Software Engineering, Design
San Francisco, CA, USA
Posted on Wednesday, July 12, 2023
Peak Design makes radical, meticulously-engineered gear for detail-obsessed people. Our backpacks, travel bags, camera gear, and phone accessories are used dang-near everywhere. If you’ve visited Machu Picchu, Tokyo, or an REI store in the last 10 years, you’ve been within ogling distance of a Peak Design product.
Alongside our award-winning gear is a brand that truly reflects who we are as people—passionate about design, deeply caring about our environmental and social impact, unafraid to speak up, radically transparent, and generally down to clown. Whether we’re explaining a product, running a sale, launching a nonprofit, sponsoring a film, or razzing the biggest company on Earth, we do it with our trademark honesty, warmth, and wit. Through our products and our brand, we aim to create delight, and leave this world better than how we found it.
ABOUT THE JOB
This is a new design engineering role on one of our small but mighty product teams. Day to day, you’ll own the mechanical development and testing of new and existing products on our camera accessories roadmap, including clips, straps, and mounts.
Qualified candidates could be current mechanical engineers, product designers, or industrial designers. A design engineering role at Peak Design is a broad thing - we thrive on a holistic product design process, meaning that the person we hire would be responsible for everything from early ideation and concept development, to prototyping, development builds, production ramp, and sustaining quality improvement. Our design engineers interface with industrial designers, engineering project managers, and overseas contract manufacturers to drive the full product lifecycle from conception to production. Most companies split these roles into several people (or even several teams), but we think full ownership makes for more passionate and invested product designers, and thus better products. It’s also just more fun than doing the same thing every day.
What You'll Do
- Conduct market research for new product definition, and establish design requirements and ideation of new product concepts.
- Assemble prototypes in-house using Peak's prototyping equipment, or via external prototyping services.
- Partner with industrial designers on ID directions, and implement them in a parametric CAD stack.
- Formulate, document, and execute test procedures for products in development.
- Manage and organize prototype, EVT, DVT, PVT, and mass production builds.
- Build proficiency in Onshape (CAD) and establish a clear organizational structure for new and old models.
- Guide outsourced CAD resources in China or Vietnam for latter stage design.
- Undergraduate or graduate degree in Mechanical Engineering, Product Design, Industrial Design, or comparable degree or experience.
- 2+ years of post-grad work experience doing some form of mechanical design.
- Someone who uses and cares a lot about gear - specifically camera (DSLR + mirrorless) and photography equipment.
- Experience owning mechanical parts and assemblies from prototyping through mass production for high volume products that have successfully shipped to customers.
- Ability to travel to China or other parts of Asia to visit our suppliers 1-3 times per year.
- Local to the San Francisco Bay Area (or willing to relocate for this role). Willing to work from our office/workshop in the Dogpatch a minimum of 3 days per week (i.e. this is not a remote role, though we do maintain flexibility).
- The following list represents a range of traits and experience that would help make you highly effective and impactful in this role:
- Technical aptitude and appetite. You lean into technical challenges and are curious and excited to go deep on a technical topic to build your knowledge.
- Effective at creating and maintaining complex 3D models in any major 3D CAD system (we use Onshape).
- Mechanical aptitude, both hands-on and theoretical. You’ve worked extensively with moving parts and mechanisms.
- Inclination toward hands-on prototyping. You love to create actual functioning prototypes and products, not just design them virtually.
- Familiarity with a few (or all) of the following manufacturing processes: CNC milling, die casting, injection molding, stamping, extrusion, and assembly.
- Familiarity with various surface finishes: anodization, powder coating, painting, plating.
- Familiarity with basic materials properties: aluminum alloys, steels, rubbers, plastics.
- Familiarity with phase-gates manufacturing system (Proto, EVT, DVT, PVT, Mass Production).
- Familiarity with soft goods and textiles. You know your way around a sewing machine and can make simple sewn or laminated patterns and prototypes.
- Previous experience with vendor management, including travel to China. Experience bringing up a manufacturing line and problem solving in-person from EVT through MP.
- Working knowledge of supply chain structure and ability to navigate communication at various levels of the supply chain.
- You have strong opinions about the products that you use in your life and enjoy debating what makes these products great.
- You possess hustle, humility, and a growth mindset. You want to grow tremendously as an engineer by designing and shipping many products.
- You’re a systems thinker and love optimizing workflows and efficiency. You are capable of navigating surprise roadblocks with rational thinking and problem solving.
Here’s what you can expect:
1) Written application, including a short answer technical screen - online.
2) Technical screen - phone - 30 min.
3) Take home assignment (1-2 hrs), followed by a review presentation and interview - Zoom - 60 min.
4) Final round interviews - in-person at Peak Design headquarters - 3 hrs.
WHAT WE OFFER
- 100% covered employee premiums for medical, dental, and vision insurance
- Health Savings Account (HSA) and Flexible Spending Account (FSA) options
- Life/AD&D, long-term disability, and short-term disability coverage
- Generous mental health and fertility health reimbursement options
- 401(k) plan with employer matching
- Unlimited PTO policy, 12 paid company holidays, and flexible work schedules
- 100% paid parental leave
- Peak Design product and exclusive industry discounts
- Monthly cell phone reimbursement
- Pre-tax commuter benefits
- Annual career development stipend
- Charitable donation program with employer matching
- Quarterly onsite or offsite collaboration weeks with the whole Peak Design team
Thanks to the folks at Outside Magazine, we can tell you that Peak Design is an objectively great place to work. Why? We provide opportunities to go deep in your craft, work both autonomously and collaboratively, drive your professional growth, and recharge with flexible Fridays and unlimited paid time off -- the saucy list of perks and benefits goes on. So, how do we maintain this exquisite way of working while also pulling off an exceptionally thoughtful brand and product line? A close-knit culture that values transparency, community, trust, and questioning the status quo.
Many employees find the way we run our business to be radically different from what they’ve experienced elsewhere. You might call it the opposite of micromanagement: employees are often expected to set their own priorities and roadmaps for their areas of the business. Who thrives here? Self-starters. Question-askers. People who make their own to-do lists. Folks who can do a little bit of everything. People who aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty with nitty-gritty details in order to see a vision through.
If you prefer to work in a more traditional corporate environment, Peak Design might not be the place for you. But if you’re pickin’ up what we’re putting down, we look forward to hearing from you!
DIVERSITY, EQUITY, INCLUSION & BELONGING
At Peak Design we believe a diverse team is an innovative team and something worth celebrating. A range of perspectives and backgrounds creates a stronger and more creative work environment (not to mention more fun). We’re committed to equality and inclusivity across race, gender, age, religion, identity, and experience.
Some candidates may see a long list of job requirements and feel discouraged because they don’t match every single bullet point – we strongly encourage you to apply anyway! If what we do resonates with you, and you feel excited and able to contribute, we’re equally stoked for the opportunity to engage with you.
Peak Design provides reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities in the job application and interview process (including if you have any difficulty using our online system). If you need such an accommodation, please complete the application form below.