Returning Candidate?

Manager of Systems Design

Manager of Systems Design

Req No. 
Job Locations 
Regular Full-Time

More information about this job

Who we are

The Spaceship Company (TSC) is an affiliate of Virgin Galactic as a space-system manufacturing organization. Headquartered at Mojave Air and Space Port in Mojave, California, it is building and testing a fleet of WhiteKnightTwo carrier aircraft and SpaceShipTwo reusable spaceships that, together, form Virgin Galactic’s human spaceflight system. Like many Virgin companies across the world, its team of over 350 talented and dedicated engineers, technicians and professionals are drawn together by a willingness to disrupt and challenge the status quo and deliver innovative aerospace solutions to our customers’ needs. TSC’s extensive capabilities encompass preliminary vehicle design and analysis, manufacturing, ground testing, flight testing and post-delivery support.


Our Values
TSC and the greater Virgin Organization have a relaxed and informal culture that encourages individuality and innovation.  You will be motivated, enterprising and enthusiastic.  Company culture is such that you need to be able to “check your ego at the door”, be a self-starter and possess a sense of humility.  You will work well under pressure and thrive on being given challenges and responsibility.  You will communicate clearly and be confident and persuasive. You will have a high level of integrity and understand the need of complete confidentiality.


Who You Are

TSC is seeking a motivated Manager of Systems Design.  “Systems Design” includes: all mechanical systems, pneumatics systems, and hydraulic systems.  The primary task of this role will be to provide leadership to the systems design department at TSC.  This diverse role will require you to oversee the development and delivery of all systems requirements, architectures, designs, standards, processes, and documentation activities within TSC.  This engineer will provide leadership, mentoring, and career development guidance to the systems design department.  This engineer will participate in the systems design process for each program.  This engineer will be the senior-most MRB engineer representing systems design.  The engineers within the systems department are matrixed to various projects so this person is responsible for ensuring the various projects are supported with the right skill sets and number of engineers.   This role involves working closely with the other engineering disciplines as well as the vehicle leads to ensure our flight vehicles are safe to fly, and meet all systems design requirements.  This role functions in a fast-paced flight test environment.  This person will need to be able to support work on off-Fridays and weekends as required.


Your Mission

  • Provide technical, management, and career leadership to the systems design department
  • Plan for and recruit to build a world-class systems design department
  • Assisting with the preparation of technical and commercial proposals
  • Define and develop the processes that support new systems design and modifications to flight vehicles
  • Develop plans that ensure the manufacturing and flight test departments are fully supported 24/7 as required with appropriate skill sets
  • Maintain and develop appropriate library of standards and references
  • Assist the IT manager in ensuring that the systems design group has the necessary hardware and software to meet client expectations for project delivery
  • Maintain high level of team competency of software through continued use and training

What you bring



  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, with a concentration in Aeronautical, Astronautical, Aerospace, or Mechanical Engineering.  Master’s degree is not required but is desirable.
  • 10+ years of relevant industry experience
  • Must have excellent technical capability and ability to tackle complex systems design challenges
  • Proven ability to: manage multiple projects concurrently, manage teams and external consultants, work under pressure, meet tight deadlines.
  • Systems MRB experience is desirable
  • Experience with CATIA V5 software and kinematics is highly desired 
  • Competency in first order design principles is required
  • Strong working knowledge of air vehicle systems, structures/systems integration, engineering design, and the drawing release process
  • Experience defining engineering associated with integrating complex systems in composite aircraft
  • Knowledge of manufacturing methods for various materials (composite layup, metal machining, 3D printing, bonded assembly, mechanical assembly)
  • Excellent analytical and decision-making skills
  • GD&T experience
  • Experience with Product Lifecycle Management tools (PLM software), manufacturing ERP systems, requirements management tools and configuration management
  • Excellent verbal and written communication, excellent computer skills including Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook



ITAR Requirements

To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by ITAR (22 CFR §120.15) or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State.


The Spaceship Company is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with The Spaceship Company 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, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.



Connect With Us!

Not ready to apply? Connect with us for general consideration.