Overview

This position is responsible for coordinating all activities involved with the selection, design, evaluation, and development of accessories, from ideation stage to production, as well as overseeing, mentoring, and supervising Product Accessories Specialists.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Oversees, guides, mentors, and directs Product Specialists within the department to lead to successful development of accessories for new units in many of the responsibilities below.
  • Researches, analyzes, develops, and oversees Accessory Development Plans for new product to compliment vehicles, meet consumer expectations, and generate company profits.
  • Develops and presents by-model Accessory Development plans, based on market knowledge and trends, as well as input from KMC Accessory Sales/Marketing.
  • Works directly with Product Managers, Vehicle Marketing, and Accessory Sales/Marketing to develop and bring to market new accessories.
  • Coordinates Accessory Development activities AKM R&D Product Development, KMM R&D Accessory Engineers, KMC Global Accessories
  • Development Team, AKM Marketing, AKM Product Managers and Tier-1 Accessory Vendors in the US and Canada for future vehicles and continued support of existing vehicles.
  • Develops and maintains accurate timelines for Accessory Development. Guides Product Specialists to ensure deadlines are met. Updates and reports weekly.
  • Anticipates effects of various accessories on the performance of vehicles.  Selects products for purchase considering functional value, price competitiveness, market demand, product quality and safety.
  • Acts as a key liaison with both established and prospective accessory vendors. Develops and maintains relationships to facilitate the development and procurement of new accessories.
  • Confers with vendors to obtain product or service information such as price, availability, and delivery schedule.
  • Confirm quality by performing fitment evaluation of developed accessories and First Article of Inspection prior to release of new items.
  • Leverage process expertise to frame complex quality issues, which help identify root causes that lead to problem resolution
  • Reviews bid proposals and negotiates contracts within budgetary limitations and scope of authority.
  • Maintains current knowledge of market conditions, competitors, and trends. This includes periodic analysis and reporting.
  • Negotiates initial purchases and estimates values according to knowledge of market price.
  • Participates in decision making process via committee to determine new accessory orders and initial purchase orders.
  • Reports development status to upper management on a regular basis.
  • Tracks current accessory sales situation including sales rate and inventory levels.
  • Conducts hands-on fitment tests to ensure quality fit and finish, researches data for accessory problems, provides reports that quantify and prioritize trouble subjects, collects failed samples for investigations, works with vendors for product improvements and provides direction for solutions.
  • Works closely with Website, Ecommerce, and Catalog Coordinator to assure correct data and photos are presented on websites, technical data, and in catalogs.
  • Coordinates with Vehicle Marketing to support accessory placement on vehicles for photoshoots, Press Events, and Consumer Events.
  • Continually look for new accessory opportunities and works with 3rd party vendors to develop.
  • Assists Parts & Accessories Sales Team with technical questions on accessories.

Education and Experience:

High school diploma or general education degree (GED) is mandatory; a Bachelor’s degree (BA/BS) or equivalent from four-year college is preferred; and minimum 5-8 years related experience and/or training in an accessory development environment; or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, you must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.

  • Must exhibit excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Must have the ability to lead and direct team members to successfully completion of their tasks.
  • Must demonstrate the ability to successfully prioritize and organize multiple, competing tasks.
  • Must be extremely detail and deadline oriented.
  • Must bring energy and enthusiasm to group or team efforts.
  • Must demonstrate a positive attitude; be self-motivated and able to work as part of a team.
  • Extensive background in the motorcycle, ATV, utility, and personal watercraft industries is required.  Knowledge and experience of manufacturing techniques is a definite asset.
  • Approximate percentage of travel: 30-40%

Computer Skills: 

To perform this job successfully, you should have solid knowledge and experience working with Microsoft’s Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access software.

Physical Demands:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision and ability to adjust focus.

About Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A.

Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A. (KMC) markets and distributes Kawasaki motorcycles, ATVs, side x sides and Jet Ski ® watercraft through a network of almost 1,100 independent retailers, with close to an additional 7,400 retailers specializing in general purpose engines. Kawasaki and its affiliates employ nearly 3,100 people in the United States, with approximately 260 of them located at our Foothill Ranch, CA headquarters. We’re proud to say that Kawasaki has a great reputation in the industry, strong brand recognition, exemplary quality, and excellent customer service.