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Director of Automation Engineering

JB Poindexter & Co

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Posted on 01/31/2024




JB Poindexter & Co., Inc. (JBPCO)is a privately held, diversified manufacturing company forecasting $2.4B in annual revenue and 8,000 team members in 2023. The nine operating subsidiaries, covering over 50 locations, are engaged in the production of commercial truck bodies, step-vans, utility trucks, funeral coaches, limousines, electric and alternative fuel vehicles, pickup truck bed enclosures, precision machining, and expandable foam plastic packaging. For more information, visit .

Position Overview:

The Director, Automation Engineering will create and execute the strategic vision for the automation of the production processes within JBPCO business units. The successful candidate will be an established engineering, manufacturing, and/or technical sales leader with a proven track record of delivering results across multiple facilities through automation. Strategic capabilities are a must, as well as being hands-on and comfortable with tactical execution. The Director will develop and oversee processes related to asset reliability, project management, capital investment, productivity programs, and continuous improvement initiatives.

Major Duties & Responsibilities

Essential Job Functions:

  • Develop strategies and initiatives to quickly leverage improvements across the enterprise through the strategic design and deployment of equipment and procedures to aid the successful rollout of automation in the plants.
  • Act as a change agent to lead change and drive technical innovation within individual plants and across the enterprise.
  • Work cross functionally, at all levels in the organization, to gain buy-in and ensure successful implementation of strategies and initiatives.
  • Evaluation of current production processes and identification of opportunities to improve safety, quality, productivity, and cost structure.
  • Conduct studies to uncover and address production efficiency issues and propose/test solutions while ensuring volume and mix flexibility.
  • Identify and qualify automation vendors providing external designs and building equipment.
  • Lead and develop a system acquisition process starting with vendor evaluation and request for proposal through the system build, acceptance testing, and ramp to rate.
  • Prepare concept layouts and drawings and document design processes and solutions.
  • Lead complex system tests and prepare reports.
  • Improve labor and space efficiency and cost effectiveness while continually addressing safety, including ergonomics.
  • Identify opportunities to standardize common processes across business units to achieve and benefit from economies of scale.
  • Lead training efforts across the enterprise to enable manufacturing operations to be self-sufficient at running, maintaining, and modifying automation systems.
  • Champion standardized Task based Risk Assessment in accordance with the Association for Advancing Automation to ensure full compliance within JBPCO.
  • Work with maintenance on policies/procedures – spare parts.
  • Lead and train the business units on automation electrical and safety standards.
  • Verification and validation that external and internal electrical standards are adhered to on new projects and modifications to existing equipment. (To include drawings, tagging, egress, etc.)
  • Lead training and guide conversations around electrical communication flow diagrams to help cross functional team conversations.

Minimum Skills & Abilities


  • The ideal candidate will have excellent electrical / controls engineering skills with programming and mechanical capability and knowledge.
  • Experience with various types of automation, automation vendors, and automation applications.
  • Successful implementation of automation within a traditionally manual manufacturing environment.
  • Ability to communicate and build rapport with personnel at all levels in a manufacturing environment.
  • Experience in a high-volume, complex manufacturing environment.
  • Understanding of manufacturing design elements/tools/systems, processes, regulatory requirements.
  • Understanding of design principles such as Data Analysis, DOE, FMEA, DFM/DFA.
  • Must possess excellent automation/electrical/controls aptitude.
  • Solid understanding of computer programming and software development.
  • Understanding of electrical standards for US, Canada, and Mexico

Minimum Education & Experience


A Bachelor’s degree in Electrical/Controls or Mechanical Engineering from an accredited college/university is required. Master’s is preferred.

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