Founded in 1986 as a partnership between Nittoku and Autoneum, UGN is the preferred producer of high quality acoustic, interior trim, and thermal management products, and a recognized leader in customer satisfaction for the Japanese transplant automotive industry in North America.  UGN, with more than $400 million in revenue, has six locations in the United States—Farmington Hills, Michigan; Jackson, Tennessee; Monroe, Ohio; Somerset, Kentucky; Tinley Park, Illinois; and Valparaiso, Indiana; as well as a location in Silao, Guanajuato, Mexico—specializing in manufacturing, research, development, testing, and service support.  Visit our website at

The Somerset, Kentucky, facility opened in 2005, and is a dynamic and fast-paced plant with more than 350 team members, all intensely focused on improving production systems and overall efficiency.  UGN Somerset is a 300,000 square foot manufacturing facility, the first to produce the Ultra-Light™ acoustic carpet system.  Throughout the years, the Somerset plant has received many health and safety awards, including the “Perfect Record Award” from the National Safety Council, and the Manpower Safety Partner Award.  In 2011, it also was awarded the Honda Green Factory Achievement Award for Recognition of Green Factory Activities in the area of Conservation of Natural Resources.

The Continuous Improvement Manager will serve as the primary lead in the Continuous Improvement focus at the Somerset, KY plant. They will schedule and participate in all kaizen events including activities in cycle time analysis, brainstorming, problem-solving, standard work, set up reduction, 5S, visual management, and error-proofing activities in the manufacturing facility. They serve as primary resource for kaizen team training, and assist plant teams in sustaining gains achieved in Continuous Improvement (CI) efforts. The Continuous Improvement Manager also acts as a site contact for overall kaizen improvement, development and implementations.


The core components of the Continuous Improvement Manager’s duties revolve around the Capabilities of the Operationally Outstanding; Process Design, Problem Solving, Knowledge Sharing, and Teaching. These capabilities are otherwise known as the 4Cs. They will become proficient users of TPS tools such as Standard Work, Problem Solving, and Pull Systems.  They will also support training needs relevant to continuous improvement as required. They will develop skills and knowledge in the TPS to support effective implementation throughout UGN.  Including support in the understanding, development and embracing of the Continuous Improvement / kaizen methodologies.

  • Plan for and develop the model for UGN as a world-class development organization. Set the vision.
  • Serve as the local leader of kaizen.
  • Provide support for training of Team Members through consistent communications and visits with other UGN facilities.
  • Support/Manage the registration, approval and scheduling of seminars and training events that are relevant to continuous improvement.
  • Design and develop training curriculum as defined by the Plant Managers and local skill assessments relevant to continuous improvement.
  • Set vision for local training facilities including assistance in the purchase of new training materials and equipment.
  • Mentor the local PIT members to ensure effective training skills at the plant level.
  • Provide reports on relevant CI training programs as requested.
  • Develop schedules for kaizen events and training programs relative to continuous improvement.
  • Take part in new Team Member orientations as appropriate.
  • Understand, practice and mentor the plant level PIT members.


  • Associate’s degree (A. A.) or equivalent from two-year college or technical school; or three plus years related experience and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Ability to read and interpret documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals. Ability to write routine reports and correspondence. Ability to speak effectively before groups of customers or employees of organization.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office applications – Word, Excel, and Microsoft Outlook, and also have knowledge of Manufacturing software.
  • Strong lean, Kaizen, CI and Toyota Production Systems knowledge.
  • Automotive industry experience preferred.
  • Ability to lead and train others in lean concepts.

To apply, please email your resume to Lisa Jurack at

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