Continuous Improvement Manager

Corporate Headquarters - San Leandro, CA
Reporting Relationships
Director of Production
Direct Reports
FLSA Status
Full-time | Exempt


An important link in the manufacturing chain, the Continuous Improvement (CI) Manager will work with a cross-functional team within the Operations department to design, implement, monitor, improve and maintain the manufacturing process.  This includes leading the introduction and implementation of key global manufacturing initiatives which will drive continuous improvement at all levels within the Production department.  Additionally, this role will consult with Project Engineers in order to achieve the most efficient and cost effective way of producing the highest quality product possible.  The CI will have the responsibility to develop, evaluate and improve manufacturing methods, utilizing knowledge of the product design, materials and parts, fabrication process, tooling and production equipment capabilities, assembly methods, and quality control standards.  This role will champion improvement activities by aiding plant teams to improve the process and machinery by identifying root causes, reducing process variation, reducing waste, reducing over weights in the plant across all departments, thereby improving quality, improving productivity and reducing cost.  The CI Manager will be responsible for leading a team of direct reports, ensuring the development of their employees and delegation of appropriate work.

This position, by ensuring compliance with company policies and procedures, is responsible for recommending developing, implementing and managing safety, quality and food safety on all product lines.

Scope of Responsibilities

  • Identify ways to reduce production costs.
  • Identify and implement ways to improve production yields.
  • Increase efficiencies and equipment utilization.
  • Identify an implement ways to improve quality.
  • Organize, plan and improve existing production lines
  • Investigate operational problems that effect production and resolve them in a systematic methodical manner.
  • Monitors modifications and upgrades on existing processes.
  • Works with engineering and other departments to produce cost estimates for new designs.
  • Manage some capital equipment purchases and installations.
  • Plan the use of resources and scheduling activities in order to meet project objectives.
  • Coordinate projects and leads teams.
  • Provide manufacturing data.
  • Running meetings with other team members. 
  • Manage budgetary costs associated with assigned projects.
  • Work cross-functionally to collaborate and drive process improvements
  • Involved in all plant trials and new product launches.
  • Understanding and ability to analyze graphs, statistics and other complex information to estimate future manufacturing requirements and potential.
  • Consults with management, engineering and other staff regarding manufacturing capabilities, production schedules, and other considerations to facilitate production processes.
  • Makes observations and takes measurements directly, as well as collecting and interpreting data from other technical and operating staff involved.
  • Ensures the process lines work at the optimum level, to the right rate and quality of output, in order to meet supply needs.
  • Managing and leading a team

Specific Knowledge & Skills

  • Strong analytical and problem solving skills concerning PLC functions integrated controls equipment, and mechanical assemblies with the ability to drive resolution or solutions from data*
  • Proficient in data collection and analysis*
  • Ability to set priorities and to be self-disciplined and consistent*
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills*
  • Ability to develop and implement action steps and follow-up through with the people responsible for them*
  • Computer literacy in MS Office, CAD and integrated work order/inventory system*
  • Ability to develop and implement process improvement solutions*
  • Ability to identify process issues and provide solutions*
  • Must be able to work independently and act as a leader/member of a team to identify and design solutions to technical issues and to improve process control and reduce costs*
  • Ability to prepare reports, flow diagrams and charts*
  • Ability to communicate and interact well with all levels of the organization
  • Strong strategic thinking skills, driving thoughts and ideas at a global level

Education & Work Experience

  • BS degree in Electrical Engineering or Mechanical Engineering Degree, or completion of  at least two years post-secondary education, formal training in electrical theory, Statics, Strength of materials, industrial controls, SPC or equivalent combination of education and/ or experience.
  • 6-8 years hands on experience in manufacturing environment.  Designing, programming, research and development experience a plus.
  • Six Sigma Lean Green or Black Belt certification preferred

Working Conditions

  • Occasional ability to lift and carry up to 50 pounds
  • Food manufacturing environment/Office environment
  • Potential for very warm or very cold working environment/depending on area of assignment.
  • Interfacing with various manufacturing equipment and office computer equipment
  • Occasional local travel and travel to meetings/training/vendor meeting
We are an Equal Opportunity Employer.

About Ghirardelli

The Ghirardelli Chocolate Company is a manufacturer and marketer of premium chocolate products.

Incorporated in 1852 and in continuous operation ...


Benefits Overview

At the Ghirardelli Chocolate Company, we offer broad range of benefits to our exempt and non-exempt employees. These may include the following:

  • Medical/dental/vision plans
  • Flexible time off
  • Paid holidays
  • Life insurance
  • 401(k) retirement ...