Director, Operations

Job Locations US-CA-Thousand Oaks
Supply Chain & Op Excellence
Regular Full-Time

Job Description

Position Summary
This role is responsible for developing and effectively deploying an operational excellence program for Atara. This position creates, coordinates, and drives all aspects of the deployment of the operational excellence strategy.  This role is a key contributor to the development and implementation of a corporate operational excellence program to achieve excellence in the end to end commercial, clinical, and across corporate value streams.   

Work Location:                   
Thousand Oaks, CA

Reports to:                           Sr Director, Operations

Primary Responsibilities

  • Work with Senior Director, Executive and Senior Leadership Teams at Atara to create a strategic vision and road map for the implementing the operational excellence program
  • Collaborate with functional leadership teams to develop an implementation strategy and plan for developing a continuous improvement culture and management system
  • Lead large scale change management initiatives across geographies using a best practice framework while creating or re-engineering systems and processes
  • Create, maintain, and deliver training to support the advancement of operational excellence at Atara
  • Provide coaching and mentoring at all levels of the organization in operational excellence
  • Lead comprehensive analysis, simulation, and other methodologies to support optimal efficiency and quality
  • Generate and interpret reports on performance to support effective planning, risk management, scenario planning and operational execution across Atara organizations
  • Support cross-functional integration by facilitating process improvements and re-designs for business optimization
  • Support program governance reviews by senior leadership by preparing performance summaries
  • Support development of Enterprise Services organization by maturing Facilities & Engineering and Environmental Health & Safety programs
  • Provide direct support to senior level leadership and functional leadership as needed


 Additional Functions and Responsibilities

  • Demonstrate strong leadership and communication skills to work across functions and influence to facilitate execution of key projects and initiatives aligned with Atara’s Mission.
  • Be flexible to support different initiatives, drive results, and deliver on projects in different areas of Atara’s business, spanning from tactical to strategic programs in any capacity.

 Travel:              Travel required (up to 50%).


Education and Professional Experience:

  • At least 5 years of continuous improvement experience and at least 2 years of experience in an internal and/or external consulting role
  • At least 10 years of experience across multiple disciplines such as commercial sales, business development, research and development, process sciences, operations, supply chain or quality
  • Bachelor’s degree in business or scientific discipline or work experience equivalent; Master’s preferred
  • Professional background and experience in Facilities & Engineering (F&E) or Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) is preferred
  • Lean and/or Six Sigma certification preferred.

 Position Requirements:

  • Strong communication skills (e.g., clear and concise), team player, and proven negotiation skills
  • Solid understanding of continuous improvement, program and project management and associated business processes with experience leading business transformations
  • Technical proficiency includes demonstrated proficiency in continuous improvement (e.g. Value Stream Mapping, Kaizen, Process Mapping, SIPOC, Metrics, 5S, Standard Work, A3s, etc)
  • Demonstrated ability to provide effective program leadership in terms of working with senior leadership to develop a network strategy and roadmap
  • Proven track record of planning and leading programs and projects as well as a project portfolio
  • Strong organizational skills and the ability to multitask; can set priorities and follow a timeline
  • Strong analytical problem solving: Able to identify problems; apply structured and disciplined methodology to identify root cause
  • Must be a self-starter, collaborates cross-functionally, and can work independently with minimal functional oversight
  • Ability to effectively operate across different cultures with strong stakeholder management and influencing skills
  • Extremely proficient written and verbal communication skills with experience presenting to multiple levels of an organization
  • Role model for Atara’s values

More about Atara Bio

We launched Atara Biotherapeutics in August 2012 to help patients with serious diseases and few therapeutic options. We’re named after Atara Ciechanover who suffered from cancer before passing away. We are considered a leading off-the-shelf T-cell immunotherapy company (Nasdaq ATRA) developing novel treatments for patients with cancer, autoimmune and viral diseases.


We’re proud of our team of 350+ Atarians co-located by design in South San Francisco (corporate headquarters) and Southern California (R&D and manufacturing headquarters in the northwest Los Angeles area) with a newly-established European headquarters in Zug, Switzerland. Atara also has a R&D site in the Denver, Colorado area and an office in New York City. Our Southern California hub is anchored by a new 90,000 sq. ft., state-of-the-art Atara T-Cell Operations and Manufacturing (ATOM) facility in Thousand Oaks, California.

Our mission – “Transform the lives of patients with serious medical conditions through pioneering science, teamwork, and a commitment to excellence.”


Our vision - “T-Cell Immunotherapy for every patient, any time.”


Visit to learn more.

Atara Bio is an equal opportunity employer and makes employment decisions on the basis of merit and other lawful factors. In accordance with applicable law, the Company prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth or medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth), gender identity, expression or dysphoria, marital status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, veteran status, caregiver status, sexual orientation, transgender status or any other classification protected by federal, state or local laws or because of the individual’s association with a member of a protected group or connection to an organization or group related to a protected group.

We comply with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act. All applicants must have authorization to work for Atara Bio in the United States.


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