Continuous Improvement Specialist
New ideas are all around us, but only a few will change the world. That’s our focus at JPL. We ask the biggest questions, then search the universe for answers—literally. We build upon ideas that have guided generations, then share our discoveries to inspire generations to come. Your mission—your opportunity—is to seek out the answers that bring us one step closer. If you’re driven to discover, create, and inspire something that lasts a lifetime and beyond, you’re ready for JPL.
Located in Pasadena, California, JPL has a campus-like environment situated on 177 acres in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and offers a work environment unlike any other: we inspire passion, foster innovation, build collaboration, and reward excellence.
Are you passionate about leading, coaching, and implementing continuous improvement? Do you fundamentally believe in the power of positive change? Does empowering people at all levels of the organization to get involved in daily improvement and take control over the processes they operate invigorate you? If you answered yes, we have an amazing opportunity for you.
JPL’s Financial Management Division is seeking a dynamic Continuous Improvement Specialist. As a key member of the Strategic Planning and Innovation Office (SPIO), you will play an integral role in the team responsible for proactively preparing our organization for 2025 and beyond by driving strategic solutions that transform our culture and business processes to optimize business results. By leveraging your business process, continuous improvement, data analytics, and project management skills, you will collaborate with Finance business teams to identify and drive business process and continuous improvement solutions that promote the Division’s strategic success. You will champion change and will drive results through a collaborative, engaging and hands-on approach.
- Drive and implement strategic initiatives, goals, and action plans that optimize our business processes and operational effectiveness.
- Provide continuous improvement expertise as you coach, mentor, and provide guidance on best practices, approaches, and current tools to build, streamline, implement, and/or automate key processes.
- Utilize process improvement methods by identifying, documenting, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating processes and standard operating procedures, as well as continuous improvements and automated solutions.
- Analyze current financial processes to identify improvement opportunities by gathering process information through facilitating brainstorming sessions, interviews, observations, surveys, and workshops.
- Challenge current working practices to improve operational performance by identifying process improvement opportunities through an understanding of customer insights, analysis, benchmarking, future needs, and root cause.
- Capture and analyze process data to identify problems, inform process improvement, and establish baseline metrics.
- Define, develop, identify and evaluate key measures and performance indicators to measure operational success.
- Prepare and communicate strategic recommendations to Senior Management for the execution and prioritization of process improvement projects.
- Independently lead multiple operational improvement projects and teams from project initiation through execution.
- Typically requires a Bachelor’s degree in Business, Finance, Computer Systems Technology or related discipline with six years of applicable experience; Master’s degree in Finance or Business or related discipline with four years of experience; or D. in similar disciplines with two years of experience. Knowledge in one or more of the following fields: Strategic Planning, Lean Six Sigma, Project Management, Information Technology, Finance, and Change Management.
- Strong working knowledge and experience in continuous process improvement, project management, and business process transformational technical skills (Six Sigma, Lean, Agile, and Business Process Management and Continuous Improvement).
- Strong analytical and problem-solving skills to structure and scope complex problems, apply a range of analytical tools, gain and synthesize insights, and develop optimal solutions.
- Strong experience mapping and modeling business processes using a variety of process improvement tools and techniques.
- Experience leading teams from project initiation through execution in the delivery of business process.
- Excellent computer skills, including advanced skills in Microsoft Office Excel (Pivot Tables, Modeling) and Visio (process mapping), and data visualization tools such as such as Tableau or Qlikview.
- Excellent interpersonal and leadership skills to interface, partner, and influence all levels of employees, stakeholders, process owners, group supervisors, and senior management.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills.
- Demonstrated ability to think creatively and strategically.
- Resourceful, self-motivated, positive and proactive.
- Knowledge in Strategic Planning, Information Technology, and Finance.
- Lean Six Sigma Certified (Black or Green belt).
- Knowledge of SharePoint.
- Knowledge of Laboratory policies and procedures, NASA policies and procedures, and government regulations.
- Experience using and optimizing Oracle-based systems.
- Understanding of change management concepts (preferably in Prosci)
Connect with Us
Not ready to apply? Connect with us for general consideration.
JPL is an equal employment opportunity and affirmative action employer and will, whenever possible, actively recruit and include for employment members of underrepresented minority groups, females, disabled veterans, protected veterans, and otherwise qualified persons with disabilities. JPL will hire, transfer, and promote based on the qualifications of the individual to ensure equal consideration and fair treatment of all.
JPL is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor. For more information about "EEO is the Law" click here: eeoc_self_print_poster.pdf
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory is a federal facility. Due to rules imposed by NASA, JPL will not accept applications from citizens of designated countries unless they are Legal Permanent Residents of the U.S or have other protected status under 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3). The Designated Countries List is available at http://oiir.hq.nasa.gov/nasaecp/
If you are interested in applying for employment with Jet Propulsion Laboratory and need special assistance or an accommodation to apply for a posted position, contact our Human Resources department at (818) 354-5150 or via email at Staffing@jpl.nasa.gov.
Written requests may be mailed to: Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Attention: Staffing and Employment Programs, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Mail Stop T1720C, Pasadena, CA 91109