Responsible for creating, supporting, and developing new and innovative product/process designs related to textiles and improving existing products/processes. This is successfully accomplished by understanding, accurately specifying, and adhering to customer requirements, utilizing and applying quality tools and methods and pursuing continuous improvement in all aspects of product and process design. These efforts will have a direct impact on reducing labor and material costs, while improving value, reliability, and performance. The associate will plan and manage process and product related design and validation activities.
Product and Process Specifications - 25%
* Establish and maintain process specifications for all fabric products to produce the highest level of quality throughout the entire manufacturing / fabrication / assembly process.
* Determine the optimum process routing for all products, producing the highest quality levels at the lowest cost.
* Develop written procedures in the form of Standard Practice Instructions to specifically describe how to perform a required task and steps and tools necessary to complete that task.
* Establish procedures and systems to prevent the production of off-quality products
* Establish approval systems as a means of controlling process conditions, fabric routings, standard practices, and documentation of completed work assignments.
* Provide the cost accounting department and the industrial engineering department with necessary information to determine product costs and departmental cost standards.
Problem Solving and Quality Improvement - 35%
* Maintain an effective audit program for feedback to production managers, engineering, and quality assurance. Communicate how well process specifications are being followed, the capability of controlling process variables, and the maintenance condition of the equipment.
* Provide technical service to all departments to resolve quality related problems.
* Assist in the training and education of hourly, supervisory and management associates as required.
* Work with current suppliers to develop and improve existing products and processes, striving to reduce cost and waste.
* Develop and maintain process control testing procedures for work-in-process to eliminate any off-quality performance.
New Product Introduction - 30%
* Work with product development engineers to determine the optimum process routing and conditions for sample new products.
* Assist product development engineers in monitoring the quality and “runability” of samples in each production department.
* Work with facilities planning to define plant space needs concerning equipment and it’s functionality.
* Conduct plant evaluations of new equipment to determine performance levels in the areas of quality, safety, maintenance and cost.
* Prior to starting up a newly installed piece of equipment, work with manufacturing engineering, provide a safety inspection, and provide preliminary operating conditions to the production area.
* Work with suppliers in developing and improving new products and processes while reducing costs.
* Coordinate trials and evaluations of new products to ensure runability, quality, and performance. Document results.
Administration and Other - 10%
* Document in writing all projects, studies, and work assignments and there outcomes to provide accurate and complete information for future reference.
* Stay abreast of all current and new technology in continuous fabric processing. Review trade magazines and periodicals, attend technical conferences, and meet with supplier technical reps.
* Continuously work toward automating manufacturing processes and monitoring results through automation.
* As required, maintain records in an orderly fashion and analyze production and/or quality data as appropriate. Provide regular reports to stakeholders as appropriate.
* Quality - Integrates quality at the source thinking and activities in daily, individual, team and project work.
SCOPE OF RESPONSIBILITY:
* Responsible for developing and continuously improving all fabric pleating and gluing processes in Middleton. Additionally responsibility for technical aspects of all fabrics, which go into products for the Window Fashions division.
* Woven and non-woven fabrics used in the following Window Fashions products: vertical blinds, single-cell, double-cell, pleated, and roman shades. New fabrics yet to be identified.
Education and Experience
Bachelors degree required in chemical engineering with strong industrial experience with non-wovens textiles. A bachelors degree in textile engineering is strongly preferred in this position, plus at a minimum of 5 years of practical manufacturing and engineering experience in designing and improving manufacturing processes involving textiles
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Must be flexible with job assignments, able to work independently and well with others (team environment). Must be organized, methodical, and handle multiple tasks simultaneously and work to an established timeline. Position takes direction from VP Commercial Business Unit, Engineering and Product Management. Must manage multiple medium or large scope projects, Must communicate well and properly document results of test procedures, and have knowledge of SWF 5S Program.
* Data collection and management of database.
* Technical writing skills for memos, lab reports, and project updates.
* Strong general math skills (add, subtract, multiply, divide, percentages, fractions, metric conversions, algebra, and geometry)
* Good interpersonal skills
* Good analytical and problem solving skills including statistical analysis.
* Good communication skills (verbal, written)
* Technical Writing
* General computer skills Excel, MS Word, Lotus Notes, MS Project and Access
* Frontier System inventory (FRN)
* Springs Terminology
* Preparing Samples for Testing and Analysis
* Familiarity with Springs products and processes (pleating, gluing)
* In depth knowledge of textiles, textile engineering, and various manufacturing processes as they are used in the textile industry. Examples include, spinning, weaving, dyeing, printing, finishing, pleating, and gluing. Both woven and non-woven fabrics are used in the division’s manufacturing processes.
* Manage work according to established project timelines.
* Knowledge and application of engineering principles.
* Strong understanding of color assessment and measurement.
* Strong software skills in spreadsheets, word processing, presentation software, and CAD.
* Mechanical aptitude and dexterity is required to work around machines safely and effectively.
* Creativity is required to develop new processes and solutions in a timely fashion.