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Technology SME III
International Paper | Loveland, Ohio
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Job Description

This candidate would need to have expertise in the area(s) Power, Pulp, Paper and Maintenance.  The successful candidate would need to be willing to relocate to any US mill location.


      *Multiple positions are available.



1.  Purpose:   Technology Subject Matter Experts (SME)s use expertise and leadership gained through years of experience to deliver improvement within the manufacturing system.  The duties vary widely between practicing safety leadership, troubleshooting, deliberate improvement projects, capital projects, equipment and process studies and audits.  A key component of a Subject Matter Expert’s job is to transfer knowledge and skills to mill personnel to build on-site capability.  The SMEIII position is a mature SME, often recognized for specific skills and has a track record of delivering solid support.


2.  Key Accountabilities:  The Subject Matter Expert position is accountable for delivering results on a wide range of assignments, short and long-term, across our global mill system.  The SME must work well with varied teams and be able to quickly engage employees from all levels of the organization from executive to the shop floor, and influence vendors and contractors.  The SME III is an independent technical leader within the area of expertise and sphere of influence.   The SME III is increasingly requested by name, and is becoming comfortable influencing at the business or enterprise level.  The SME III works with the facilities to identify and execute projects with a minimum of guidance and supervision. 


3.  Scope:              The Subject Matter Expert position functions as an internal consultant, and is expected to develop projects and produce improvement in the area of expertise anywhere in the company.  The duties range widely between safety leadership, troubleshooting, optimization, teaching, deliberate improvement projects, capital projects, process audits, strategic studies, and mentoring.  Performance measurements include:

  • Ability to contribute to, and deliver improving safety results, with a specific emphasis in the area of expertise
  • Ability to rapidly and accurately diagnose and  resolve operating malfunctions, either onsite and or remotely
  • Reduction in consumption of direct raw materials, energy, and labor.
  • Improvement in production, reliability, availability and quality above historical limits and to world-class levels
  • Ability to interface with and technically develop and mentor others within the area of expertise
  • Ability to drive results and self-manage priorities on multiple simultaneous projects


    The SME III is comfortable working in all of these areas, and has passion that influences the facilities to improve.  This expert delivers strong results, but may not be known for a broad skill set or throughout the enterprise as the go-to person to solve the very hardest problems.


    4.  Key Competencies:   The SME is a self-directed individual, and as such needs a wide array of leadership, functional / technical and organizational skills.  Key examples include:

          Leadership/managerial competencies

  • Interpersonal Savvy – This position interacts with all levels of the company, across the cultures and languages within IP operations.  The individual must adapt as the situation requires and maintain positive outcomes.
  • Learning on the Fly & Problem Solving – This person is the expert within their area of specialization.  As new or unique situations are encountered, they must self-develop technical skills as the situation dictates.   
  • Presentation & Communication Skills – This person must employ strong verbal and written skills in the rapid communication of issue resolution and new opportunity development.
  • The SME III is functional across a range of environments, and generally fits into team settings, but may not emerge as the clear leader in all situations.  Global exposure and ability to work in several countries is evident.
  • The SME III is able to delegate and work through others much of the time and particularly at the facility level, forming relationships that create trust and results even when the SME III is not on site.
  • The SME III is becoming more strategic, but is often more tactical in attacking a problem.
  • The SME III is critical to support of numerous projects and can lead a project at a limited level within a facility, but is generally not leading enterprise or business-wide projects.

    Functional / Technical competencies

  • Process – Expert in the individual’s specific area of expertise or combination of areas of expertise.
  • Engineering – Experienced in fundamentals of engineering needed for process or equipment design and knowledgeable of the capital process to at least a moderate level.
  • Operations - Familiar in the development of operating procedures and policy.
  • The SME III’s skills and technical proficiency are good, but generally not seen as world-class or cutting edge.  Imparting good general technical knowledge within the individual’s skill set is a clear objective of the position to build capability and self-sufficiency within the facilities.


    5.  Minimum qualifications:  Are there minimum qualifications beyond bachelor’s degree or equivalent                     experience?                                                                       ý Yes                   ¨ No

  • The applicant will possess at least 10 years experience in operations and service within the area of expertise
  • The applicant will be capable of supporting extensive domestic and international travel requirements, and providing process technical support on a business priority basis.

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