Date Posted
25 Sep 2019
Cobham is seeking a Supplier Development Manager who will define, develop, and manage best practice strategic supplier qualification, risk assessment, risk mitigation, and supplier development programs to drive material and component on-time delivery, competitive cost structures, and robust supplier quality control. This position is located in Davenport, IA.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Enhance Procurement’s contribution by adding high-value capabilities that are shared across the organization and encourage best-practice techniques and systems.
  • Serve as a technical and process communication liaison among strategic suppliers and our supply chain, manufacturing, engineering, and quality teams to help ensure that issues are clearly understood and effectively resolved. Ensure robust collaborative strategies are developed and action plans are in place to support our suppliers achieving Cobham’s quality, cost and delivery goals.
  • Engage and collaborate with suppliers to improve performance and optimize processes (Lean / 6 Sigma).
  • Ensure uninterrupted and efficient flow of optimal quality materials, products, and services utilizing dock-to-stock (supplier to point of use), certified strategic suppliers such as Designated Supplier Quality Representatives (DSQR), vendor managed inventory (VMI), and Supply Chain pull systems.  
  • Participate in strategic supplier selection (on-boarding), consolidation, risk management, and removal.  Determine what suppliers to grow, maintain, develop, or off-board.
  • Establish and maintain a Designated Supplier Quality Responsibility program.  Certify supplier’s employees to inspect parts and materials driving conformance and compliance requirements with the goal of zero defects.
  • Establish and develop partnership relationships with our supplier base. Lead and facilitate effective two-way communication, training, and regular site visits with strategic suppliers. Meet and discuss performance metrics to provide performance feedback.
  • Introduce formal supplier and Cobham training to drive consistency in process, including supplier continuous improvement, error proofing and lean.  
  • Appraise vendor manufacturing ability through on-site visits and measurements.
  • Develop and create strategic supplier training programs, supplier development processes, presentations and procedures.
  • Provide technical support for suppliers as needed to perform direct and root cause analysis (DMAIC or equivalent process).
  • Facilitate and / or collaborate with Cobham organizations and suppliers supporting Advanced Component Quality Planning (ACQP), Control Plan Methodology (CPM), Corrective Actions / Preventative Actions (CAPAs), Continuous Improvement (CI), Statistical Process Control and Process Capability (SPC), Design of Experiments (DOE), and the DMAIC process or equivalent supporting root cause analysis.
  • Design, develop, and maintain a supplier scorecard process to monitor delivery performance, responsiveness, and quality performance. Measure suppliers’ compliance and conformance meets Cobhams’ drawings, specifications, procedures and standards.
  • Analyze information about supplier performance or procurement program success and make recommendations to Supply Chain and Quality Organizations.
  • Prepares and makes presentations to suppliers, customers, employees, and all levels of the management team.
  • Participates in a teamwork approach to achieving goals with particular emphasis on eliminating waste contributing to an increase in process cycle times.
  • Provides technical leadership, training, and support to employees, manufacturing teams, Quality teams, supply chain teams, strategic suppliers, and peers.
  • Design or implement supply chains that support business strategies adapted to changing market conditions, new business opportunities, or cost reduction strategies.
  • Travel up to 25%
  • All other related duties as assigned.


Minimum Requirements:

  • BS/BA degree in Engineering, Supply Chain, Industrial Management, Science, Business, or equivalent.
  • 10-15 years Aerospace experience in Quality, Engineering, Manufacturing, Operations, or related Business Operations working with products or processes.
  • 5+ years’ Aerospace experience working directly with suppliers to improve quality and on-time-delivery
  • 2+ years’ supervising or managing staff
  • This position requires access to technology, materials, software or hardware that is controlled by export laws of the US.  In order to be eligible you must be either a US Citizen or Permanent Resident 

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Six Sigma Black Belt or Green Belt certification
  • PMP Project Management
  • Understanding of Supply Chain Management practices as well as automated and manual procurement systems
  • APICS certification. Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP)
  • Demonstrated ability to establish credibility, develop relationships, and collaborate with suppliers
  • Familiar with Lean principles such as Value Stream Mapping, Just-In-Time (JIT), Demand Flow, Single Piece Flow, 5S, Visual Management, Total Productive Maintenance, Continuous Improvement Process, Kaizen, SPC, Six Sigma and Statistical Problem Solving
  • Ability to lead, innovate, motivate, mitigate risk, and develop employees
  • Ability to manage conflict across multiple roles and teams
  • Familiar with engineering configuration control systems
  • Understanding of manufacturing processes.
  • Strong understanding of quality systems, corrective action planning (8D), supplier corrective actions (SCARs), corrective actions (CARs), Statistical process control (SPC).
  • Process-management skills and ability to create project plans.
  • Working knowledge of incoming quality inspection
  • Effective communication (verbal and written) skills for both internal and external customers.
  • Strong presentation and organization skills.
  • Strong project management skills (Gantt and PERT charts).
  • Strong problem-solving skills (DOE, DMAIC, Fish Bone, process maps, SIPOC).
  • Effective organizational, prioritizing, time management, problem solving, and interpersonal skills.
  • Basic understanding of MRP
  • Intermediate skills utilizing Excel, Word, and PowerPoint programs 
 For more information regarding the Davenport facility and products manufactured there, please visit the below links:
Cobham's values of Trust, Talent and Technology have driven us from our launch in 1934 by Sir Alan Cobham, an aviation innovator, to becoming a global leader in state-of-the-art aerospace and defense systems. And it’s the insights of our innovators today that will secure our collective future. Innovators like you.
Cobham is one of the world's leading companies engaged in the development, delivery and support of leading-edge aerospace and defense systems in the air, on land and at sea. Our clients and partners trust Cobham to deliver the mission-critical technology they need, and we trust our employees to draw on their ingenuity and passion to deliver those solutions. This leads to an empowering culture for our people. Our Leadership team is open, sharing plans for the next five years, driving retention by offering demanding, exciting work, and providing full guidance and mentoring.
Cobham is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and embraces diversity in our employee population.  It is the policy of Cobham to provide equal opportunity to all qualified applicants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, protected veteran status, or genetic information. Cobham will refrain from discharging, or otherwise discriminating against, employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants.
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Cobham Mission Systems
Natalie Dolan
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