Continuous Improvement Manager

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Niagara Bottling
April 6, 2021
Florence, SC
Job Type


Manages the development and implementation of continuous improvement strategies in a manufacturing plant. Evaluates existing processes and identifies opportunities for quality or efficiency improvement, as well as cost-savings measures.

Essential Functions

  • Builds working relationships with the plant leadership team, Plant Director, corporate Lean Six Sigma team, and Continuous Improvement resources company-wide.
  • Play a central role in best-practice sharing across the entire manufacturing enterprise.
  • Work collaboratively with site leadership to identify initiatives and establish priorities based on corporate business objectives and corporate Lean Six Sigma team input.
  • Lead lean six sigma teams which work on projects that deliver process improvements and financially contribute to the business, leveraging the results throughout the organization.
  • Build Niagara’s Continuous Improvement & Lean / Six Sigma competencies. Continuous improvement competencies including: Six Sigma methodology, 5S, Value Stream Mapping (VSM), Kaizen, GreenBlack Belt Certification, data oriented decision-making, statistics, SPC, and related proficiencies. The Plant CI Manager leads as a manager of process, adding these competencies to their own toolbox, and fostering plant-learning and use of the same. The Plant CI Manager is expected to add to their own training and certifications every year, working to establish those competencies in the work teams around them.
  • Act as a member of the plant management team. The Plant CI Manager leads as a manager of people by supporting, and filling in duties for, more senior department managers, such as the Production Manager, Maintenance Manager and Warehouse Manager.
  • Seeks out opportunities to improve team members’ knowledge base. Helps coordinate training, education programs, and mentoring relationships.
  • Be a local change agent, pushing to continuously challenge the status quo, and find new ways to achieve Niagara’s business strategies.
  • Utilize data-driven, structured problem-solving tools, including Six Sigma to improve process capability, reduce variation and optimize performance
  • Implement appropriate visual controls to ensure lasting results, including, standard work, improvement opportunity walks and process audits


Minimum Qualifications:

    • 2 Years – Experience in Field or similar manufacturing environment
    • 0 Years – Experience in Position
    • 0 Years – Experience managing people/projects

*experience may include a combination of work experience and education

  • Strong interpersonal skills, clear communicator, and demonstrated relationship-building skills. Ability to function through influence in the absence of having positional authority.
  • Able to interact with a wide variety of contacts, both internal and external.
  • Talented influencer and team builder. Can form a team without official authority to do so, and motivate that team to accomplish self-directed goals.
  • Required travel:
    • 15% - domestic overnight travel. For some projects this could be 30% for a period of time.
  • Preferred Qualifications:
    • 4 Years – Experience in Field or similar manufacturing environment
    • 2 Years – Experience working in Position
    • 2 Years – Experience managing people/projects
  • experience may include a combination of work experience and education
  • Progressive experience in manufacturing, including roles leading others and in Production, Technical or Warehouse operations
  • Prior experience in filling, food packaging, beverage filling, high speed consumer products manufacturing, or high speed dosing preferred
  • Experience working with the implementation and oversight of improvement initiatives
  • Knowledge of Continuous Improvement, TPM / TQM, Lean, Six Sigma, or Toyota Production System methodologies & tools
  • Demonstrated project management skills on cross functional initiatives
  • Demonstrated ability to use data for creative problem solving
  • Proven success in working with people in a change program.
  • Proficiency in, but not limited to Microsoft Office Applications (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Outlook, Projects, Visio, etc.), E-Business Systems (Oracle, SAP), inventory systems (WMS, MA), Efficiency Improvement Analysis Applications (SPSS, NCSS, MiniTab) and/or New System Implementation & Administration


This position embodies the values of Niagara’s LIFE competency model, focusing on the following key drivers of success:

  • Lead Like an Owner
    • Manages a safe working environment, accurately documents safety related training, and effectively communicates safety incidents
    • Provides strategic input and oversight to departmental projects
    • Makes data driven decisions and develops sustainable solutions
    • Skilled in reducing costs and managing timelines while prioritizing long run impact over short term wins
    • Makes decisions by putting overall company success first before department/individual success
    • Leads/facilitates discussions to get positive outcomes for the customer
    • Makes strategic decisions which prioritize the needs of the customer over departmental/individual goals
  • InnovACT
    • Continuously evaluates existing programs and processes, and develops new initiatives to increase efficiency and reduce waste
    • Creates, monitors, and responds to departmental performance metrics to drive continuous improvement
    • Communicates a clear vision, organizes resources effectively, and adjusts the strategy as needed when managing change
  • Find a Way
    • Demonstrates ability to think analytically and synthesize complex information
    • Effectively delegates technical tasks to subordinates
    • Works effectively with departments, vendors, and customers to achieve organizational success
    • Identifies opportunities for collaboration in strategic ways
  • Empowered to be Great
    • Makes hiring decisions primarily based on culture fit and attitude, and secondarily based on technical expertise
    • Engages in long term talent planning
    • Provides opportunities for the development of all direct reports
    • Understands, identifies, and addresses conflict within own team and between teams


  • Minimum Required:
    • Bachelor's Degree in technical field, or
    • Associate's Degree complimented with certifications in CI disciplines
  • Preferred:
    • Bachelor's Degree in Engineering
    • Six Sigma Green or Black Belt, TPM or TPS Practitioner
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