Share this Job

Chief Manufacturing Engineer

Date: Jul 23, 2022

Location: Portsmouth, GB

Company: GKN Aerospace Careers

About GKN Aerospace

Join us and keep the world moving, a great place to work needs a great way of working!


A Truly Global Business

Every day, around the world, we help aircrafts fly further, faster and greener.  We’re the world’s leading tier one aerospace supplier of systems and components. With over 15,000 employees across 41 manufacturing sites in 13 countries serving over 90% of the world’s aircraft and engine manufacturers with sales of £2.8bn.


Together as “one GKN” we’re moving our business and industry forward developing technologies that rapidly decarbonise aircraft, and innovating to help build a new generation of planes that produce zero emissions.  We’re putting sustainability at the heart of what we do; driving our objective to becoming a net zero greenhouse gas emissions business before 2050!


Making a Difference

It’s great to know you’re making a difference to the future of aviation! Whatever part you play you’ll be helping us deliver operational excellence to our customers.


Sitting across our three business lines; Civil, Defence and Engines at our East Cowes manufacturing plants you’ll do just that. Established in 1901, one of our older production sites with a workforce of circa 800 employees. Our East Cowes plants, Isle of Wight are where we design, manufacture, test and repair high performance structures and systems. We have two facilities on the Island; Falcon Yard, Ferry Road and Osborne Site, Saunders Way. Both locations employ the company’s distinct competencies in major assemblies and composite structures for the global aerospace market. Our customer base includes Airbus, Astronics, BAE Systems, Boeing, Bombardier Aerospace, Cessna, Cobham, Honeywell, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, Rolls Royce and Triumph

Job Summary

The Chief Manufacturing Engineer will be based at our Portsmouth Defence site with monthly national travel to our Cowes and Luton sites and annual international travel to the US and the Netherlands, there is flexibility for occasional working from home dependent on the needs of the business.


The Chief Manufacturing Engineer (CME) is responsible for leading the development and maintenance of the manufacturing definition (system) and Manufacturing Engineering (ME) related activities within the Program through its lifecycle. The CME leads the multi-functional Manufacturing Engineering (ME) team that is deployed into the Program as the primary representative for ME at all program / technical reviews & externally (with customer & suppliers). The CME ensures the manufacturing system meets stakeholder requirements including; technical compliance; adherence to Zero Defect Manufacturing (ZDM) standards and compliance business case (including quality; delivery and cost).

Job Responsibilities

  • CME’s develop technical solutions to complex problems and deliver a manufacturing system that fulfils all stakeholder requirements including; Safety, Logistics, Quality, Productbility & Business case
  • Responsible for technical leadership of manufacturing system development and integration for production.  Resolve issues pertaining to vendor schedule and/or quality
  • Leadership of deployed manufacturing engineering team; accountable to the Program Manager(s) for delivering Program technical objectives
  • Build a Process Control mind-set within the deployed engineering team and ensure compliance to Zero Defect Manufacturing (ZDM) standards
  • Accountable for product development, new product quotes, tool fabrication quotes, first article development, configuration changes that involve cost estimation, schedule coordination, build process definition, and implementation
  • Supports Make v Buy activities
  • Responsible for the implementation of tooling and or production planning, from original concept through to production
  • Design these processes with a high degree of process capability utilizing the GKN standard ZDM tool suite to demonstrate as such
  • Lead engineering teams to deliver measurable, metrics driven results in line with Program goals
  • Responsible for training and maintaining the ME team to GKN ME standards
  • Maintain positive, team relationships with internal and external customers, as well as co-workers
  • Continuously improve production processes by implementing Lean initiatives
  • Support the Design Chief Engineers on their technical reviews (internal & external)  as required
  • Continuously improve production processes by implementing Lean initiatives
  • Exemplifying a safety-first mind-set and ensuring compliance with the GKN Aerospace Health, Safety and Environmental policies and standards

How You'll Contribute

To help us make a difference, you’ll bring your passion and talent for what you do along with the following skills, experience, qualifications and attributes:



A BEng or equivalent in Aerospace, Mechanical, Electrical or Chemical Engineering
Extensive manufacturing engineering experience gained from a manufacturing environment
Experience of influencing stakeholders and establishing effective working relationships within a global organisation
Experience of managing new product process introduction (industrialisation) 
Experience of managing existing production process improvements
LEAN processes and practices experience
Quality system models experience such as ISO9000, AS9100 or D1-9000


Project and/or Programme Management professional qualification
Project and/or Programme Management experience
Aerospace industry experience
Experience of AS-9145 Zero Defect Manufacturing or equivalent automotive PPAP experience 
Experience of statistics and statistical process control (SPC)
Advanced competency with Microsoft Office tools including Excel

What We'll Offer

Once you’re on board you’ll get the following perks and benefits:

  • £48,000 to £70,000 per annum dependent on experience
  • £5,500 car allowance per annum
  • Hybrid working – giving you the opportunity to balance home and office working
  • Industry Leading Pension Scheme = we’ll match your contributions up to 8% on a 1 : 1.5 basis
  • Life Assurance 8 x salary
  • 25 days holiday + bank holidays
  • 9 day working pattern; every second Friday off
  • Income protection
  • Shopping discounts
  • Cycle To Work Scheme
  • Employee Assistance Programme
  • A collaborative, dynamic working environment 
  • Opportunity to earn up to 22.5% bonus 

As well as a competitive package we’ll offer you a world of opportunity. We want to see your career fly!  We’ll support your career progression by providing you with learning and development opportunities.  That’s the beauty of being part of a global business, once you’re on board you never know where you career journey may take you! 

We are looking for people who want to make a difference, talented members with the skills and passions to become the best of the future in what they do. The Chief Manufacturing Engineer will be a quality focused professional with excellent communication and influencing skills as well as flexibility to travel as required. 

Why Join Us


A Great Place to work needs a Great Way of Working
Everyone is welcome to apply to GKN.  Through our commitment to diversity, inclusion and belonging and by living our five powerful principles we’ve created a culture where everyone feels welcome to contribute.  It’s a culture that won us ‘The Best Workplace Culture Award’ last year.  By embracing and celebrating what makes us unique we encourage everyone to bring their full self to work. We’re also committed to providing an accessible recruitment process, so if you require reasonable adjustments at any stage during our recruitment process please get in touch and let us know.


Hybrid Work Approach
We understand our employees thrive by working differently, what works for one may not work for another, offering different ways of working is core to us creating a great employee experience. We’re pleased to provide a hybrid working approach enabling you to balance your time between working remotely and working in our offices.  We’re also keen for our employees to achieve a work life balance so we’re happy to discuss flexible working options with you should the role be able to accommodate it. 


Join us and keep the world moving … click on the link below to apply