Footwear Developer

    Specialized strives to lead with innovative cycling footwear, built to inspire the most discerning riders & athletes.  In this position you’ll be the central contact between our exceptional design team & factory partners.  Using your solid knowledge of development & commercialization process, you will make recommendations on current materials and constructions in order to meet performance, timeline & costing objectives.   This is a pivotal role for creating the next generation of high performance footwear & requires previous footwear experience.


    1. Daily interface for highly organized communication with overseas development and vendors.
    2. Ensure seasonal timelines are met for assigned styles.
    3. Drive project management pace by scheduling reviews with product team & providing prompt weekly development updates.  Keep detailed meeting notes.
    4. Schedule meetings & update supply chain to ensure on time commercialization & timely delivery.
    5. Manage development of clear, concise product specification packages in 2/3d in collaboration with design team.
    6. Responsible for sending all design documents, files, die-lines, labels to vendor partners.
    7. Detailed tracking & documentation of specifications, changes & development history with vendors/factories.
    8. Work with vendors to provide accurate & detailed BOM / cost sheets.  Provide cost reduction proposals to meet targets.
    9. Coordinate timely delivery of high quality samples for review meetings & other sampling.
    10. Drive active communication with field testers to ensure fit, performance & quality objectives are met.
    11. Responsible for fit trials, size grade testing & other testing needed to identify issues prior to production.
    12. Continuously research new materials, new processes in collaboration with design / product team to generate new and relevant innovation.
    13. Responsible for part number generation & accuracy of product / cost information in MPL.
    14. Assist in development of packaging through translation, art department & overseas vendors.
    15. Assist in creating & continually improving SOP or inspection documentation with Asia/factory team to ensure product quality & standards.
    16. Bring a sense of urgency to identify & resolve quality issues in collaboration w/ factories & Asia team
    17. Domestic and international travel to Asia/Europe (3-4 trips/year), domestic (1-3 trips/year).
    18. Travel to tradeshows, material shows and partner with vendors to bring new materials and constructions.
    19. Other duties as assigned by the manager.


    1. Avid cyclist, with a solid understanding of the unique requirements of performance footwear.
    2. Strong verbal and written communication skills. Ability to work with all personality types in a positive manner.
    3. Proven ability to organize and prioritize multiple complex projects/tasks and meet deadlines.
    4. A working knowledge of shoe making process, tooling, and related materials.
    5. Candidate has understanding of design / development processes including timelines, manufacturing & delivery.
    6. Experience recruiting and communicating with riders/testers along with obtaining clear, precise feedback.
    7. Experience working with overseas suppliers preferred.


    1. College degree is required.
    2. Prior experience in technical footwear is a must, including strong knowledge of manufacturing processes including injection molding, welding, pattern making, closure technologies
    3. 5+ years product creation/development experience required.  Additional work experience may be considered in lieu of a degree.
    4. Passionate about great products, creative thinker and problem solver with a track record of success.
    5. Highly organized & a track record of managing complex projects
    6. Eye for technical detail & experience setting technical/quality standards & driving constant improvement.
    7. Ability to multitask and manage a varied workload while working across multiple time zones.
    8. The drive and curiosity to continually dig for insight and answers that drive product quality and innovation.
    9. Experience working in small entrepreneurial environment & a larger company is preferred.
    10. Proven proficiency with variety of computer software applications in word processing, spreadsheets, database and presentation software (Microsoft Office).  Knowledge of Adobe Illustrator & willingness to learn
    11. Openness to traveling, both domestically and internationally (up to 20%).    Willingness to live overseas is a plus.

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