Job opportunities


Senior Manager, Manufacturing Engineering



Sunnyvale, CA, USA
Posted on Saturday, September 2, 2023
The Company
Astra’s mission is to Improve Life on Earth from Space® by creating a healthier and more connected planet. Today, Astra offers one of the lowest cost-per-launch dedicated orbital launch services of any operational launch provider in the world, and one of the industry’s first flight-proven electric propulsion systems for satellites, Astra Spacecraft Engine™. Astra delivered its first commercial launch to low Earth orbit in 2021, making it the fastest company in history to reach this milestone, just five years after it was founded in 2016. Astra (NASDAQ: ASTR) was the first space launch company to be publicly traded on Nasdaq.
The Opportunity
The Astra Sr. Manager, Manufacturing Engineering is a key position in leading the manufacturing engineering team in the test and production of spacecraft engines and components. This must be a transformational leader, moving Astra Manufacturing Engineering & AI&T into the future of streamlined efficiency and execution.
You will identify organizational staffing and capital requirements, develop technical/cost proposals, drive affordability, standardize procedures and processes, and work closely with other cross-functional teams, including but not limited to program management, engineering, production, and senior leadership.
This position reports to the Sr. Director of Production. The successful candidate is responsible for ensuring that all satellite manufacturing engineering and AI&T milestones are accomplished, ensuring the satellite integration space is configured and maintained to accommodate multiple product lines while meeting the assembly, integration, and test (AI&T) requirements of each satellite program. The Sr. Manager, Manufacturing Engineering manages and plans all working capital equipment for multiple product lines and keeps the factory in a working 5S condition.
Proven competence in managing day-to-day operations of a multi-team site, including task organization, staff development, cost, and schedule management. Demonstrated abilities to build diverse and inclusive teams with high levels of engagement, including mentoring and coaching, are a must.
Excellent verbal and written communication skills are required. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated success in influencing the direction of the Astra Spacecraft Engine transformational efforts in a production environment, including identifying and championing change within the organization to achieve a more competitive advantage for the business.

How You’ll Fulfill Your Mission

  • Champion and lead manufacturing engineers in true lean processes, including Kaizen/continuous improvement, material and information (M&I) flow, 5S, etc.
  • Ability to motivate and lead a work force to achieve desired goals.
  • Collaborate closely with the New Product Development and Test teams to help influence designs early in the development cycle in order to ensure good testability in a low volume manufacturing environment.
  • Lead improvement teams for Assembly processes, business processes, Assembly schedule planning, and implement lessons learned and other standards/processes as needed.
  • Manage consistency across the discipline, ensuring reuse, standardized tools, and training/skill development through all levels of the organization.
  • Develop metrics and performance calculations using production schedule metrics and inputs.
  • Responsible for coordination of manufacturing engineers for sustaining production activities and NPI.
  • Ability to identify gaps, forecast potential issues to Spacecraft integration plans and schedules, and the ability to apply root cause analysis skills.
  • Develop new methods and requirements for special tooling and test equipment.
  • Must be capable of solid partnership to ensure lockstep coordination with adjacent functions, program management, and leadership.
  • Coordinate and execute site-level initiatives with other members of the Operations Senior Leadership Team.

Why We Value You

  • 7+ years of manufacturing and systems related experience with high proficiency in technical problem solving to include decomposition, root cause analysis, solution development, implementation, and monitoring
  • 5+ years of production and manufacturing experience leading programs, projects, and personnel in space flight hardware, R&D or advanced systems/technology, and/or other space, satellite systems industries
  • Experience managing customer relations and expectations
  • Strong project management, budget management, and team leadership skills
  • Experience in process definition, development, deployment, and improvement
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal, to effectively communicate business cases and strategies to all levels of peers, suppliers, as well as program managers and executive leadership, with an ability to persuade and motivate action
  • Well organized and an innovative thinker
  • Travel will be required on an as-needed basis
  • BS/MS in Engineering, or other related technical field

Desired Multipliers

  • Master’s degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, or related technical discipline
  • Proficiency in project scheduling software, such as MS Project
  • Hands-on technical experience with spacecraft or satellite-related systems
  • Experience transitioning products from development to production
  • Experience with hardware and manufacturing organizations
  • Adept with Agile methodology, Lean Manufacturing concepts, and implementation
  • Six Sigma Green or Black Belt highly preferred
  • Knowledge of Assembly processes, integration processes, systems engineering practices, Test, quality, and configuration management systems
  • Experience working in start-up environments desired
ITAR Requirements: This position requires compliance with U.S. Government space technology trade restrictions, specifically the International Trafficking in Arms Regulations (ITAR), Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and additional regulations governing satellite, launch vehicle, missile, and other related technologies. All jobs restricted by these regulations will be contingent upon the applicant’s status as a documented U.S. Person or their ability to receive a trade license from the cognizant government agency; in addition to any required company background checks and in compliance with applicable U.S. and California laws. Similarly, positions requiring the ability to work on government contracts or a security clearance are also contingent upon the applicants ability to receive the appropriate clearance and be allowed to work on U.S. government contracts.
You do not need to match every listed expectation to apply for this position. Here at Astra, we know that diverse perspectives foster the innovation we need to be successful, and we are committed to building a team that encompasses a variety of backgrounds, experiences, and skills.
San Francisco Applicants: Astra will consider applicants with arrest and conviction records (criminal histories) in a manner consistent with the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance.