Branded - Tamara Pearce
Operations Manager, KFC
How did you land the job?
I responded to a blind advertisement from KPMG for the post of operations manager for “a multinational brand with restaurants islandwide”. Despite not knowing the organisation, I was intrigued by the posting and applied. When formally introduced to the organisation, during the interview stage we had a good opportunity to interview each other. I liked what I saw and felt that KFC was a company with which I would be able to continue to learn and grow both careerwise and personally, and, most importantly for me, have fun!
How long have you been in the job?
I joined the KFC family in January 2007, so it has been approximately five-and-a-half years with the brand.
What’s great about your job?
Well, there are several things that I believe are great about my job. The KFC environment is very fast-paced; no two days are exactly alike. This, combined with an organisational culture that encourages creativity and is goal-oriented, makes for a constant whirlwind of activities. We always have deadlines to meet. I also work closely with our marketing team where we engineer various ways to recognise and reward our teams and to encourage fun at work. This sometimes allows me to share my silly side. I enjoy that and I get a few laughs, too! Even though there is an administrative side to my job, my favourite moments are when I am in the restaurant with the team. Being a part of delivering that “So Good” experience to customers is very special; in particular to our younger customers who eagerly anticipate another treat at KFC. That always makes me smile. KFC is a family business. This is perhaps the reason for the family culture that exists. We have fun working together. Despite the pressures associated with running any successful company, we work together and challenge each other cross-functionally to be the best and get things done.
Tell us something that we might not know about the KFC brand.
Something that not many persons may realise by just visiting the KFC restaurants is that there is an awesome team of dedicated individuals at our Restaurant Support Centre in marketing, human resources, accounts, administration, information technology and auditing who are meticulously working behind the scenes to make everything so good. Our maintenance team does a beautiful job of reimagining the restaurants and keeping everything in good working order. Our distribution/logistics and supply chain team ensures that we are well balanced with inventory in all our 32 locations islandwide. This support is critical to the operations teams which are in the restaurants with our customers. We listen keenly to the voice of our consumers and do a lot of research to understand their needs. This helps to drive our innovation with so many different menu items. For example, we have the best chicken sandwiches, hands down. Competitively priced, they are made from 100 per cent freshly prepared chicken fillets. But we don’t stop there, we recently had an exciting sandwich offer, ‘Doubilicious’ that took the country by storm this past summer. So continue to look out for exciting new products from us. At KFC, we have a price for every pocket. Students who wish to have a snack after school but may be constrained by their pocket often choose KFC for that in- between school and home snack.
What makes KFC an attractive option for those looking for fast food?
KFC is a beautiful blend of the traditional and the new. We all know the finger-licking flavours that we grew up on like the Colonel’s Original, Hot and Spicy and our famous BBQ Chicken (that is only available in Jamaica), our cravable hot wings and the popular Zinger sandwich. We also keep our customers happy by constantly offering innovative new menu items that are in tune to their needs at the right time. During the summer we launched a variety of menu items including the ‘Jamaica 50 Meal Deal’ and ‘The Golden Bucket’, both celebrating two very different but very special events — Jamaica’s 50th anniversary of Independence and our 2012 Olympic Glory. Just last Tuesday we introduced our new ‘What a Deal’ menu! An affordable line-up of great-tasting treats starting at only $100 each. This menu includes two different flavours of grilled wraps, a mini bowl, cheesy fries and you can now add bacon to all our sandwiches and quite a few other products too. Real food, fast! We have also raised the bar for the QSR dining experience. The ambiance and décor of our rebranded restaurants make the experience, in addition to the food, second to none.
Where can consumers find out more about your brand?
We are on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kfcjamaica. Log onto our Facebook page where we have lots of exciting apps and games all the time, customers can also have a chance to win prizes. They can also follow us on Twitter @kfcjamaica or give us a call at our Restaurant Support Centre at 941-6912-3 and most definitely step into any one of our 32 KFC restaurants for a meal or a quick snack, with 32 restaurants islandwide, we are close by!