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Sanergy is an award winning social enterprise that employs the circular economy approach to treat and convert all forms of urban waste into organic fertilizer and insect based animal protein.
We are looking for a Research and Development Manager to lead our R&D team that focuses on fast-paced research developing and scaling innovative waste management technologies.
R&D is a critical facet of Sanergy’s growth and success. In order to safely treat high volumes of waste, R&D needs to develop processes and products that can profitably convert wastes into value. Furthermore, R&D delivers value by improving existing processes and products to increase volumes, margins and quality of our products. The R&D Manager leads this team and is responsible for everything that entails, including strategy development, ownership of the early stages of the technology development and product and process specifications.
This role is responsible for all Improve R&D activities relating to established products (as of September 2020: whole BSFL, briquettes and Evergrow and will continue to grow over time).
Key duties and responsibilities:
- Setting the strategy for existing products to deliver on the organization’s financial plan with the NTCO Director and Sanergy leadership team
- Formulate and execute detailed project plans and budgets for delivering this strategy
- Delivered improvement to volume growth through improving yields and throughputs from existing processes
- Delivered improvement to the bottom line through gross margin and production cost reduction R&D-lead projects
- Ensure alignment of strategy with overall business strategy as well as actions of other internal teams
- Make recommendations at various technology “gates” to progress or kill potential products or processes
- Responsible for developing and identifying strategic partnerships and collaborations with external technology developers, including universities, companies and research institutions
- Support Sanergy’s technology strategy and lead development of the R&D project funnel
- Lead the delivery of R&D projects
- Support and input into relevant non-R&D projects
- Lead the development of project scope, timeline, budget and risk management plan
- Lead stakeholder management through stakeholder engagement, interviews, presentations and updates
- Coordinate cross-functionally for the successful implementation of a project
- Lead the prioritization of team activities
Product and process development
- Build, plan, manage and coach R&D team to:
- Conduct broad literature search to identify and shortlist potential future technologies for feasibility assessment
- Conduct desk research on shortlisted technologies to determine initial technical or economic feasibility
- Conduct lab scale research to determine refined feasibility analysis
- Conduct pilot scale research to determine feasibility of technology at larger scale and capability
- Execute research that supports the continuous improvement of existing processes
- Fully responsible for owning and developing specifications for products and processes
Execution of trials
- Leads R&D team to design, execute and analyse trials
- Ensures trial mix is consistent with project funnel
- Ensures team involves relevant stakeholders in trials, including preparation, execution, wind-down and communication of results
- Ensures trials are properly budgeted
- Support the formulation of trial protocol
- Provide input to, review and sign-off trial reports
- Fully responsible for ensuring that trials are executed as planned for by trial lead, including capability trials, in Kinanie 1 and Kinanie 2 sites
- Responsible for ensuring trials entering site have clear protocols, work instructions, sampling plans, data sheets, and any other data and supporting information for the trial execution team (Ops or R&D)
- Actively contribute to trial design, providing recommendations
- Support trial owners on determining recommendations and next steps
- Responsible for ensuring that R&D equipment and inventory is maintained, and that feedstocks, tools and reagents are in stock, ready for use
Systems and processes
- Identifies gaps in current Sanergy R&D and NTCO systems and process and puts in place processes, systems and documentation to address those gaps
- Accountable for developing effective systems to manage project funnel and key gates or decision points
- Responsible for creating internally consistent document management systems and processes that retain R&D knowledge and make that data easily accessible and known to the organisation
- Responsible for developing and maintaining internal specifications management systems and processes
- Responsible for setting up and managing all systems pertaining to effective trial execution, including but not limited to:
- Trial resource, material and space planning
- Pre-trial assessments, checklists and briefings
- Trial process flows
- Standard Operating Procedures for repeated actions like standard measurements or methodologies
- Templates and standard documentation
- Databases of results and trial specifications run
- Initiates the development of new methods and analytical tools for improving accuracy and scale trials eg more effective/accurate measurement techniques, better analytical tools/approaches
- Build relationships with other labs, universities and institutions to share and learn best practice for BSFL trial rearing and methodologies
- Assigns resource to support R&D-relevant RCAs
- Responsible for ensuring handovers of technology and products to production include clear, attainable, documented specifications
- Responsible for deciding and approving concessions to product and process out of specification
- Builds customer feedback into R&D project funnel
- Responsible for ensuring product specifications meet relevant regulations and laws
- First point of contact for Head of Operations
- Supports resolution of biology performance issues
- Provides assistance to customer-facing teams by providing key insight and direction on product offerings or limitations
- Initiate update discussions (project, team and team lead)
- Initiate feedback discussions for self and team
- Identify professional development needs of self and team and seeks opportunities for professional development, including training, coaching, mentoring and workplace activities
- Coaching and mentoring of team members and cross-functional teams
- Initiate personal development discussions
- Initiate, lead and facilitate prioritization discussions
- Share subject matter knowledge and create opportunities for team sharing
- Coach and mentor own team and cross-functionally, where required
- Lead the creation of team culture and morale within the NTCO R&D team consistent with the wider NTCO team
- Lead team performance reviews
- Responsible for career development discussions of R&D team members, and enabling their career progression
- Fully responsible for team structure and staffing strategy to deliver team expectations.
Staff reporting to the R&D Trial Lead
- All R&D Associates, Specialists, supervisors, and workmen assigned to the R&D “Improve” team
Skills & Qualifications you’ll need:
- Technical degree in science of engineering background.
- Experience with biological processes is an added advantage.
- Experience managing technical projects and teams.
- Experience with insect rearing in a production environment a plus but not a must.
Kindly submit an updated resume and cover letter by 31st May 2021 via company job page.