R&D Director

Job Title
R&D Director
Job ID
Director of Product Development & R&D

We are working with a plant-based company in the Bay Area that is looking for an R&D leader! Must have significant experience developing new products, particularly new food products that are new to market. A mix of experience in big CPG and a smaller start up environment is preferrable. Must be passionate, nimble, organized and have a solid understanding of innovations in the manufacturing process.
Location: This is a full time, in-person position at their Headquarters in Oakland, CA. Possibly remote once a week. Free parking onsite, vegan snacks, and unlimited PTO.
Job Responsibilities:
  • Work with Chief Technology Officer to develop next round of products and continue iteration on existing ones
  • Own the product development process end to end, prioritizing and allocating work, building and tracking timelines, KPIs, and deadlines, and identifying resource gaps and constraints
  • Establish strategies and tactical plans for each formula product
  • Manage the PD/R&D team, providing direction, feedback, and mentorship while ensuring accountability and a high-performance culture
  • Scope new roles, interview and hire additional members to the PD/R&D teams, leveraging your network to source exceptional hires
  • Validate new equipment, ingredients, products or processes through bench and pilot work
  • Work with current and new suppliers, and vendors for new innovation and CI
  • Work with QA to update master Q&A documents with new product Q&A information
  • Engage cross functionally with all departments to accomplish companywide goals

Required Skills/Qualifications:  
  • 10+ years progressive experience with project management, working closely with project leaders in engineering, research and development, manufacturing, supply chain, sourcing, sales, channel marketing, marketing communications, packaging, finance
  • Bachelor’s Degree in a related field (food science, food engineering, or related discipline
  • Significant past experience developing new food products as well as new product concept definitions, particularly with food that is new to the market.
  • 5+ years’ experience directly in R&D and product development. Plant based food experience is ideal
  • Posses a solid understanding of innovation in the manufacturing process
  • Strong planning, project management, and execution skills, and the ability to articulate where and how you have used them
  • Demonstrate data driven/analytical capability and ability to present data to leadership team
  • Monitor current and new technologies in plant based & dairy space. Preferred knowledge of fermentation, culturing, enzymatic reactions
  • Strong business acumen. Ownership mindset and strategic thinker.
  • Management experience across cross-functional teams. Start up experience a plus
  • Must be nimble, scrappy, fantastic team player, and take proactive ownership with a positive attitude
  • A person that practices humility, kindness and collaboration
  • Must be willing and able to travel domestically up to 20%  


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