teams to successfully develop and launch initiatives, including Culinary, Operations, Analytics, Consumer Insights, Advertising, Merchandising, Media, Training, PR and Supply Chain.
  • Develops strategies and innovative solutions, with keen focus on consumer and business impact. Results focused leader that successfully manages long term vision with short term in-market execution.
  • Lead & Develop a guest- and insight-driven innovation pipeline to deliver strategic objectives. Drive menu insights and trends and competitive menu intelligence to determine implications and recommend strategic and tactical responses.
  • Partner closely with Culinary and Operations teams to bring ideas to life. Establish clear culinary guardrails to efficiently and effectively advance new product development. Partners with culinary team and vendor partners to conduct innovation sessions and manage innovation processes to assure valuable output.
  • Plan and synthesize all new product research such as concept screening, product focus groups, Sensory testing and ad-hoc research as needed and assure proper/relevant cross-functional communication of insights/learnings. Partner with Marketing to drive recommendations for new product testing and national marketing calendar integration.

Skills & Abilities Required:

  • Passion for food and the Company’s Brand
  • Highly skilled at building collaborative, high performing, cross-functional teams.
  • Strong sense of ownership of vision and execution
  • An innovative, energizing leader with a record of driving breakthrough product innovation in food or other consumer facing industries
  • Strong tenacity, creativity, and partnering skills to overcome persistent challenges with the team
  • Innate curiosity and growth mindset

Background Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred
  • 7-10+ years in food development/innovation, preferably in the restaurant industry
  • Experience building out food innovation process strategy, 1 and 3 year plans
  • Ability to lead the data analytics team to effectively diagnose a problem or assess a situation in order to drive to a smart business solution
  • Understanding of marketing/brand/product development management principles
  • Experience working cross functionally with operations


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