The Production Design Group within the company, Inc. focuses on engineering innovative restaurant system solutions to enable profitable growth for 2,500+ restaurants.  The Senior Lead Engineer role within the Validate/Launch group of Production Design is to work with a team through all phases of the Innovation process while leading and influencing projects so that they will meet a high standard of reliability and intuitive ease of use. 

The focus of this role is to ensure the projects are fully ready for validation testing and launch into the company system.  This role is responsible for leading the in-field testing of new food-production equipment, control systems, and processes and is heavily involved in influencing our equipment suppliers to thorough and successful completion of projects that meet functional and reliability standards.  The role includes managing the in-field testing, validation and approval of equipment for cooking, processing, hot and cold holding and production-control systems.  

A chief contribution will be to utilize disciplined principles of engineering analysis, problem-solving and project-schedule management.  Position must be able to understand current state-of-the art equipment and control system designs and apply robust, forward-thinking test planning and problem resolution decisions. This role is also expected to be an influencer within the company to help direct the organization through innovative concepts and communicate their applications in the context of menu and operational strategies.


  • Directly lead new equipment and control-systems development projects through the Validate and Launch phases.
  • Provide technical leadership and influence on a team of engineers and test technicians.
  • Support the development of IoT equipment functional requirements and testing protocols for new equipment designs with internal project teams and external vendor partners.
  • Create clear and definitive documentation of systems to support equipment rollout teams throughout the launch of new equipment and systems.
  • Strategically partner across the organization, including Production Design, Enterprise Analytics, Training and Digital Transformation & Technology (formerly IT), Supply Chain, Kitchen Design, Restaurant Operations, Restaurant Development.
  • Lead in the development of test planning and success criteria for new equipment and system designs based on product quality, operational-process, launch-timeline and facility-space constraints.
  • Lead collaboration with cross-functional teams to ensure that specifications meet all business needs and that projects are successfully executed within constraints.
  • Communicate well with and ability to influence non-technical business disciplines through the explanation and adoption of technology as applied to menu and operational strategies.
  • Lead in the development of supplier-partner relationships to allow fast and thorough development of new equipment and systems within demanding timelines.
  • Assist in selecting, and work in partnership with, potential suppliers to refine requirements and define validation testing protocol and success criteria.
  • Define requirements and testing protocols for in-field testing and qualification.
  • Candidate will be required to leverage their skills as an individual contributor and in a technical leadership capacity.
  • Will be responsible to present definitive documentation in a final release package to downstream organizations and support rollout teams throughout the Launch of new equipment and systems.
  • Will be responsible for aligning strategy and work output with various cross-functional disciplines including but not limited to other teams within Production Design, Restaurant Development, Supply Chain, Kitchen Design, Culinary Commercialization, Restaurant Operations, Training and Digital Transformation and Technologies.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Proven ability to provide technical leadership to mentor peers
  • Experience and familiarity with various digital control-system platforms
  • Ability to work with wide latitude for unreviewed action or decision on most outcomes
  • Proficiency in MS Office products (Excel, Word, PowerPoint)
  • Experience with 2D engineering drawing software (AutoCAD or equivalent)
  • Advanced project management skills demonstrated
  • Excellent communication, relational, and team skills to enable interaction with restaurant team members, as well as corporate peers and leaders
  • Knowledge to produce and maintain technical specification documents on both process and equipment improvement opportunities
  • Experience leading cross-functional teams that include both technical and non-technical aptitudes
  • Experience with and an aptitude toward work involving applied research to explore and define technically vague concepts with the ability to apply them to executable projects

Preferred Qualifications: 

  • Master of Science in an Engineering discipline or MBA.
  • People management experience with an engineering team in a professional environment.
  • Experience and familiarity with advanced vision systems.
  • Experience with 3D solid modeling programs, SolidWorks or equivalent.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop innovative tests and experiments to validate ideas and theories.
  • Proven track record of identification and application of new technology from other industries to their current employer.
  • Thought leadership around technology adoption and design for reliability.

Minimum Years of Experience: 

  • 5 years of engineering work experience

Travel Requirements: 25%

Required Level of Education: Bachelor of Science 

Major/Concentration: Engineering discipline, e.g. Computer, Electrical, Mechanical, Industrial, Aerospace, etc.

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