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Senior Manager Lean, Biologics Operations

Location Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States Job ID R-070148 Date posted 01/06/2020

At AstraZeneca we work together across global boundaries to make an impact and find answers to challenges. We do this with the upmost integrity even in the most difficult situations because we are committed to doing the right thing. We continuously forge partnerships that help pursue world-class medicines in new ways, combining our people’s exceptional skills with those of people from all over the globe.

As a Senior Manager of Lean, Biologics Operations in Gaithersburg, MD, you’ll play a pivotal role in channeling our scientific capabilities to make a positive impact on changing patients’ lives. Operations at AstraZeneca is a truly world-class business unit. It offers one of the most exciting, fast paced, challenging and rewarding work environments in the world of operations, supply chain and manufacturing.


AstraZeneca Supply System (AZSS) is an integrated production system for how we design, manage, and continuously improve our operations and supporting business processes, enabled through the development of our people. The AZSS team is responsible for driving operational excellence in end-to-end, integrated, highly interdependent supply chain to enable transformational change in the operating systems, management systems, and mindsets, behaviors and capabilities of our people to produce product at the high quality, for the low cost, and in the short lead time.

Under the direction of the Biologics Lean Director, the Senior Manager Lean will work with leaders across various sites and functions in the organization to drive continuous improvement at the process and systems level through application of AZSS Principles utilizing the AZSS Roadmap.

Approximately 50% of the time will be spent on the shop floor providing direct, hands on support of activities, while 25% will be spent coaching leaders within Operations/Function/Region. Due to the nature of the work and diversity of sites, expected travel will be 50%.

Main Responsibilities:

  • Partner with and consult functional leaders and site leaders to develop plans and execute performance improvement activities.
  • Execute AZSS strategies (including people development) that are clearly linked to Biologics Operations and Divisional Operations outcome measures.
  • Manage end-to-end Value Chain processes and projects to drive results and realize intended business benefit
  • Utilize various Lean and Six Sigma tools and techniques in conjunction with the House of AZSS to diagnose, analyze and improve business processes
  • Provide teaching and coaching to effectively transfer Lean skills into the organization for the development of Lean Leaders
  • Collaborate and partner with all levels of the organization to systematically share knowledge as one of the means to develop others and accelerate business results
  • Promote a culture of continuous improvement and challenging the status quo, while driving departmental/regional strategies that align with AstraZeneca’s long-term strategy
  • Support teams to mitigate risk, align resources, and drive on time completion of initiatives
  • Build trust and develop new relationships with internal and external clients to effectively collaborate and achieve successful outcomes at a functional/global level.
  • Lead deep process analysis through value stream mapping to measure stagnation of inventory and information and can lead kaizen to increase capacity and improve process performance.
  • Develop visual controls and framework to make problems visible and responds with urgency to effectively break down complex problems, lead root cause analysis, and develop effective countermeasures.
  • Apply Scientific Problem Solving (8-Step) methodology to solve complex problems with multiple independent variables.
  • Lead and coach the teams through multiple target conditions to achieve an overall Operations’ challenge.

Minimum Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering or Operations Management or in a related field
  • Certified Lean Leader or equivalent
  • Minimum 6 years of hands-on experience in the application of Lean tools and techniques: standardized work, scientific problem solving, kaizen, value stream mapping, mistake proofing, SMED, level loading demand.
  • Experience analyzing Value Streams and driving process improvement
  • Excellent Analytical and Practical Problem-Solving Skills
  • Demonstrated application of behavioral, cultural and business change methodologies when realizing site and cross functional process improvement initiatives
  • Outstanding influencing, listening, coaching and project management skills
  • Ability to communicate with and influence all levels of the organization
  • Demonstrated ability to build, lead and be member of high performing teams
  • Strong business acumen with the ability to develop business case scenarios and business benefits
  • Ability to self-start AZSS related initiatives with no to little assistance from the AZSS Lead
  • Demonstrated ability to coach middle management to effectively drive change and continually improve process performance  


  • Strong exposure to Toyota Production System (TPS) methods
  • Excellent skills using IT applications to organize and analyze date (MS-Office, Minitab)
  • Exceptional presentation and group facilitation skills
  • Experience in operations management, manufacturing, or related disciplines

Next Steps – Apply today!

To be considered for this exciting opportunity, please complete the full application on our website at your earliest convenience – it is the only way that our Recruiter and Hiring Manager can know that you feel well qualified for this opportunity.  If you know someone who would be a great fit, please share this posting with them.

AstraZeneca embraces diversity and equality of opportunity. We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse team representing all backgrounds, with as wide a range of perspectives as possible, and harnessing industry-leading skills. We believe that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. We welcome and consider applications to join our team from all qualified candidates, regardless of their characteristics. We comply with all applicable laws and regulations on non-discrimination in employment (and recruitment), as well as work authorisation and employment eligibility verification requirements.

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Great culture, great work assignments, supportive management. Rotation opportunity within the company. They value inclusion and diversity.