Chief Operating Officer

Executive Birmingham, Alabama


Position at Autocar, LLC



Do you want to be the CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER at Autocar?

What will you do?  We are looking for a Lean practitioner, mission-focused, seasoned, strategic, and process-minded people leader and manager with experience in execution and scaling an organization, leading an executive and mid-level management team, and developing a lean and results oriented culture among a group of diverse individuals. The COO must be a leader and Manager who is able to help others at Autocar deliver measurable, cost-effective results that make the vision a reality. The COO oversees all internal projects and operations of the company, while driving continuous improvement and a developing a Lean culture allowing the President to focus on external matters.  The Chief Operating Officer will help execute the strategy that underpins the President and Chairman’s vision, and take the lead in implementing it. 

Key Responsibilities

  • Execute on lean operations management and continually implement and  improve lean operational processes
  • Enable through designing a framework to implement strategy into operations and manage the strategic assets of the company to enable the company to achieve the target returns on investment
  • Develop the overall business and deliver the expected results
  • Drive key change and transformation initiatives
  • Bring business model innovation enhancements to shape the future of the business
  • Manage, train, recruit and develop the people needed for delivery

Operations Management

  • Manage operating processes within the value chain (including alignment of support functions)
  • Manage infrastructure and interfaces within the value chain
  • Budget planning and allocation (e.g., make-or-buy decisions)
  • Maintain transparent cost monitoring and reporting
  • Set up appropriate performance targets, monitoring of progress and KPI reporting to leadership
  • Maintain and monitor staffing and training to meet financial, quality and customer expectations
  • Manage operational risk (including controls)


Operational Processes


  • Implement and execute the "symbol" and six Sigma lean principles throughout the organization
  • Continuously  improve first time Quality throughout the organization
  • Increase operational agility (e.g., flexibility of the value chain)
  • Optimization across silos (i.e., value chain optimization)
  • Align resources and find synergies within operations
  • Increase efficiency (e.g., integrated supply chain management, profitability and cost improvement, working capital management)
  • Improve contribution of support functions to operations
  • Implement appropriate reward and recognition models
  • Leverage innovation and technological improvement
  • Improve vendors base first time quality with our expectations


Implement Strategy into Operations

  • Set up appropriate organizational structures
  • Derive goals for business units from the vision and strategy
  • Design operating model and implement to achieve strategic goals
  • Implement operating systems, establishing and implementing operating policies, directives, procedures and KPIs to support corporate strategy
  • Assist support functions (HR, IT, etc.) in setting up procedures that link to corporate strategy
  • Translate strategic C-suite goals into a tangible working reality for employees


Manage Strategic Assets

  • Design manufacturing footprint
  • Own intellectual property (including setting up strategy and processes to generate, identify and secure intellectual property)
  • Create pipeline of suitable lean minded  talent: influencing attraction and retention
  • Mentor, coach and facilitate key talent within operations for the lean six Sigma symbol process
  • Align resources and talent management agenda
  • Implement appropriate models for rewards and recognition of staff implementing coaching and corrective practices as needed
  • Support brand management and creation of reputation by delivering products and services of highest quality
  • Continuously enforce the value system of the company (e.g., leading by motivation and engagement, “walk the talk“)


Drive Key Change and Transformation Initiatives

  • Build commitment among stakeholders by using “their language” and inspiring them
  • Set up clear objectives and key measures of change in the context of various cultural and corporate specifications
  • Create a clear plan with transparent outline of benefits
  • Manage skills and transformational activity alignment (e.g., matching of talent to change initiatives)
  • Design and implement the right behaviors according to the key area of change
  • Shape the company culture


Shape the Future of the Business

  • Ability to proactively share and discuss strategic options (e.g., organic growth, M&A)
  • Innovate existing business model by linking market developments back to operations
  • Ability to articulate the corporate vision to the key stakeholders, using language relevant to their function
  • Challenge C-suite and Chairman opinions, while also being a trusted advisor
  • Discuss operational readiness
  • Create a framework for the companies’ innovation processes (e.g., by engaging workforce, clients and suppliers)
  • Portfolio alignment
  • Entrepreneurial and flexible approach towards challenges
  • Ensure usage of enabling technologies and workflows


Required Skills

  • “Walk the talk” lean practitioner that has experience transforming operations into lean high quality operations.
  • Detailed knowledge of internal processes and procedures, product and service offerings, demand and supply situation
  • Detailed understanding of lean operations role in business transformations
  • End-to-end understanding of the value drivers of the company
  • Knowledge of budgeting, costing and accounting principles relevant to the industry and market in which the organization operates
  • Knowledge of cost-efficient sourcing and logistics strategies, suitable production systems, sustainability and ethical standards
  • Knowledge of lean continuous improvement measures and processes, supplier assessments and benchmarking tools to measure against peers
  • Knowledge of (technological and IT) trends and best practices in the sector
  • Knowledge of the complete value chain, related processes and procedures and the strategic decision-making processes
  • Knowledge of the company’s human capital and operating capabilities
  • Knowledge of governance, risk, compliance and legal issues relevant in the market
  • Knowledge of management, protection and building of brand
  • Knowledge of change management techniques and pitfalls, strategic and operational planning and alternative and innovative communication methods to reach consensus
  • Knowledge of business modeling and design thinking and innovation management best practices
  • Understanding of key geographic and macroeconomic issues, analytical and predictive models and the various dimensions of different operating models (operational strategy, governance, process, technology, organizational design, performance)
  • Situational leadership skills with regards to different target groups
  • Cultural expertise
  • Practical understanding of people management implications during change and transformation projects
  • Marketing knowledge (regarding new products)


Required Qualifications

  • At least 5 years experience as COO in a Lean manufacturing environment
  • Demonstrable competency in transforming organizations to lean principles, and management of large diverse staff and strategic planning
  • Proven track record of executing organization Change Plans and delivery of results
  • Working knowledge of data analysis and performance/operation metrics
  • Outstanding organizational management and leadership abilities to deliver results
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Aptitude in decision-making and problem-solving
  • Comfortable with constant change
  • Strategic mindset and planning capabilities
  • Very strong lean management skills


Who are we?  Autocar is the only American truck manufacturer focused on trucks for severe-duty vocational applications. But above all, Autocar is focused on our customers:  Our truck helps our customers to be more successful and to achieve their challenging objectives.

Autocar’s hundreds of customers include every national waste-hauling fleet, major cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Houston, Miami, and Charlotte, and many of the largest retailers and freight handlers in North America.

As the industry's technology and innovation leader, Autocar has forged strong partnerships with the leading suppliers in the business, including, Allison, Cummins, ArvinMeritor, Hendrickson among others, and has delivered more natural gas vehicles than all of our competitors combined. 

Autocar is the oldest motor vehicle manufacturer in the United States and built America's first truck, in 1899. A proudly American-owned company, Autocar is headquartered in Hagerstown, Indiana and is affiliated with GVW Group, based in Highland Park, Illinois.

What does it take to be a part of our team?

  • CHARACTER: We look for people with integrity, honesty, loyalty, humility, and who do not engage in internal politics.
  • PROACTIVE:  You are a doer, self-made and have led big changes.
  • RESULTS DRIVEN: You are a “finisher”, get things done, and like to win.
  • ENTERPRISING:  You think outside the box, can work in agile, unstructured environments and don’t reinvent the wheel.
  • GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE: You have a global view resulting from work with sophisticated international companies.
  • SENSE OF URGENCY: You act with the realization that efficiency is vital to success.
  • HIGHLY COLLABORATIVE: Collaboration is the fuel of our business, whether it is between employees, partners or customers. You are a driving force for continued efficiency among everyday tasks and a necessity for improving the outcomes of business activities.


Where will you work? The Chief Operating Officer will be based in Birmingham Alabama.


What do we offer in benefits? We offer an attractive compensation and benefits package, to include base salary, incentive bonus opportunities, and benefits such as medical/dental/vision options, 401K plan, etc.