Senior Development Manager - Innovation


Manage complex and innovative projects including the product development process by working directly with Adidas sourcing and Tier 1 counterparts. Support Business Units and directly interact with Tier 2 supply partners. Provide an effective transition of product design/development ideas into innovative prototypes. Provide effective transition of technical footwear designs from prototyping into production while monitoring manufacturability, material selection, quality standards, bill of material and the development schedule. Pro-actively provide develop materials/process solutions, which support the creative material direction and enable commercial success. Drive material concept innovation in the respective focus area.

Key Responsibilities – project and process management:

  • Manage complex and innovative projects or complex and technically challenging products across different functions and Business Units.
  • Proactively research new technologies and materials to drive innovation and communicate to Design , Marketing and Futures on new potential development options
  • Drive new and innovative footwear designs, components, processes, materials and concepts into a manufacturable and marketable finished product
  • Plan and manage development calendars, manage external partner for "stand-alone" product categories.
  • Specify new processes or standards for Footwear Operations based on Brand Operations Footwear strategy
  • Develop guidelines and handbooks on these processes/standards and manage their roll-out and implementation across all functions and BUs / Categories
  • Act as the x-functional/cross-BU/Category Business Champion/Go-to person for a specific topic (e.g. midsole compounds, Seamless constructions, PU prints, etc.)
  • Actively develop and maintain a platform for sharing expert knowledge with the x-functional teams and across different BUs
  • Develop, train and educate x-functional teams across BUs on Business Champion topics
  • Guide and mentor team members

Professional content:

  • Take ownership for the entire development process for assigned, innovative and technical products, with an emphasis on quality product development and timely completion of all tasks in accordance with the applicable product creation calendar.
  • Translate category vision and consumer needs into products which support the Business Units' product strategy.
  • Ensure that new projects are engineered to cost targets.
  • Engineer advanced technical prototypes that address desired function, aesthetic, market appeal and manufacturability within cost targets. Emphasize innovative use of components, materials, construction and execution of design where applicable to product. Review prototypes for quality, execution, and fit.
  • Ensure that all materials, processes and development samples are fully tested to ensure adherence to Reebok quality standards
  • Establish and maintain strong working relationships with Business Units, Design, Marketing, Materials Development and Supply Chain, Quality, Costing, Logistics and Sourcing Organization, managing designated projects to ensure an on time performance.
  • Support and guide Developers within the team in all aspects of Development related questions.
  • Manage the direct development process between HQ and Tier1 partners in a collaborative, effective and result oriented manner to achieve optimum results.

Key Relationships:

  • Tier 1 supply partners
  • Tier 2 supply partners
  • Marketing
  • Design
  • Futures
  • Material Development
  • Costing Department
  • Sourcing
  • Fit and Wear Test Department
  • Quality Assurance
  • Supply Chain Management

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Ability to apply technical understanding to all FW development categories and be the contact person for complex cross-category questions
  • Expert knowledge in several areas of the product creation process (FW construction, technology, manufacturing, material construction, sourcing etc.)
  • Broad knowledge in the remaining areas of the product development process
  • Ability to provide (technical) training in footwear engineering and product development to the whole development team; sourcing, technical and materials knowledge required
  • Ability to create plans and deliver presentations.
  • Ability to coach and train teams
  • Effective communication and negotiation skills
  • Understanding of the respective vision and strategy for the brands. Ability to communicate to LO/OC/T1 the vision and strategy as well as success criteria needed from sourcing and T1 teams
  • Fluent in English (written and spoken), Chinese speaker is an advantage.
  • Ability to understand 2D and 3D images.
  • Strong IT skills ( MS office, PDM/PLM, CAD, Illustrator, Photoshop)
  • Ability to anticipate problems and develop solutions through to resolution
  • Ability to cope with change, make decisions and act comfortably with risk and uncertainty
  • Travel, domestic and international as required by business needs
  • Strong understanding of costing principles and ability to negotiate as required
  • Ability to work independently under minimal guidance on several projects simultaneously while adhering to a specified deadline.
  • Advanced skill at problem solving and continual innovation. Ability to interpret design intent and offer alternative solutions. Ability to apply advanced technical knowledge to product development. Ability to demonstrate a sense of style, creativity and color to work with designer in accomplishing a point of view.
  • Ability to effectively interact with different departments, Liaison Offices and with manufacturing partners via phone, written communication and in person.
  • Ability to analyze complex problems and to provide customized solutions

Requisite Education and Experience / Minimum Qualifications:

  • Four-year college or university degree with emphasis on footwear technology and/or manufacturing
  • Minimum 10+ years of progressive work experience in the athletic footwear industry, specializing in product development, material development, or product testing.
  • Proven record of accomplishment in the field of footwear development.
  • Exposure to the latest in materials, components, processes, and concepts
  • Expert knowledge about materials, textile manufacturing and footwear manufacturing


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