Our People – Tomasz Saternus, Senior Technical Manager – Billington Foods

The Billington Group would not be where it is without its amazing teams. In this ‘Our People’ series, we share a bit more about the diverse roles across our businesses and provide some insight into what makes Billington employees tick!

Name: Tomasz Saternus

Job title: Senior Technical Manager

How long have you been with Billington Group? Please tell us a bit about your journey within the Group and how you got to where you are today: 

I started my adventure with the business back in December 2017 as Technical Services Manager at Dunkleys in Wellingborough, In 2019 the site was acquired by Billington Foodservice and I was promoted to Technical Manager, where I worked until January 2022. In February I moved to work at the Scunthorpe site as Senior Technical Manager. 

Describe a typical day in your role: 

In a technical role there is no such thing as a typical day. One day you can be dealing with an unannounced customer audit, the next day you will be tasting soups or sauces or traveling to meet customers. A big part of the job is building good relationships with customers and delivering our technical strategy. 

What’s the best part of your job?
Working with a great team and being able to influence change. 

What are the biggest challenges you face when working as a senior technical manager?
Challenge is an opportunity. I had to learn to accept that the ‘to do’ list is constantly changing. 

Can you tell us about something you’ve enjoyed working on recently?
Development of the technical and quality teams. My team is key to the success of the business and this is only possible if we have the right team and we work to develop them and support their strengths – I think this is one of the most important ongoing projects that a Senior Technical Manager must drive.  

What makes the food sector exciting to work in? 

That’s a very good question. The fact that every day is different is something that keeps me on my toes. By no means is working in food manufacturing easy, but it’s great if you love a challenge. I would say it’s almost like Marmite, you either love it  or hate it – obviously, I’m loving it!

What three key skills would you say you need when working as a senior technical manager?

Attention to detail

Good communication skills

Ability to conduct situation-based risk assessments 

What advice would you give to someone looking to get started in a role like yours?

DO IT! It is a very rewarding job but be prepared to take all the challenges and demands that come with it! 

What makes The Billington Group stand out as a great place to work?

The Billington Group is a people-oriented business. If you are open to learning and developing yourself, then this is the business to work for.  

Now a bit more about you….

Coffee or tea?

Coffee please… milky 😊

What’s your favourite guilty pleasure food?

White chocolate… smooth, sweet and creamy!

What’s your favourite dish to cook at home?

Lasagna, the Italian classic with bit of a twist

Favourite weird food combinations? We love salt and vinegar crisps and chocolate, or the famous/infamous McDonald’s fries dipped in a milkshake. 

Cheese and jam… nothing weird about that? 

What do you get up to outside of work? 

I love traveling and photography, those two work very well together. I am also a big fan of the West End, so I never say no to an impromptu visit to London.