Mechanized Equipment Development Director

DUTIES – Lead a small department engaged in developing new harvesting equipment, which either reduces the dependency on farm labor, or makes the work more attractive to the farm labor already employed.  Reports to the Vice President, Northern District.

Responsibilities:

  • Develop, build and field test prototypes
  • Manage design contracts with custom machine builders
  • Seek out, engage and manage suppliers that offer partial or complete solutions for technology driven concepts (example: vision systems and robots)
  • Prioritize and organize the activities of the department in the face of conflicting demands and limited resources.
  • Evaluate alternatives, perform appropriate cost benefit analysis and recommend solutions to minimize costs of equipment and service agreements.
  • Recruit, train and manage technicians and engineering personnel
  • Plan work schedules and assign duties to maintain adequate staff for effective performance of activities and response to fluctuating workloads
  • Coordinate with upper management on work issues

 Qualifications:

  • 5 years’ experience in a related field
  • BS in Engineering in Mechanical, Mechatronics, Agricultural, Biological Systems
  • Excellent technical writing and documentation skills
  • Hands on exposure to agricultural harvesting equipment…know how to design for tough field conditions (year round harvest)
  • Ability to work well with a variety of people including field harvest personnel
  • An organized team player with good communication skills and a positive attitude
  • Knowledge of a wide variety of software products including: Microsoft desktop products, CAD modeling (preferably Solid Works), Motion or automation control software, Linux, Python.
  • Must be able to lift up to 40 pounds out in the field
  • Must be able to walk through a vegetable field on uneven surfaces, climb up and down noisy harvesting equipment, and use both hands to perform various tasks and be willing to do so in inclement weather conditions (including wind, dust, rain, heat, cold)
  • Must be willing and able to gather machine data in the field
  • Must be willing to spend extended periods of up to three weeks in Yuma, AZ or Brawley, CA
  • Regular and consistent attendance mandatory
  • Strong analysis skills with a desire to learn new technology
  • Strong mechanical design skills
  • Thrive in a fast paced environment and handle pressure
  • Valid driver’s license and clean record
  • Work schedule will include occasional long hours including weekends and some holidays

Preferred:

  • Prior knowledge/experience with robotics and robotic control.
  • Self-motivated, creative, ability to efficiently process data.
  • Prior experience with agriculture.
  • Bilingual Spanish/English.
  • Past experience as principle designer of complete machine systems.