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Technical Platform Manager

The Technical Platform Manager’s (TPM) primary function is to lead the cross-functional product and technical service teams. The TPM will manage the technical image of Akebono to the customer and provide the objective Voice of Customer (VOC) to Akebono. The TPM will manage a project(s) by ensuring the on-time-delivery of all technical items associated with the project. The TPM will act as the counterpart to the customer’s platform supervisor. The TPM will be the single-point primary technical contact representing Akebono for the customer.

Essential Duties/Responsibilities


  • Be on-site at customer as often as possible, interact on all technical discussions by teleconference otherwise.
  • The TPM will participate in all customer strategic discussions, for acquisition or issue resolution.


  • Work with customer to understand vehicle component benchmarking needs
  • Work with customer to understand RFQ requirements in advance of RFQ, and how Akebono portfolio fits needs / define the technical gaps
  • Work with sales and product groups to define a technical strategy for targeted acquisition programs
  • Work with HP Brake Design and SAE Engineering to define/run analyses leading to product proposals


  • Lead the coordination of all technical reviews, including dry-runs to ensure VOC is addressed
  • Roll-up all ED&D expenses (vehicle, NVH, product DV test costs) and forward to Sales for inclusion in quote
  • Lead coordination of manufacturing, quality, and engineering “exceptions” and/or clarifications lists. Ensure all customer requirements have an Akebono response.
  • Work with cross functional teams to negotiate requirements with customer

   Design & Development

  • Lead program(s) product development team (PDT) meetings with customer
  • Manage and track open issues. Drive open issues to closure through tracking, delegation, and escalation as needed.
  • Manage the on-time delivery of all technical items associated with the project.
  • Provide VOC to all associated program CRs (approve/reject authority)
  • Lead coordination of design reviews with customer; support design reviews at Akebono Plants
  • Lead coordination / definition of all customer and internal prototype sample vs. fingerprinting needs; create and manage PTM’s for prototypes; communicate needs to Program Manager
  • Support as needed all Program Manager led prototype delivery discussions with manufacturing plant
  • Support as needed all Program Manager led Project Reviews
  • Support as needed all Program Manager led APQP meetings (CFT meetings)
  • Work with Systems Engineering group (SAE) to update analyses (show system trade-off characteristics associated with component design changes)
  • Work with SAE & NVH group to coordinate requirements, test planning and data review leading to technical solutions; communicate test solutions to customers, Design Engineer and to Plant for feasibility reviews
  • Support Akebono change requests at the customer, monitor customer change authorization process and communicate requirements to gain approvals

   Production Readiness

  • Accompany customer during visits to Plant to review program readiness
  • Launch
  • Coordinate reviews of capability studies with customer engineering / SQE as needed


  • Lead program(s) post-SOP product development team reviews with customer
  • Manage and track open issues. Drive open issues to closure through tracking, delegation, and escalation as needed.
  • Manage the on-time delivery of all technical items associated with the project.
  • Provide VOC to all associated program CRs (approve/reject authority)
  • Lead resolution of all key warranty issues

Education and/or Experience (minimum required for the position)

Bachelor's degree in Engineering (B. S.) from four-year college or university is minimally required; Minimum of 5 years job experience directly related to foundation brake and/or friction material engineering at a company which supplies the passenger car and light truck market or at a vehicle manufacturer. Familiarity with customers’ brake system development processes is necessary.

Essential Knowledge, Skills, Abilities

  • Ability to use conventional e-mail and engineering office software (Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint to communicate engineering concepts, timing charts, etc.)
  • Ability to read, analyze, and interpret common scientific and technical journals, financial reports, and legal documents. Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints from customers, regulatory agencies, or members of the business community. Ability to effectively present information to top management, public groups, and/or boards of directors.
  • Ability to represent Akebono Corporation interests in the customer’s environment while maintaining a cooperative relationship with the customer.
  • Ability to carry out instructions from written, oral, or diagram form using common sense. Ability to deal with problems involving several concrete variables in standardized situations.
  • Ability to work with mathematical concepts such as probability and statistical inference, and fundamentals of plane and solid geometry and trigonometry. Ability to apply concepts such as fractions, percentages, ratios, and proportions to practical situations.
  • Ability to define problems, collect data, establishes facts, and draw valid conclusions. Ability to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions in mathematical or diagram form and deal with several abstract and concrete variables.
  • SKILLS (L=Low, M=Medium, H=High, E=Expert)
  • M/H understanding of APQP process
  • M/H understanding of customer processes, systems, and milestones; program, engineering, quality, and warranty
  • M understanding of vehicle and systems
  • M understanding of data acquisition systems and data analysis
  • H understanding of brake testing procedures and practices
  • M understanding of Akebono products
  • E understanding of customers, roles, and stake-holders
  • H level of urgency in addressing customer issues
  • Ability to manage teams without direct reports
  • Strong time management and multi-tasking skills
  • Good oral and written communication
  • Culturally sensitive
  • Scenario and outcome management; look at impact of upstream and downstream actions; seeks out win-win resolution
  • Approachable, respectful, good listener, positive, and optimistic
  • Proper utilization of escalation

Physical Demands/Environment

This position requires the following physical abilities: to sit; to use hands (to touch, handle, or feel), to reach with hands and arms, to stand, to talk, to hear and occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds.  In addition, the specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and ability to adjust focus.

The work environment is mostly sedentary; however, there is occasional exposure to moving mechanical parts and vibration and to outside weather conditions.  The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.


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