Quality Assurance Technician
OVERVIEW & JOB SUMMARY
Under direct and general supervision of the Quality Assurance Supervisor, the Quality Assurance Technician functions as a member of the Operations Services & Innovation team, the Quality Assurance Technician protects and enhances the integrity of Dr. Bronner’s brand through laboratory testing, raw material, and finished goods evaluation, document and database development, and root cause investigation support. The QA Technician participates as an active team member in the Quality sub-department of the Operations Services & Innovation division, providing technical support to the team and company-wide efforts and special projects as needed.
This position is located at Dr. Bronner’s headquarters in Vista, CA, and will not be a remote position once Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are important values at Dr. Bronner’s. All employees are called to practice acceptance, treat others with dignity and respect, learn from and celebrate each other’s differences, recognize one’s own privilege, root out one’s own and speak up against prejudice, and work to create a healthy and respectful workspace where colleagues feel valued and part of our community.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
To perform this job successfully, you must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
The following duties and responsibilities are those considered to be essential but do not represent all job functions that may be required to be performed by this position. Other comparable duties and responsibilities may be assigned as needed.
In-House Quality Laboratory Services:
- Perform and/or support lab testing of raw materials, WIP, or finished goods as needed, including microbiological, physical, chemical, organoleptic or otherwise
- Analyze, report, and archive test results
- Manage test equipment calibration scheduling
- Validate new or existing lab equipment and test protocols to support company growth
- Ensure supplies are in stock for in-house laboratory functions
- Coordinate testing with third-party labs as needed
Quality Assurance Program Development Support:
- Implement in-process data capture using Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Technology by building calibration models for two new in-house production processes: vegetable oil refining and bar soap base manufacturing
- Extrapolate and analyze data captured from two in-house liquid soap reactors to identify trends, procedural and energy efficiencies, and improvement potentials, and to troubleshoot issues
- Liaise with automation, production, and engineering staff on equipment and process design, validation, and pilot testing
- Support ISO 22716 implementation by writing, editing, and implementing new protocols, procedures, processes, test methods, sampling plans, to support the development of a comprehensive quality management system
Quality Assurance Technical Support:
- Collect and prepare samples of raw materials, WIP, and finished goods; facilitate testing at third-party labs and/or perform laboratory testing in-house.
- Compare testing results against Supplier COAs for material/supplier approval and/or validation
- Use database for tracking quality information, enter quality data; perform statistical analysis on trends over time; prepare charts and tables to share with management, suppliers, consultants, and/or customers as needed
- Create and/update product specification sheets based on trending of historical quality data
- Generate Finished Product COAs for distributors and customers as needed
- Participate in root cause investigations, analysis, inspections, and reporting as needed
- Deliver reports, technical information, test protocols proposals, executive summaries, or CAPAs on raw materials, or finished goods as needed
- Other duties as assigned within the job scope
The incumbent will interact closely with the Plant Operations Manager, Production Supervisor, Production Administration team, Sales & Customer Service teams, Logistics Manager, key warehouse workers, international and domestic suppliers, co-manufacturers/fillers, contractual advisors, 3rd party laboratory affiliates, and other industry contacts
Possession of a bachelor’s degree in Science or Engineering such as Biology, Microbiology, Chemistry, or related field, or demonstrated equivalent experience.
Three years of progressive experience in a laboratory, product manufacturing, and quality assurance/control role.
Three years of progressive experience with equipment and process validation, HACCP, FDA and/or ISO 22716 certified operations, standardized ISO, EU, USP, and AOCS Test Methods.
Personal care or Cosmetic industry experience is a plus.
Professional quality certifications are a plus (e.g. ASQ, Six Sigma, etc.).
Any combination of education and work experience that would be equivalent to the stated minimum requirements would qualify for consideration of this position.
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES
- Attitude: Confident, positive, enthusiastic, down to earth, flexible, & passionate
- Communication: Excellent, adaptive, creative, and concise verbal and written communicator in meeting spaces as well as over the phone, and e-mail; polite, professional, patient, and diplomatic in navigating inquiries; strong grammar skills. Requires strong interpersonal, communication, and organization skills including a good sense of judgment and the ability to build positive work relationships.
- Confidentiality: Maintain a high degree of confidentiality over all matters in the course of business operations including customer and employee information and demonstrate tact, discretion, exercise good judgment and discretion in handling and disseminating information.
- Critical Thinking: Ability to reason and analyze, to set and adhere to a timeline, accurately and independently, and to solve problems.
- Initiative: Responds promptly to requests, works quickly, accurately, and independently; effectively executes strategies, identify upcoming needs and potential risks; proactively manage tasks, meets challenges with resourcefulness, and present ideas and information in a manner that moves the team forward
- Leadership: Highly motivated and cooperative, takes initiative and responsibility for individual and group work, possesses a strong desire to succeed, accepts feedback from others, works with a spirit of enthusiasm and a sense of urgency.
- Organization: Exceptional proficiency in tracking deliverables, tasks, and project deadlines, juggling competing priorities, and multi-tasking efficiently
- Respect: Consciously learn from and celebrate differences among identities while recognizing commonalities and shared experiences; practice inclusive language and promote acceptance, safety, respect, inclusion, and value of individuals within the workplace, and those with whom you interact on behalf of the organization; become aware of all forms of bias, prejudice, and discrimination, and work to eliminate personal vestiges of racism, homophobia and sexism in thought, action and word; promptly report incidents of bias, prejudice, and bigotry to the Human Resources Department or any member of the Executive Team.
- Teamwork: Exhibits objectivity and openness to others’ views, contributes to building a positive team spirit, is flexible to modifying work style to be effective within the group, able to work within a team environment and independently.
- Technical Proficiency: Advanced knowledge of MS Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, VISIO, and Outlook); digital file sharing and project management systems (Google Drive, Dropbox, and SharePoint)
- Ability to manage a diverse and expansive workload efficiently
- Ability to present technical information and analytical findings in a concise and collaborative manner with both QA Supervisor and internal key production members
- Ability to anticipate and seek out resources needed to complete projects independently
- Demonstrated ability to lead projects and manage cross-departmental working groups
TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT USED
Must be proficient in the operation of standard office support equipment including, but not limited to, personal computer, copier/scanner, fax, telephone system, etc.
Basic knowledge of wet chemistry laboratory equipment, Spectrophotometer, Refractometer, Viscometer, Moisture Analyzer, and pH meter.
Must have reliable transportation and possess and maintain a valid California driver’s license including proof of personal vehicle insurance coverage and insurability under the Company’s insurance carrier standards.
PHYSICAL, MENTAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL REQUIREMENTS
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to:
- Perform work in a climate-controlled office setting.
- Sit, stand, walk, bend, kneel, and uses hands, arms and legs for dexterity and balance frequently.
- Occasionally lifts, carries, and balances objects weighing up to 35 pounds.
- Pulls and pushes objects such as file drawers, loaded carts, audio/visual equipment, computers, and similar office equipment and supplies.
- Prioritizes and multi-tasks work and projects requiring good memory, concentration, and analytical thinking.
- Occasionally is required to perform the safe operation of a vehicle, office equipment, and machines, and recognize and abate safety hazards within the workplace.
- Must be able to hear, see including the distinction of colors, read and communicate verbally and in writing frequently with a wide range of people from divergent socioeconomic backgrounds and origins.
- The noise level in the work environment is usually low to moderate (in a plant environment).
Dr. Bronner’s is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.