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Astellas Pharma Director of Operations in Seattle, Washington

Universal Cells is focused on the development and commercialization of stem cell and regenerative medicine therapies. We conduct clinical-grade gene editing of stem cells and have a major effort in R&D. We design and produce stem cells that avoid rejection, and we engineer cells with improved therapeutic properties, all through our world-class gene editing platform.

Our goal is to provide cells for regenerative medicine applications that can treat all patients. Through internal R&D and our corporate partnerships, we are pursuing a diverse range of disease indications, including blindness, cancer, vascular insufficiency, and autoimmune diseases.

Universal Cells (UCI) is announcing a Director of Operations opportunity at their facility in Seattle, WA .


The primary purpose of the Director of Operations is to oversee all daily operations for Supply Chain, Warehouse, Front Office, Environmental Health & Safety, Manage external vendors and contracts. Provide process improvements and efficiencies with operational processes, policies & procedures; and direct the daily operations of team members.

Universal Cells is a wholly owned subsidiary of Astellas Pharma. Astellas is an R&D-driven global pharmaceutical company whose philosophy is to contribute to the improvement of people's health around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products.

Essential Job Responsibilities:

  • Participates in establishing strategic plans and objectives, on administrative or operational matters and ensuring effective achievement of objectives.

  • Works with the management team, develops and implements a long-range facilities plan to reach objectives, and ensures that tactical facilities decisions are consistent with this plan.

  • In conjunction with Facility Manager and/or other relevant stakeholders, prepares plans, budgets and schedules facilities modifications including estimates, quotes, layout, contracts calibrations and maintenance requirements with outside vendors.

  • Works with the Material Management in maintaining effective and efficient supply chain efforts for research and cGMP compliance of materials and supplies. Familiar with controlled accounting policies and procedure

  • Working with Management team to ensure ordering, invoice reconciliation, and payment of vendors is timely and in accordance with Astellas programs

  • Acts as a liaison with building property management on leasehold issues including tenant improvements, HVAC issues, etc.

  • In conjunction with EH&S:

  • Develops, implements and manages EH&S (environmental, health and safety) policies/procedures, benchmarks safety programs and techniques to ensure compliance, injury prevention, and risk mitigation.

  • Administers office and laboratory safety and security plans and procedures, continually monitoring locations to ensure they remain safe, secure and well-maintained.

  • Ensures and maintains OSHA and other regulatory compliance (environmental, health & security) in facilities and coordinates inspections. Manage agency inspections and prepare deliverables for the response to inspection reports.

  • Conducts job site assessments, focusing on unsafe conditions and unsafe work behaviors; ensure appropriate action is taken to correct deficiencies.

  • Performs Injury and Illness investigations, root cause analysis, data trending, program audits and laboratory safety and compliance inspections. Investigates accidents to identify their causes and find ways to prevent recurrences. Investigates, prepares, and forwards, as required, reports on injuries to appropriate agencies.

  • Maintains Company OSHA/EPA hazardous waste records.

  • Ensures that all required written programs (e.g., hazard communication, contingency plan, lockout/tagout, waste minimization plan, hearing conservation, blood-borne pathogens, etc.) are properly documented.

  • Establishes budget and accurate spending projections, manages within capital and operating resources and identifies significant capital spend requirements during budget preparation.

  • In conjunction with Facility Manager, oversees and helps to coordinate year-end shutdown to include preventative maintenance, major projects and lab modifications.

  • Organizes and prepares technical documentation necessary to ensure cGMP compliance of all facilities operations.

  • Responsible for long-range planning and delivery of multiple change programs on time including project performance, risk management, administration, financial management and issue resolution.

  • Provides managerial, strategic, and tactical leadership to team members.

  • Perform other duties as assigned or special projects as needed

Quantitative Dimensions:

  • The Director of Operations establishes budget and accurate spending projections, manages within capital and operating resources and identifies significant capital spend requirements during budget preparation.

Organizational Context:

  • The Director of Operations will report to Sr. Director of Operational Excellence. This role manages a team of 5 operations and facilities staff.



  • BA/BS degree from accredited institution or equivalent in related experience.

  • 5-7 years' experience in Facilities Operations and Supply Chain Management.

  • Demonstrated ability to form effective, high-impact partnerships with peer leaders and internal employees as customers.

  • Outstanding communicator, with a shown ability to use a wide variety of techniques to communicate internally to an organization.

  • Strong organizational skills and high level of attention to detail; with the ability to coordinate multiple large and diverse projects simultaneously.

  • Previous experience in managing budgets, A/P review and approvals, review and approve contracts.

  • Proven capability to appropriately challenge status quo, drive and support innovation- including new ideas to streamline and enhance processes rather than solely implement current tactics;

  • Strong computer skills including advanced use of Microsoft office applications, SAP, Ariba, Oracle

  • Leadership, project management and team building skills - Ability to lead projects and initiatives

  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision.


  • Degree in Engineering preferred, but not required for this role.

  • Experience working in Biotech/Pharm industry.

  • Experience in Oracle, SAP and Ariba spend management.


Category Facilities

Astellas is committed to equality of opportunity in all aspects of employment. EOE including Disability/Protected Veterans