Elkay Director of Engineering in Broadview, Illinois

Job Description


Our goal at Elkay is to inspire everyday – customers, employees…and the employees of tomorrow. We focus on doing the right thing so we can be in business forever. Our values-driven culture emphasizes investing in people and treating them like part of the family. We’re financially-stable and privately-owned with a solid reputation for ethics, integrity, giving back, and providing an engaging, inclusive environment where careers flourish and grow.

It’s Elkay’s people who really give us our edge. We empower our employees to take the lead in delivering Elkay’s exceptional customer experience. Our commitment to our people is a recipe for success that has fueled our growth from a three-person shop in 1920 to one of today’s leading international suppliers of plumbing, water delivery and cabinetry products. If you’re ready for a new career challenge where everything you do will make a difference, talk to us about joining the Elkay family.

This is an exciting leadership role in our growing company! This is your chance to shape product engineering at our global organization!

The Director of Engineering is responsible for all aspects of product engineering activities as part of a cross-functional organization focused on delivering impactful innovation to the marketplace. Manage short-term and long-term priorities to meet financial commitments around new product development, and continually build technical and organizational capabilities that provide competitive advantage. Collaborate with counterparts in business development, product management, and operations and supply chain to deliver innovative new products rooted in deep customer insights, ensure quality of new product launches, and improve the quality and cost position of existing products. Lead and direct to define the underlying “platform” strategy behind innovation and product development activities, to ensure the most effective product development process.

Specific duties and responsibilities include:

  • Recruit, energize, and retain top-grade existing talent. Continually evaluate talent level and design, leading an organization that maximizes business impact, and return on Engineering and Research & Development investment. Build and continually nurture a culture of inventive inquiry, creative urgency, continuous improvement and perfection of products, and a contagious competiveness.
  • Implement and continuously improve product development and engineering processes that maximize innovation, quality, manufacturability, and best cost.
  • Execute product design to meet company objectives. Direct the design of new products and redesign/ modification of components for improvement of existing products.
  • Collaborate with Sales and Product Management to gather and understand customer and consumer insights to fuel industry-leading and ideally disruptive product innovations. Continually drive product and process innovation, and contribute to the formation and maintenance of a robust product development pipeline.
  • Lead intellectual property (IP) strategy and execution. Develop a deep understanding of the industry’s IP landscape and grow the company’s IP portfolio to attain and build competitive advantage. Work with internal and external legal counsel to manage the patent docket and establish broad, powerful protection for key company IP.
  • Continually evaluate and improve the tools, and practices used in engineering and product development. Ensure that the organization utilizes new technology to competitive advantage, maximizing capabilities and productivity.
  • Utilize deep understanding of the company’s products and processes to contribute to the conceptualization, and implementation of manufacturing strategies that improve the company’s profitability and capability to effectively serve its markets.
  • Explore outsourced options which might include the development of an offshore engineering center to drive rapid innovation, as well as learn from developing market needs.

Required Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree required; MBA desirable,
  • 10-15 years of engineering experience including at least five years of recent senior-level engineering management responsibility in a global engineering organization.
  • Must have experience deploying lean new product development processes including, but not limited to, design for Six Sigma, stage gate processes, applied statistics, and reliability engineering.
  • Current knowledge of best practices and latest engineering innovations imperative. Able to spot and capitalize on trends in the marketplace. Drive culture of learning, continuous improvement, best-in-class benchmarking, and best practice sharing across the company.
  • Must exhibit a “servant leadership” approach to all facets of interaction including customers, management, and direct reports. An inspirational leader and team-builder able to positively influence others, as well as coach and develop current and future leaders to deliver results, and to support leadership expansion.
  • Able to collaborate in a team-based culture. Must be open to both providing direction and receiving input on all matters pertaining to engineering and R&D; including new product development, manufacturing, supply chain, quality, and marketing.
  • Must possess healthy sense of urgency and the ability to infuse this into the organization.
  • Strong problem resolution skills at both the strategic and tactical level essential.
  • Able to function on multiple planes, with a strong ability to put pieces together from numerous sources/data points.
  • Must have proven track record of measuring results, setting appropriate KPI’s and metrics, and holding team accountable for attainment.
  • Must have strong business presentation skills. Effective interpersonal and written communication skills in an aggressive business environment a must.

Tracking Code: 5031

Job Location: Broadview, Illinois, United States

Position Type: Full-Time/Regular