Sr. Specialist, Process Improvement

Seattle, Washington /
Operations – Program Management /
Full-time
About DroneSeed/Silvaseed: 

Our mission is simple: Make reforestation scalable to mitigate the worst effects of climate change. Trees are highly effective at carbon removal, but scaling reforestation has significant obstacles--and that gets our team fired up about how we can build solutions using technology.  We’ve built DroneSeed, and acquired and combined it with 130-year-old Silvaseed to be a one-stop-shop for reforestation and remove obstacles at each of four steps: 
- Seed. Natural regeneration after wildfire is in decline due to climate change resulting in larger fires of higher severity. These factors eliminate seed stored in the soil for regeneration. This creates challenges for seed supply. To respond we’ve expanded Silvaseed to become the largest private seed bank in the west and the first call for land managers affected by fire.  
- Grow space. There’s not enough nursery greenhouse capacity to grow seedlings (link). We’re currently growing millions of seedlings per year at Silvaseed and, while we’re doubling that output, we’re creating a replicable method to scale further.  
- Better tools for labor. We need better tools to accomplish more reforestation faster. DroneSeed is utilizing heavy lift drone swarms to deliver seed vessels after wildfire and boost seed establishment in combination with seedlings that are interplanted later. 
- Finance. For the last 20 years, carbon offsets haven’t provided capital for the high-up front costs of reforestation. Landowners have had to rely on limited grant funding. Repayment periods were 25 years or more and reforestation projects were exceedingly rare. That changed two years ago when third-party certifier Climate Action Reserve (CAR) announced the Climate Forward protocol to conservatively forecast the carbon tonne removals as reforested trees grow. DroneSeed is developing one of the first projects using this protocol. This and future projects following the protocol will be protected by legal easements on replanted and re-seeded land, monitored by state-accredited land trusts, and have insurance buffer pools in place in case fire occurs again. Under the CAR protocol, DroneSeed is generating the most transparent, highest-quality forestry-based carbon offsets on the market from reforestation projects. 

We need to overcome these four reforestation challenges to build back--even a fraction of--the forests we lose from wildfires every year. That's why we set out to build a model to make reforestation scaleable, which requires expanding the supply chain systems and financial flywheels behind them. That is the mission: make reforestation scalable to mitigate the worst effects of climate change.   


Highlights

DroneSeed HQ: Ballard Brewery District, Seattle, WA  
Silvaseed HQ: Roy, WA 

Team Size: ~100
Leadership Team: Grant Canary (CEO), Ben Reilly (CTO), John Hall (VP Ops & Finance), Cassie Meigs (Director of Account Management), Matthew Aghai (Senior Director of Bio R&D), Arnoud de Villegas (Senior Director of Business Development), Katherine Wong-Velasco (Director of Talent Acquisition) and Mary Caroline Pruitt (Senior Director of Marketing & Communications) 
Funding: $36M Series A from Social Capital, Seven Seven Six, DBL, Spero VC, TechstarsTechCrunch.
Notable Investors: Marc Tarpenning co-founder Tesla, Tobi Lutke CEO Shopify, Alexis Ohanian co-founder Reddit, Marc Benioff, Court Lorenzini 1st CEO DocuSign 
Market: $277B Carbon Offset Market (Refinitiv Analysis, Bloomberg NEF)
Revenue: Data will be shared with qualified candidates
Clients: 3 of 5 largest timber companies, Non-profits such as The Nature Conservancy, Tribal Nations, state and federal agencies, small family forests
Media: CNN, Mark Rober, National Geographic,  Today Show, Bloomberg

What you’ll be doing

We are looking for experienced Lean Six Sigma candidates to support our growing number of improvement initiatives across different departments. In this newly established position, you will report and work with your manager, your team members, and other cross-functional teams. You will be a key player in leading Lean Six Sigma projects together with key internal stakeholders and possible external partners, as well as planning change management activities and equipping leaders to facilitate continuous improvement. This role requires ownership, autonomy, and the ability to deliver results. You will work on difficult problems with high ambiguity that impact multiple internal teams. You will be responsible for setting the direction for our Lean Six Sigma projects in the pipeline. Through frameworks and methodologies such as DMAIC, using interviews, data collection, dialogue, and analysis with the involved areas, you will present business cases and be responsible for driving and implementing standardization and improvement projects as well as new innovative projects. 

What qualities will help you succeed in this role? You thrive in a fast-paced environment. You have a strong desire to create a foundation and standards, achieve and maintain operational excellence, and contribute to cross-functional initiatives. You naturally create a positive and inspiring environment around you, and possess excellent collaboration skills. 

Key Responsibilities:

    • Identify, define, and execute improvement initiatives through Lean Six Sigma methodologies and tools such as DMAIC.
    • Initiate and develop business cases for improvement projects. 
    • Create a pipeline of new innovative ideas for implementation. 
    • Report and follow up on KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).  
    • Implement strategy and structure for core Lean Six Sigma elements (e.g., visual management, problem solving, waste identification).  
    • Ensure training activities are available for colleagues to engage with and learn through the Lean initiatives.

Additional Responsibilities:

    • Interview and collect data from key business partners (quantitative and qualitative). 
    • Analyze large data sets in Google Sheets (or equivalent) to identify opportunities and drive fact-based decisions. 
    • Build dashboards/visuals using Google Sheets (or equivalent) to explain/communicate improvement impacts (e.g., process performance and identify opportunities for improvement). 
    • Partner closely with other areas to create recommendations on optimization opportunities.  
    • Ensure ongoing improvements in our processes and procedures. 
    • Act as systems thinker, business analyzer, barrier breaker and facilitator. 
    • Help drive and anchor change in the organization. 
    • Provide project leadership and management (conceptualize, design, develop, communicate, and implement). 
    • Coach middle management as well as area leads on continuous improvement concepts and how to effectively implement and adopt them into their daily rhythm of business. 
    • Possess the ability to see how the parts connect to the whole operation and respond cross-functionally to meet production and business goals, quality standards and company values. 
    • Always keep the bigger picture in mind, yet understand the importance of minding the details. 
    • Coach, lead, and champion improvement ideas to help others along their Lean / continuous improvement journey.

Qualifications:

    • Bachelor’s degree in related field (engineering, operations, supply chain management, transportation, or other quantitative field). 
    • Ability to manage time, juggle multiple priorities, and create high quality deliverables.
    • Strong business acumen, judgment, and maturity with the ability to connect improvement efforts to business value. 
    • Solid IT skills. 
    • 3-5 years of Lean experience, including identifying, managing, and driving process improvement efforts.
    • Lean Six Sigma Green Certification.
    • Communications skills: ability to communicate with management, peers, and subordinates effectively. 
    • Exceptional communication skills.
    • Ability to empathize with stakeholder needs and drive alignment across multiple teams.
    • Sound organizational and time management skills; ability to prioritize workload and manage multiple projects and tasks.
    • Experience in a startup environment is ideal.
Benefits of working at DroneSeed: We offer great healthcare benefits and an awesome office culture, and we are conveniently located in north Seattle (Ballard).

Other Information: Candidates must be eligible to work at DroneSeed HQ in Seattle, WA.
DroneSeed is an equal-opportunity employer and we are committed to building a diverse team.  If you’re deeply committed to our mission and capable of leading programs that enable multi-vehicle, heavy lift drone operations in some of the world’s most challenging terrain environments, we’d love to speak with you.