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Manufacturing Cell Lead

Job ID:
Supply Chain
Covington, TN
Date posted:

The Manufacturing Cell Lead is a management professional with a good technical understanding of manufacturing, general or chemical engineering.  Cell Leads have proficient mechanical skills and display excellent personal qualities. This role provides the governance function for a cluster of semi-autonomous teams, delivering management and leadership support for performance monitoring and continuous improvement.  The Cell leads provides a common standard of communication and engagement across the factory and will liaise closely with the core factory functions. This includes Manufacturing, HR, Quality and Safety. She/he will lead project work to support factory initiatives. The Cell Lead must display excellent personal qualities and be business aware. He/she will understand the factory’s financial situation and will use this to support the team’s focus. Skills for problem solving, innovation and coaching are central to the role. Training in WCM methodologies will ensure the Cell Lead is proactive in activating and sustaining business improvements, to drive the semi-autonomous team’s work to counter losses and eradicate waste.

Leading improvement projects for operational processes, Cell Leads have a strong understanding of the end to end manufacturing process.  This includes the chemical and electro-mechanical processes and controls.  She/he is able to interpret technical diagnostics, identify key issues and process risks.  Cell Leads possess the leadership skills to act with speed and rigor.

Who You Are and What You'll Do

  • Effective mechanical skills supported by detailed knowledge of the end to end manufacturing processes relevant to their operation and endorsed Good Manufacturing Practice.  Knowledge of chemical and electro-mechanical processes and principal factory controls (eg for HPC; Spray drying, soap making, DEFI making, Batch & Continuous mixing of Liquids and Bottle, sachet, bar and pouch filling machinery); preventative maintenance schemes and condition monitoring (eg vibration analysis) and Hazardous Area Equipment and Hazards specific to operation; online/remote diagnostics to connect with category technical experts.

  • Utilize appropriate safety and environmental procedures for people, processes, materials, products and equipment to ensure a safe working environment for the whole team.  Full knowledge of hazards in the workplace.

  • Reduce costs due to waste and minimize impact to health, safety and the environment through working to eliminate waste and through the correct management of waste and hazardous materials.

  • Promote the development of a highly effective team through the establishment of a positive team climate supported by authentic leadership and clear communication. 

  • Facilitate technical improvements using WCM improvement tools.  Able to coach Technical Operators and semi-autonomous teams to build team performance.  

  • Makes governance decisions for the semi-autonomous team and adjudicates on unresolved team issues.  Sets the strategy for Continuous Improvement and Preventative Maintenance in her/his area guided by loss trends and direction provided by the Manufacturing Manager. 

  • Apply rigorous Cost Deployment and the Zero loss concept to eliminate losses. High skill level in Continuous Improvement that is aligned closely with World Class Manufacturing.

  • Identify, prioritize and address problems using appropriate tools and techniques that eliminate recurrence.

  • Apply core knowledge of Quality skills; Quality Measurement, Prioritization, Improvement, Assessment and Certification etc to sustain Quality standards in the factory operation.

  • Coordinate business resources and apply risk management processes.  Keen sense of prioritization and ability to influence change.  Resolve conflicts where identified.

  • Timely and accurate administration for a cluster of teams; shift rosters, pay, performance, training and safety.  Liaise with Sourcing Unit leads to ensure policy compliance.

  • Prepare work plans within resource constraints and review implementation to drive improvement

  • Understand the business needs for change and innovation.

What You'll Need to Succeed

  • Degree in either an Engineering discipline or a strong technical background with 2+ years of experience managing teams

  • Practical experience of applying preventative maintenance and autonomous maintenance strategies within a manufacturing or general engineering

  • Candidates must be able to analyse factory and technical processes in order to identify opportunities for performance improvement.  Strong coaching skills are a pre-requisite; enquiring, supportive, challenging.

  • Experience of operating with semi-autonomous or autonomous teams.

  • Master’s in engineering or related discipline a plus


Unilever is an organization committed to diversity and inclusion to drive our business results and create a better future every day for our diverse employees, global consumers, partners, and communities. We believe a diverse workforce allows us to match our growth ambitions and drive inclusion across the business. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, or protected veteran status and will not be discriminated against on the basis of disability.  For more information, please seeEqual Employment Opportunity Posters

Employment is subject to verification of pre-screening tests, which may include drug screening, background check, credit check and DMV check.

If you are an individual with a disability in need of assistance at any time during our recruitment process, please contact us at Please note: This email is reserved for individuals with disabilities in need of assistance and is not a means of inquiry about positions or application statuses.

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