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Enrichment Technology Continuous Improvement Operations Lead

Date: Nov 14, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 9494 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest US Department of Energy science and energy laboratory, conducting basic and applied research to deliver transformative solutions to compelling problems in energy and security. We are seeking an Enrichment Technology Continuous Improvement Operations Lead who will support the Enrichment Science and Engineering Division (ESED) within the Isotope Science and Engineering Directorate (ISED) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). ESED serves the nation in two critical areas: advancing enrichment technologies and exploring stable isotope production and applications. The division leverages an elite staff of scientists and engineers with the world-leading capabilities of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) to deliver groundbreaking advancements with a variety of applications, from national security to life-saving medical treatments.To successfully execute this critical mission set, ESED is currently seeking a highly qualified continuous improvement professional to serve as the Division Continuous Improvement Operations Lead. The successful candidate will team with division director and staff to build on a rich history of accomplishments in enrichment science and engineering and deliver critical national security advances, stable isotope process developments, and a wide range of enriched stable isotopes.


Major Duties and Responsibilities:

The Enrichment Technology Continuous Improvement Operations Lead will drive the performance assurance and continuous improvement culture within ESED and provide leadership and guidance to staff and ESED leadership. The role will serve as the primary ESED liaison between technical and management staff and ORNL’s Performance Analysis and Quality. The Continuous Improvement Lead will analyze requirements and operations within ESED and recommend processes, policies, and procedures supporting multiple programs to ensure compliance with differing Sponsor and ORNL quality management system requirements.

It is expected that the successful candidate will be an ambassador for continuous improvement within the division, accelerate quality management system development and implementation in collaboration with ORNL quality representatives and ESED management. The successful candidate will be a member of the ESED leadership team and serve in a proactive role to ensure adoption and integration of best practices in quality assurance, compliance, and continuous improvement in a graded approach applicable to research and development organizations. 

Major Duties and Responsibilities:


  • Serve as advisor and consultant to ESED leadership on use of multiple improvement strategies such as Total Quality Management, Integrated Safety Management, and Lean Six Sigma to develop and monitor improvement processes within the organization
  • Develop, communicate, and facilitate implementation of continuous improvement initiatives to ensure performance effectiveness within ESED projects, operations, and processes
  • Lead ESED staff and line management, in collaboration with Performance Analysis and Quality staff, in developing and implementing policies and procedures that ensure compliance with ORNL and stakeholder/sponsor quality and performance assurance requirements
  • Coordinate with technical staff and matrixed Quality Representatives in the development and effective execution of the quality assurance program  
  • Facilitate management of technical and compliance-based issues
  • Ensure appropriate documentation and flow-down of technical and compliance-based requirements for procedures and processes affecting multiple enrichment projects


The successful candidate will be required to effectively interact with various personnel and sponsors, both within and outside of ORNL. The ability to learn quickly and adapt to change is necessary. The candidate is expected to be able to work in a team environment with co-workers and management as well as perform independently. Excellent communication skills, including verbal, presentation, and writing skills are required.


As a member of the ORNL scientific community, the successful candidate will be expected to commit to ORNL’s Research Code of Conduct. The full code of conduct and a statement by the Lab Director’s office can be found here:


Basic Qualifications:

  • B.S. with 12 years of relevant experience or an M.S. with 10 years of relevant experience
  • Ability to hold and maintain a DOE Q security clearance
  • Demonstrated experience working with diverse R&D teams to solve complex, interdisciplinary problems.
  • Demonstrated experience implementing continuous improvement methods suitable for R&D (e.g., Integrated Safety Management, Six Sigma)
  • Possess in-depth knowledge of quality requirements associated with ASME NQA-1 and ISO 9001_2015,
  • The ability to work flexible hours and travel when required.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills with proven ability to successfully interact with internal and external project stakeholders
  • Proven ability to function well in a fast-paced research environment, set priorities to accomplish multiple tasks within deadlines, and adapt to ever-changing needs
  • A strong understanding of and application experience with the principles of project management


This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a clearance from the Department of Energy. As such, this position is a Workplace Substance Abuse (WSAP) testing designated position. WSAP positions require passing a pre-placement drug test and participation in an ongoing random drug testing program.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Active DOE Q clearance
  • 2+ years of experience in experimental R&D within a large, multiprogram research environment
  • Experience within the isotope enrichment industry
  • Understanding of DOE Order 413.3
  • Experience with the marking, handling, and storage requirements of sensitive documents (e.g., OUO, ECI, UCNI, CRD, SRD)


For more information about our benefits, working here, and living here, visit the “About” tab at




This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

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ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville