Employers

Price is right at Robertson's thanks to ScotGrad placement project

Robertson’s Fine Foods, a meat processing business based in Ayrshire, has implemented a new product pricing structure after taking on a graduate to work on a ScotGrad placement project.

Published: 23/05/2017

Robertson’s Fine Foods, a subsidiary of John Robertson & Sons, was undergoing a large expansion and required assistance to create an effective product pricing structure.  The costing of goods had previously been undertaken by the organisation’s sales director, who used his extensive experience in the industry to calculate profitable margins. Following his retirement, the company was looking for someone to develop a formalised system which could convey accurate prices in real time.

Robertson’s Fine Foods required someone with a degree level of education and strong analytical skills to oversee the project. The business appointed Melissa Freeman on a 12-month placement through ScotGrad. Melissa, a graduate from Glasgow Caledonian University with a degree in Accountancy, carried out a full financial review of the organisation, its products and wider industry. 

Six graduates standing next to ScotGrad banner

Melissa (third from left) at the ScotGrad training course.

As Robertson’s is a smaller organisation, Melissa benefitted from an all-round learning experience in the accounts department; from costing accounting, to payroll, to preparing month end accounts. At the end of the project, she had established a rigorous product costing system which was capable of reacting to the huge variations in prices usually seen in the raw meat industry.  

Aileen Brown, finance director at John Robertson & Sons, said: “During the implementation of our growth strategy, we were unable to provide significant time or resource to the product pricing project. The ScotGrad placement gave us the assistance we needed and allowed us to hire someone with the right qualifications on a short-term basis.

“Melissa was a huge asset to the team. She brought with her the right set of skills and great energy levels and helped us refine a very important aspect of our business during an important time. Thanks to her new system, we can quickly and accurately price new contracts to supply, and track variations in our pricing structure.

“The entire placement process was straightforward and the ScotGrad team were on hand to provide assistance throughout. Due to the success, we are looking at the possibility of bringing on another graduate to help on a future project.”

Iain MacGillivray, account manager at Scottish Enterprise, said: “Robertson’s Fine Foods has seen real benefits from the ScotGrad project but more importantly, they have gained a real asset to the business in Melissa. She quickly got to grips with the nature of the business and provided invaluable support to Aileen and the team.”

Following her 12-month placement, Melissa was offered a permanent position at Robertson’s Fine Foods. She works closely with the accounts department and continues to assists on specific projects.

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