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Vice President, Operational Improvement

Title: Vice President, Operational Improvement

Location: Arlington, VA / York, PA / Sterling Heights, MI / Louisville, KY / virtual with travel is also an option.

Company: Major U.S.-based, international defense, aerospace, and security company.

Relationship: This role reports to the Platform & Services Sector President.

Specific Responsibilities: The VP, Operational Improvement will oversee all manufacturing processes to ensure that end products are completed within established time frames, in a cost-effective manner and meet or exceed quality standards and customer expectations. This role will closely interface with all key Value Stream functions, including Supply Chain, Operations, Production Control, Quality, Continuous Improvement, Engineering and Logistics. The position is responsible for identifying and implementing best practices and working with business unit leadership to ensure flawless execution and Operational Excellence. The successful candidate will have demonstrated strong leadership impact while collaborating with business and functional leaders to develop and implement strategies in a matrix Environment.

More specifically, the VP, Operational Improvement will:

  • Establish a continuous improvement strategy that supports the overarching Operational Excellence strategic plan
  • Implement and execute a comprehensive value stream strategy that incorporates lean manufacturing processes based on progressive and advanced manufacturing techniques, Just In Time and Lean/Kanban principles
  • Work across all functions and business units to create and drive a world class delivery culture, cycle time and inventory reductions, improved quality and year-over-year cost and margin improvement
  • Determine strategies to improve linearity and predictability of core process – partner with Sourcing, Materials, Planning and others to ensure high quality / continuous flow
  • Provide the necessary leadership to promote change throughout the organization and continue to develop and lead a world class continuous improvement organization
  • Establish a culture of accountability throughout the organization by facilitating an effective goal deployment process that aligns with business unit and corporate goals
  • Integrate Six Sigma/Lean Manufacturing tools to consistently improve process yields, reduce waste and drive productivity
  • Improve product and supplier quality and consistency across the enterprise
  • Manage cost productivity initiatives and identify cost reduction and cost containment opportunities
  • Coach and develop others in the organization to be disciples of continuous improvement and lean principles
  • Direct reports include Director of Continuous Improvement, Director of Quality
  • Establish a clear set of leading Value Stream and Operational Metrics that ensures early identification of issues to allow timely corrective action
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications:  Potential candidates must possess the following to be considered for the opportunity:

  • System administration experience as a super-user
  • Ability to learn new systems quickly
  • Ability to influence and direct change with a small compliment of SME’s
  • Analytical ability
  • Strong Written and oral communication ability
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Ability to build, maintain and enhance client relationships with all stakeholders
  • Good judgment and initiative
  • Strong follow-up and follow-through skills
  • 15 years experience in manufacturing operations with experience utilizing “lean” principles. Over 5 years of executive management experience
  • Experience managing an operations business with revenues of at least $500 million with prior experience working in an organization with revenues of $1 billion or more. Has managed operations across multiple sites
  • Five plus years of experience implementing world class manufacturing principles and techniques including Lean and Six Sigma
  • Played a key leadership role in the development and execution of a large scale continuous improvement and/or organizational transformation initiative. Strong understanding of root cause analysis to optimize operational efficiency and productivity. Proven ability to quickly assess the business and identify key issues affecting the business performance.
  • Has worked for an organization during a time of growth or radical change, and can provide examples of successfully achieving business objectives while maintaining a collaborative culture in this environment
  • High energy, hands-on, and “roll up your sleeves” with the ability to be a driver and change agent in an organization. Strong track record of leading, managing, and improving people and processes
  • Has successfully built teams and developed leadership talent. Has successfully created a “team” environment, bringing together diverse backgrounds and skill sets to produce intended results
  • Proven strength in manufacturing, assembly, operations, Lean, P&L, and first-rate leadership skills
  • Excellent knowledge of Lean, as modeled after the Toyota Production System
  • Experience in multi-plant Supply Chain and the processes of Supply Chain management
  • Multi-plant environment
  • Must possess the ability to establish rapport and working relationships at all levels of the organization and communicate effectively throughout
  • Willingness to travel domestically at least 50% of the time with some international travel

Personal Characteristics:  The successful candidate will possess the following attributes:

  • Strong executive presence. Demonstrated track-record of appropriately challenging status quo
  • Immediate credibility as a decision-maker. Ability to build strong relationships across the organization
  • Proactively engages internal and external stakeholders
  • Self-directed yet works collaboratively with others
  • Proven ability to navigate a complex business environment. High tolerance for change and ambiguity
  • A hands-on leader, with a track record of appropriately diving into the details of the business
  • Has a strong bias for action, can communicate vision clearly and be a driver of change
  • Ability to provide leadership that enables a true competitive advantage for the company and its customers
  • Has an agile leadership style; able to adjust one’s approach to fit the situation as a driver, coach, mentor, or teacher
  • A thorough and insightful problem-solver
  • Low ego needs
  • Uncompromising integrity and work ethic

Education:  Bachelor’s degree is required; Masters is preferred.

Compensation: The selected candidate will receive an attractive compensation package, which will be commensurate with experience, and will include a base salary, performance based bonus, long-term incentive, and comprehensive benefits package.

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