Good people, working with good people, for our common good.
KeHE-a natural, organic, specialty and fresh food distributor-is all about "good" and is growing, so there's never been a more exciting time to join our team. If you're enthusiastic about working in an environment with a people-first culture and an organization committed to good living, good food and good service, we'd love to talk to you!
Directly lead and support the planning, analysis, design, project management, implementation, and operational sustainability of all distribution automation solutions. The Director will lead this strategic, time sensitive objective at KeHE through collaborative efforts with the solution provider, local distribution center team, warehouse support resources and required third party business partners to successfully design, implement, operate, and maintain the automation solutions including the following:
- Ensure that the automation solutions support world class Safety and Food Safety standards & meet all regulatory standards and the company’s expectations for employee health and welfare to mitigate risk.
- Act as a liaison between the solution provider and the local operating team to develop the core competency and skills required to successfully integrate the automation solution into the conventional distribution center environment
- Support world class standards for food safety regarding storage, handling and order fulfillment capabilities associated with the automation solution
- Support the local distribution leadership teams with superior internal customer service by driving automation objectives including timely execution, high quality installation standards, on-budget implementation, and effective performance management by collaborating with all project contributors and holding each accountable
- Develop the ROI analysis and drive price negotiations with the vendor of choice to maximize the value proposition associated with the automation solution investment; ensuring that contractual performance obligations are exceeded
- Enterprise leader in the search, design, implementation, and execution of the KEHE automation & robotics strategy with a sense of urgency
- Drive change to ensure projects meet objectives.
- Lead and drive projects, including the implementation of JDA WLM (Labor Management System, LMS).
- Develop and maintain key operational metrics and reporting.
- Closely manage various automation systems, third party relationships with automation vendors, and provide guidance to local management teams regarding day-to-day operation of automated solutions.
- Act as the lead key stakeholder in the development of the project justification including cost analysis, savings identification, sizing/preliminary design, and cost proposal for the planned automation solutions
- Safely and Strategically manage the physical integration of the automation solution into our brownfield distribution centers such as floor conditions and concrete work, electrical and pneumatic energy supply, fire protection, lighting, and associated project objectives in coordination with vendor partners
- Responsible for project milestones being achieved by holding contributors accountable for on-time/on-budget delivery of expectations
- Lead and coordinate plans and activities with city, state and other officials for the appropriate permitting and ensure local codes and federal regulations are met, as needed
- Develop and execute a collaborative process to evaluate the quality of the equipment installation to ensure the company’s expectations are exceeded
- Lead and partner in the system commissioning and functional integration testing to gain alignment that pre-production acceptance criteria are met prior to scheduled launch
- Lead as the Pilot Director for the project to validate that the expected KPI is being achieved including hourly production rates, inventory management and accuracy and operating expenses
- Ensure Managers are well trained and extremely effective to ensure the operational optimization of the automation solution
- Develop a process to evaluate the maintenance program to ensure the equipment is being properly serviced with the appropriate preventative/predictive maintenance cycles and parts inventory is effectively managed
- Engage in the project completion ROI validation process to ensure the expected benefits of the project are being realized by the company
- Responsibility for ensuring effective and efficient support of Regional and DC level operations management for sustainability of the automation solution
- Participates with Senior Management in long and short-term company planning
- Ability to lead others to a consensus and influence change.
- Ensures compliance with applicable laws and regulations
Minimum Requirements, Qualifications, Additional Skills, Aptitude
- Bachelor’s degree in business or related field or equivalent work experience
SKILLS & EXPERIENCE
- 7 plus years of proven innovative experience in distribution operations including mechanization, robotics, and automated order fulfillment solutions
- 5 plus years of project management
- Ability to travel 50-75% of time, as business needed
- Success implementing warehouse automation, robotics, ASRS and controls systems
- Knowledge of systems: WMS, WCS, LMS and PLC controls associated with automation solution integration and management
- Experience with distribution operations including mechanization and automation technology, as well as MHE robots
- Experience with building and facility maintenance including the proven ability to manage maintenance
- Knowledge of local and national compliance codes and experience in municipality permitting as needed
- Understanding of financial/accounting principles & budgeting
- Proficient computer skills including, Visio, Excel, MS Word, MS Project, PowerPoint, AutoCAD, and Power BI software platforms
- Excellent communication, interpersonal, and managerial skills
- Demonstrate project management and successful implementation of complex initiatives
- Proven ability to effectively manage accountability of self and others
- Strong ability to leverage thought diversity to identify and execute innovative ideas
- Strong communication skills, ability to establish direct relationships
- Strong organizational skills
- Ability to execute with speed and agility despite challenges