Plant Controller - Richmond Pet, Blue Buffalo

General Mills

General Mills

Accounting & Finance
Richmond, IN, USA
Posted on Friday, June 16, 2023

Job Description

About Blue Buffalo:
Love them like family, feed them like family.” ® Everything at Blue Buffalo starts with this simple idea.

We think of our dogs and cats as family members, so we believe their food should be natural and healthy. In fact, this was the sole reason for starting the Blue Buffalo Company. When the beloved Bishop family dog, Blue, faced a variety of health issues, Bill and his two sons set out to create a pet food that was made with only the highest quality natural ingredients—the kind of things a family member deserves. Ten years later we have, in many ways, accomplished what we set out to do—help our dogs and cats live happy, healthy lives. And we’re only getting started!

Feeding healthy ingredients isn’t just a trend for us. It’s our history. Since we started in 2003, we’ve always used high-quality natural ingredients with real meat first. Never any corn, wheat or soy. And no poultry by-product meals. It’s been that way since day one for every product we’ve ever created. And it always will be.

Mission: Our vision is to feed all pets the natural BLUE way as the undisputed leader in wholesome, natural pet food.

Plant Controller - Richmond Pet Food Manufacturing


Richmond serves as the flagship plant for Blue Buffalo and manufactures several varieties of dry dog and cat food. Our commitment to culture, rooted in the Cohesive Team structure, and our business imperative to unlock capacity, makes Richmond the destination of choice. Richmond produces ~400MM pounds of the world’s best pet food with a glidepath that will require us to run ~600MM pounds in just a few years. The Pet segment is unique in the General Mills’ portfolio because of the deep integration with the business and Supply Chain. There truly is no place like BLUE.


Planning and coordinating plant budget and business planning activities in alignment with the business policies and practices.


Budget and Forecast Reporting:

  • Meet the cost per pound budgeted (conversion cost) for the Richmond Plant.
  • Performance Standards: Ensure over the current fiscal year that the ending cost per pound (conversion cost) meets the business objective of $.1634/Lbs.
  • Duties and Activities: Provide accurate costs for the plant, ensuring expenses and credits are posted in the same time as occurred
  • Skills and Knowledge: Knowledge of SAP and skills in Excel will allow for Controller to accomplish this goal
  • Ensure effective plant financial management
  • Develop, execute, and monitor the annual operating plan, periodic financial forecasts, and monthly financial close
  • Support delivery of annual productivity improvement/cost savings targets
  • Executes routine inputs of plant operating information and performs trouble shooting with vendor and payable matters
  • Engage in plantwide activities to develop all Buffs, including safety observations, Zero Loss coaching, and plant floor time
  • Maintaining audit ready status of internal controls through periodic review and self-audit

Build and Grow Cohesive Finance Team:

  • Facilitate Team Meeting, One-On-Ones, Provide Guidance for Individual Growth, Development and Career Path
  • Performance Standards: Meet One on One with Finance team members, once a month to review Well-Being, Growth and Success.
  • Duties and Activities: Review performance against the beginning of year objectives which align with the plant and business objectives. This will provide guidance to what the individual on the Finance team contributes to the overall success of the business and operation.
  • Continue the path of Table Group, follow, and guide the team to be a strong example of a cohesive team.
  • Skills and Knowledge: Experience and continuous education in Dale Carnegie, Table Group and other trainings will help to grow the Finance team
  • Fulfill plant leadership team responsibilities
  • Collaborate as a strong voice on the Richmond Leadership Team (RLT)
  • Support development and execution of site strategies, including Zero Loss Culture transformation and large capital project execution
  • Provide support and leadership on cross functional plant and corporate initiatives.

Cost Analysis:

  • Drive HMM via cost analysis. Provide market or performance trends to anticipate analysis to avoid costs or set for possible cost saving opportunities for the plant.
  • Performance Standards: Develop one report per fiscal quarter which highlights a cost savings opportunity for the plant or overall operations of the business.
  • Duties and Activities: Review OPEX for any anomalies.
  • Skills and Knowledge: SAP knowledge and advance level Excel Spreadsheet education.
  • Self Development:
  • Drive personal challenge to be the best leader possible, which strengthens the- Finance team, the leadership team, and the overall operation of the plant.
  • Performance Standards: Take 2 training courses during the fiscal year, which will enhance ability to a drive change, communication, and leadership.
  • Duties and Activities: Review opportunities by getting feedback on self-development, both internal and external.
  • Skills and Knowledge: Open minded, seek feedback and take action when required to improve overall value to the team, organization, or business.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, Finance, Business or related field
    4+ years of related experience
  • Experience with SAP in a manufacturing environment
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office tools
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to work well on team and build effective relationships across all levels of the organization (Partnership for Impact) and coach/develop others


  • 7+ years of related experience
  • Ability to manage multiple priorities in a dynamic environment
  • Experience working in a finance/accounting role within manufacturing
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving abilities
  • Experience managing others and leading teams
  • Experience in food manufacturing
  • Assertive, self-confident, and willing to offer opinions and insights (Plant/Site Leadership)
  • Initiative and ability to work independently and to effectively work with a team (Situational Agility)
  • Ability to influence, develop, and motivate peers (Matrix Relationship Management)
  • Desire to work cross functionally with all plant functions (Cross-Functional Leadership
  • Proven analytical and strategic skills (Analytic Proficiency)


We exist to make food the world loves. But we do more than that. Our company is a place that prioritizes being a force for good, a place to expand learning, explore new perspectives and reimagine new possibilities, every day. We look for people who want to bring their best — bold thinkers with big hearts who challenge one other and grow together. Because becoming the undisputed leader in food means surrounding ourselves with people who are hungry for what’s next.