Senior Buyer

Palo Alto, CA /
Heaviside – Manufacturing /
Here at Kitty Hawk in Palo Alto, we are leading the race to market with our all-electric  Vertical Take off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft.  Project Heaviside is Kitty Hawk’s latest high-performance electric VTOL vehicle. It is designed to be fast, small, and exceedingly quiet, taking advantage of new possibilities to free people from traffic. 

We are looking for a Senior Buyer to help develop and manage the purchasing, material planning, requirement flowdown, and inventory management operations of manufacturing.

Within 3 months you will:

    • Learn the parts and processes required to build a Heaviside from scratch
    • Fully understand our Bill of Materials and Part Master Data
    • Create purchase orders for production material
    • Fully understand our inventory and material coverage status

Within 6 months you will:

    • Establish the requirement flowdown required for certification compliance
    • Become an ERP power user through formal & on-the-job training
    • Source new vendor partners to reduce cost and improve quality performance
    • Create an inbound logistics roadmap
    • Implement inventory cycle count process

Within 12 months you will:

    • Create cost-reduction roadmap to reduce the material costs of the Heaviside
    • Partner with the quality lead to perform first audit of our vendor partners
    • Take over all sourcing for engineering change orders


    • Source, purchase, and plan all production material requirements to build a Heaviside
    • Primary point of contact for vendor partners, advising on build forecast, quality issues, and design changes
    • Ensure continuity of material for manufacturing in order to avoid component shortages
    • Follow-up with Vendors to ensure delivery meets our production schedule
    • Lead the definition and set up of material ordering process 
    • Identify cost saving opportunities and work with vendor partners to reduce material costs
    • Inventory Control: Organize and maintain warehouse and inventory areas for efficient material storage, handling, and accuracy
    • Define, develop, and lead inventory cycle count process
    • Develop processes and procedures for purchasing, inventory management, material scheduling, and both inbound and outbound logistics


    • Bachelor’s or Master’s degree or the equivalent in experience and evidence of exceptional ability
    • At least eight years working experience in aerospace purchasing
    • Excellent analytical and judgment skills
    • Strategic Sourcing, opportunity analysis, and strong negotiation with highly effective communication skills are a must
    • Extensive experience working with ERP systems including purchasing, material planning, and inventory control modules
    • Ability to work independently in a fast paced environment, prioritize appropriately and handle multiple tasks and projects simultaneously with various cross functional teams
    • Strong written and verbal communications in order to facilitate relationships with both engineering and production
    • Familiarity with a wide variety of technologies: PCB assembly, wire harness manufacturer, carbon fiber, bonding, electrical and avionics assemblies
    • Open to international and domestic travel to suppliers
We welcome you to apply even if you don’t match every requirement posted for this role.  No one candidate will be a 100% perfect match to our description, so if you are passionate about working on the next evolution in aviation and have similar experience to what we are looking for, we encourage you to apply.  Diverse backgrounds and experiences promote innovation and our goal is to build a team that encompasses a variety of backgrounds, experiences, and skills.

All of our team whose roles allow them to work remotely are doing so, and will continue to do so until we’re able to be back in the office. For teams that are not able to work remotely we’re making every accommodation possible to provide a safe working environment, and ensuring we meet all state and county guidelines. 

Our headquarters is in Palo Alto and we offer a comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental, vision, and life insurance, unlimited PTO days, 10 company holidays, a 401(k) plan with 40% company matching (no vesting period), flight lesson subsidy, education assistance, and company-sponsored social events. For those working onsite, Kitty Hawk also offers commuter assistance, and free drinks and snacks.

Kitty Hawk provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Kitty Hawk abides by applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

Kitty Hawk is an E-Verify employer.