Automation Manager

Location : 3200 Fruit Ridge Ave, Walker, MI 49544


Who We Are:

Challenge Manufacturing is a leading Tier 1 automotive supplier to a growing portfolio of Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) customers. Since 1981, Challenge Manufacturing has grown from a very small shop in Walker, Michigan to 12 locations across North America with 4,000 team members supported by 1,500 industrial robots.   


What Makes Us Different?

Challenge Manufacturing is an employee-owned company and is currently ranked in the top 50 largest employee-owned companies in North America. Being an employee-owned company enables the Company to maintain a collaborative and teamwork-oriented work culture. Additionally, over time as the company grows, employees will share in that upside financially through ESOP retirement benefits.


Challenge is #PeoplePowered!


Position Summary:

The Automation Manager will be responsible for leading a talented group of multi-disciplined engineers across hardware and software with various specialtiesThis role will be a hands-on role responsible for scheduling, assignment prioritization, high-level technical support, and implementation. The candidate will also collaborate with other groups and will need to be capable of influencing others even without direct reporting structure. In concert with the Director of Automation this leader will help direct, document and roadmap the maintenance, and upgrading of the current automation and control infrastructureThis role will need to combine software engineering, controls automation and process engineering knowledge with a forward-thinking mindset and passion for digital transformation. This person will need be a continuous learner driven to explore and understand new automation technologies. 


Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

  • Lead a diverse team of engineers, utilizing delegation, continuous feedback, and a team first mentality. 
  • Review vendor automation systems specifications / scope documentation and validate systems design with Integrators. 
  • Continually implement and improve standards for automated equipment. 
  • Initiate and lead automation systems obsolescence conversions. 
  • Assist with creation and review of control system designs, & sequences of operation. 
  • Review design/overview system layouts, schematics, and control devices selections. 
  • Give input regarding the best choices for automation hardware and software. 
  • Utilizes advanced engineering understanding to make decisions with scalability in mind. 
  • Drive engineering best practice across disciplines. 
  • Implements the manufacturing vision, strategy/technology roadmap that supports the convergence of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) 
  • Finds new applications for technology and supports the digital transformation journey 
  • Continuously improve the overall operation, driving innovation, and new technology where possible. 
  • Exhibit leadership qualities that move the business forward through the collective talents and efforts of self and others 
  • Adopt a data driven mindset to evaluate problems & solution




Benefits We Offer:

We offer a comprehensive benefits package that includes medical, dental, and vision insurance, Health Savings Account with annual employer contributions, Flexible Spending Accounts, Company-Paid Short-Term Disability and Basic Life, Voluntary Life and LTD, Employer 401k Match, ESOP shares, tuition reimbursement, and paid time off.