Supplier Development Engineer, Aviation (Starlink)



hawthorne, ca, usa
Posted on Tuesday, July 18, 2023

SpaceX was founded under the belief that a future where humanity is out exploring the stars is fundamentally more exciting than one where we are not. Today, SpaceX is actively developing the technologies to make this possible, with the ultimate goal of enabling human life on Mars.


SpaceX demands a new type of supply chain for our newest project, Starlink. We require our suppliers to provide premium quality with rapidly evolving designs at increasingly ambitious volumes. We are actively looking for candidates who possess comprehensive knowledge of NPI manufacturing and quality tools and have unrelenting motivation to enable suppliers for success.

This is a technical position that requires practical experience in the area of specialty with the materials, processes and parts used in mechanical assemblies for aerospace products. The ideal candidate will have a broad understanding of these products with the desire and capability to take on new challenges in unfamiliar areas to help enable our mission to Mars.


Act as the technical point of contact, solving emergent challenges at suppliers and mitigating risk to the manufacturing system by addressing high-impact manufacturing and quality challenges

  • Conduct design for manufacturing (DFM) reviews to ensure manufacturability
  • Provide leadership for New Product Introduction (NPI) at suppliers
  • Identify, audit and onboard new suppliers; perform surveillance and diagnostic audits on incumbent suppliers
  • Industrialize new materials and/or processes by collaborating with suppliers to implement the required capital improvements and develop their capability to scale-up these new technologies including part qualification (PPAP)
  • Collaborate with Design, Quality, Manufacturing, and Certification teams to determine the ideal performance specifications and supplier metrics.
  • Validate supplier corrective actions involving design and/or process changes to ensure they are robust, sustainable, and implemented for similar potential concerns across manufacturing lines and/or suppliers.
  • Lead containment activities, working with cross-functional counterparts on scope, path forward and ultimate resolution
  • Demonstrate innovation, technical excellence, attention to detail, self-direction and courage
  • Drive for results and customer satisfaction by collaborating with teams, leading projects, and continuously driving improvement in the supply base


  • Bachelor’s degree in an engineering or a STEM discipline
  • 1+ years of manufacturing, mechanical, supply chain, or business project experience (school projects, clubs, or internships qualify)


  • Ability to consistently make timely risk-based decisions in an ambiguous environment
  • Experience working in highly regulated environments with experience working under FAA oversight and with AS9100 preferred
  • Familiarity with FAA procedures and processes such as Supplemental Type Certifications (STC) and Parts Manufacturing Approval (PMA)
  • Deep understanding of Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing (GD&T), machining processes, and harness manufacturing. Previous experience with aviation components.
  • Ability to communicate and direct supplier activities at the management level
  • Knowledge of quality processes - production part approval process (PPAP), advanced product quality planning (APQP), first article inspection reports (FAIR), metrology tools and concepts etc
  • Experience with quality systems (ISO 9000/TS/AS9100/NADCAP)
  • Knowledge of statistical techniques and methods, e.g., design of experiments, Six Sigma, Statistical Process Control (SPC), etc
  • Knowledge of Lean concepts
  • Experience with sharing information and influencing others across organizational lines, internally and externally
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills, ability to make presentations to suppliers, team members and management
  • Experience with MRP or ERP systems
  • Master’s degree in engineering or business
  • Experience with high volume manufacturing


  • Ability to work extended hours, some nights and weekends when required to meet critical deadlines
  • Ability to travel: average of 25-40% travel, possibly on short notice; valid driver’s license mandatory


Pay range:

Supplier Development Engineer/Level I: $95,000.00 - $115,000.00/per year
Supplier Development Engineer/Level II: $110,000.00 - $130,000.00/per year

Your actual level and base salary will be determined on a case-by-case basis and may vary based on the following considerations: job-related knowledge and skills, education, and experience.

Base salary is just one part of your total rewards package at SpaceX. You may also be eligible for long-term incentives, in the form of company stock, stock options, or long-term cash awards, as well as potential discretionary bonuses and the ability to purchase additional stock at a discount through an Employee Stock Purchase Plan. You will also receive access to comprehensive medical, vision, and dental coverage, access to a 401(k) retirement plan, short and long-term disability insurance, life insurance, paid parental leave, and various other discounts and perks. You may also accrue 3 weeks of paid vacation and will be eligible for 10 or more paid holidays per year. Exempt employees are eligible for 5 days of sick leave per year.


  • To conform to U.S. Government export regulations, applicant must be a (i) U.S. citizen or national, (ii) U.S. lawful, permanent resident (aka green card holder), (iii) Refugee under 8 U.S.C. § 1157, or (iv) Asylee under 8 U.S.C. § 1158, or be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR here.

SpaceX is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with SpaceX is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.

Applicants wishing to view a copy of SpaceX’s Affirmative Action Plan for veterans and individuals with disabilities, or applicants requiring reasonable accommodation to the application/interview process should notify the Human Resources Department at (310) 363-6000.