Are you an experienced, design leader who enjoys rolling up your sleeves and making a significant impact for the company you work for and the people you touch with your solutions? Northern Tool + Equipment is looking for an Industrial Design Director to join our growing development team and lead our design future from the ground up. We’re looking for a “player / coach” that is adept at creating designs themselves but also has the experience and vision to strategically build the design function over time. If this sounds like you, see the qualifications below and send us your resume and portfolio today!
PRIMARY OBJECTIVE OF POSITION:
To develop innovative new product solutions that resonate with future and existing customers in regard to product appearance, features, and ease of use. The resulting goal is to deliver a superior customer experience and build brand equity through the creation and management of a Visual Brand Language (VBL) for NTE brands. Through strategic partnership with product management and cross-functional engineering, the Industrial Design Director will be instrumental in developing design process methodology and delivering product solutions which fulfill customer needs, manufacturing and engineering requirements, and are on-time and on-budget.
MAJOR AREAS OF ACCOUNTABILITY:
Cultivates innovation by leveraging market, trend, and user research to creatively solve customer needs, define visual direction, and create key product attributes across NTE’s product lines.
Creates, documents, and maintains NTE’s Visual Brand Language and insures adherence to this methodology for both internal and external development.
Responsible for successful leadership and hands-on execution of all industrial design deliverables for new product development. This includes sketches, renderings, CAD models, and prototypes, where applicable.
Collaborates with other new product development teams to create feasible solutions that meet both customer and brand aspirations as well as cost, development schedule, and manufacturing objectives.
Defines the look and feel of key product interfaces (UI) to best serve the needs of target users.
Partners with product management and advanced product development teams to create innovative product solutions that will result in increased market share, revenue, and potential intellectual property.
Leverages industry best practices to user-test innovation concepts for customer acceptance and commercial viability.
Responsible for industrial design visualizations to communicate key design intent and features to NTE leadership, vendors, and customers. This could include sketches, renderings, CAD models, VR simulations and physical prototypes where appropriate.
Provides strategic input and participates in the customer research process to glean new insights to meet articulated and non-articulated customer needs.
Employs published ergonomic data to improve user intuitiveness and ease-of-use of all product user interfaces.
Responsible for external design partner selection and management. Creates scope of work documentation, evaluates proposal methodology, and ensures schedule adherence and deliverable quality for NTE.
Manages internal industrial design resources. Responsible for ensuring the quality of work and adherence to project schedules.
Responsible for the future recruitment and development of ID team members.
Manages ID cost center budget. Participates in annual budget planning process and ensures departmental financial goals and objectives are met.
Selects and curate’s innovative software and tools to best collaborate with internal and external colleagues, expediently share ideas, and enhance creative productivity.
Keeps supervisor informed of important developments, potential problems, and related information necessary for effective management. Coordinates and communicates plans and activities with others, as appropriate, to ensure a coordinated work effort and team approach.
Performs related work as apparent or assigned.
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
BS or BFA in Industrial Design from an accredited four-year college or university
At least 10 years of design experience – preferably in tools, hardware, or agricultural products
A minimum of 3 years of supervisory experience
Design portfolio must be included with resume for consideration
Relentless creative mindset that strives for continuous, incremental and break-through improvement through a persistent attitude of “How might we?...”
Demonstrated strategic thinker who has developed and documented successful design processes and strategies
Demonstrated proficiency in communicating industrial design strategy and proposals to all levels of the organization
Ability to provide stimulating creative leadership to internal and external ID teams
Demonstrated excellence in design skills such as sketching, rendering, modeling, CAD, and VR technology tools
Demonstrated, excellent interpersonal skills, including written and verbal communication
Demonstrated thorough understanding of customer research and a direct correlation to successfully commercialized solutions
Ability to give and take constructive criticism and critique
Demonstrated success in partnering with cross-functional development teams to see concepts through to production success
Demonstrated, thorough understanding of a wide variety of manufacturing materials and processes
Demonstrated thorough understanding of engineering principles and design constraints
Mastery of PC applications for design, drawing and communication
Demonstrated mastery of strategically managing multiple projects simultaneously
Demonstrates Northern Tool + Equipment’s 12 Core Competencies
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Frequently required to sit, use hands to handle objects and talk or hear.
Frequent wrist and/or hand movement is required.
Occasionally required to stand, walk and reach with hands and arms.
Must occasionally lift and/or move up to 10 pounds.
Specific vision abilities required include close vision, distant vision and the ability to adjust focus.
May require minimal travel of less than 10%