NutraWomen Wednesday: Rachel Jones, MS, RDN, Sr VP, Chief Product Innovation & Science Officer, GNC
Jones said the recent promotion is an exciting time, not only for Jones, but for GNC.
“For those who are familiar with GNC over the years, so many consumers expect the best and the latest innovation from us. But over the past few years, as we were struggling with supply chain challenges, we were on a bit of an innovation hiatus, as I'd say. So this recent promotion is just really exciting because for the first time ever, we actually are creating an innovation team that encompasses basically all functions that support the new product innovation pipeline. So for me, it's really an opportunity to continue to build upon a team that is responsible for how the product looks, how the product sounds in terms of the marketing and how we tell the story,” said Jones.
Jones' new role involves overseeing a cross-functional group of 40 associates while also partnering nationally with recognized researchers, scientists, toxicologists, statisticians and universities. Under Jones’ leadership, she has built an industry-leading integrated product innovation function which includes product design and development, product brand strategy and scientific affairs functions.
“Fast forward from 2004 professionally until today, the journey has been something because at the time, GNC was like one of the only games in town. So that's where most people associated supplements with,” said Jones. “We were the only game in town for a bit and then over the years there's just been an influx of supplements, whether it be online and mass market and grocery stores. So while we used to be able to set trends and lead from the front, suddenly there's just this boom of options for consumers and it really makes you up your game.”