The industrial director defines and steers the company’s industrial strategy. It identifies the axes of development (products, potential markets …), makes the organizational choices (outsourcing, transfer of activities …), affects production and negotiates high level partnerships.
Definition of the company’s industrial strategy in conjunction with the managing director
- Follow market developments : sales, technological innovations, consumer trends.
- Study the positioning and performance of the company’s products on its market.
- Develop the company’s product strategy : study the needs of customers in connection with the company’s sales management.
- Make positioning choices : refocusing on the company’s “ core business ”, external growth strategy, etc.
- Develop high-level business contacts by retaining existing customers and prospecting for new customers.
- Negotiate contracts and manage commercial agreements for large accounts (partnerships, etc.).
Global management of the industrial branch of the company
- Define the industrial production policy in line with the company’s overall strategy.
- Make large-scale industrial organization choices (local, national or international) : outsourcing, subsidiaries, transfer of activities from one site to another (relocation, etc.).
- Plan the overall allocation of resources (human, material and economic) between production sites and general organizational procedures.
- Make the investment choices concerning the production tool.
- Monitor and report to senior management on the results of its activity in financial terms (profit center or cost center depending on the direction of the company).
Definition of the operational strategy of the production sites
- Define the main lines of the production policy and support services in conjunction with the production manager and the technical manager (maintenance, general services, organization, etc.).
- Optimizing the means of production in a cross-functional manner : piloting the implementation of an information system, developing synergies between production sites, etc.
- Conclude high-level industrial partnerships with research organizations, laboratories (R&D) or subcontractors.
- Manage the company’s purchasing and industrial subcontracting policy in collaboration with the purchasing department.
- Have studies carried out by a design office or the methods department on new products to be produced or process evolution.
Generally attached to general management, the industrial director may be required to participate in thinking about the positioning of the company vis-à-vis the market and its competitors.
In complex commercial negotiations, the industrial director can support the commercial management. He thus takes part in discussions in order to convince potential customers of the technical possibilities of the production site.
VARIABILITY OF ACTIVITIES
The role of the industrial director varies according to the sector of activity and the characteristics of the production tool :
- In large companies, the industrial director is responsible for several production sites. In structures of the “ autonomous production units ” type , the industrial director can take charge of the development of a line or range of products on his markets (technical validation, technological and industrial watch). In PME-PMI, he often takes the name of technical director : his field of action extends from the coordination of technical support from manufacturing to general services.
- In certain sectors (aeronautics, automotive, pharmaceutical industry, food industry, etc.), the industrial director will be a specialist working on a reduced number of references. In other sectors (tools, toys, textiles, etc.), it will have to take on an extremely varied production, sometimes with hundreds or even thousands of references.
His role will also be different if he manages a single production unit or if he supervises a multi-site organization. In this case, one of its missions will be to choose the most relevant location based on the production requested. The production in small series will be rather circumscribed in France, the » large series » in emerging countries (China, India, Brazil, Eastern Europe, Maghreb …) ; which will require frequent trips abroad.
The international dimension is decisive in the management mode of the industrial director : thus, the industrial director who manages a production site based in France will be able to know in detail the problems encountered by his teams. Conversely, the industrial director of an international group whose factories are located in two or three continents will divide his time of presence between the different countries. Team management will be partially delegated to the local production manager.
- President and CEO
- General Manager of the company
NB : The industrial director is generally a member of the management committee.
- General engineering schools (Central School, Polytechnic, Catholic Institute of Arts and Crafts, National Institute of Applied Sciences …) or specialized in the field of business activity
- 3rd technical university cycles (Master / Master in Business Administration) specialized in the field of activity of the company
Duration of experience
This position is open to executives supported by a minimum of ten years of professional experience, ideally in technical functions or in production.
- Perfect technical mastery of the company’s field of activity to understand product constraints and market competition
- Perfect mastery of the components of the technical tool in order to be able to provide expertise during high-level commercial negotiations, adapt products and supervise organizational changes
- Very good managerial qualities to monitor his activity in the form of an income statement
- Very good knowledge of the operation of the company and of the relationships between the different departments within the framework of a transversal management of industrial activity
- Imperative command of English, ideally supplemented by that of one or two other languages when certain industrial activities are carried out abroad
- Height of vision and strategic sense to guide the industrial strategy of the company
- Authority, voluntarism and strength of conviction to make teams adhere to the objectives and move them forward with a common goal
- Listening skills and open-mindedness to dialogue with various interlocutors (functional and operational)
- Analysis and synthesis skills to get to the point quickly in the context of complex decisions (choice of investment, opening or closing of sites, subcontracting, etc.)
- Ability to manage several substantive files simultaneously ; for example, reflection on the organization of a production line, on the creation of a new product, on a new source of supply of raw materials …
Confirmed manager : between 100 and 200 k € (depending on the size of the organization and the scope of the position)
- Industrial Technical Director
- Industrial Product Manager
- Industrial Operations Director