Research and Development Manager


Company Background: The Group provides chemical solutions to the downstream materials industry. It is a global company and it provides its customers with its formulation expertise and knowledge of downstream chemical products.


Position Summary: Assume responsibility for the research and development and quality control functions for the South African operation, with particular emphasis on transferring knowledge and technical expertise from the research and development centre at the Group’s head quarters; ensuring the highest standards within processing, product quality, identifying customers needs and developing new products/solutions to meet these needs.



Key Responsibilities:

  • Establish him or herself in the position, building on existing momentum without alienation of existing staff
  • Rapidly develop an understanding of the research and development activities of the Group and the South African operation
  • Develop relationships with both existing customers and new customers; identify their needs and manage all aspects of new product development
  • Assume a pivotal role in championing quality within the company, implementing effective quality systems to ensure that all products are of the highest quality standards.
  • Effectively manage all available resources in the laboratory and quality control department to achieve an acceptable business performance by:

- leading the subordinate managers

- setting, implementing and monitoring key tasks

- re-organising resources to maximise efficiency

- creating an ethos of excellence and desire for innovation and continuous improvement


Key Attributes:

  • Must have a Bachelor of Science degree with a inherent chemistry / chemical understanding
  • A minimum of five year’s working experience in laboratory, quality control and research and development functions in the speciality chemicals sector
  • A track record of success in developing new products
  • Must have managed a staff complement of at least six people.

Personal Characteristics:

  • Excellent communication skills both verbal and written
  • Professional and confident, credible and articulate with the ability to establish relationships with customers
  • Must be open-minded, creative, innovative and inquisitive
  • Commercially astute, able to assess the financial implications of actions and strategies
  • Must have drive, initiative and the ability to make things happen. Achievement orientated and a “can-do” mentality
  • A people's person with the ability to lead and influence people; good interpersonal skills
  • Prepared to travel extensively nationally and internationally, visiting Group companies, sharing and gaining knowledge, and attending conferences