Director/Head of Commercial Operations

Corporate Overview

Argonaut Manufacturing Services Inc. is a contract manufacturing organization (CMO) headquartered in Carlsbad, CA. The company is dedicated to serving highly innovative companies in the biopharmaceutical, molecular diagnostics, and controls, & life sciences industries. Argonaut is a full service, cost-effective partner providing complete solutions in the areas of formulation, filling, lyophilization, final kitting of reagents and consumables, and global distribution. Argonaut provides quality and regulatory expertise to assure the highest in quality manufacturing and supply chain excellence.

Position and Scope

This leadership position is a pivotal role for Argonaut. The ideal candidate will be accountable for the proposal and contracting process and optimize it for scalability and success. Initially, this position will support the team full time in a proposal and contracting capacity ensuring a smooth flow of client proposals. Longer-term, this role will take over leadership of the sales administration, commercial analytics, and sales force effectiveness tools. Over time, this leadership role will recruit exceptional candidates to support these functions as the company grows. This candidate will be part of the Commercial Leadership team and will work with the Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) to continue to develop the Corporate Strategy of Argonaut. This individual will need to understand the opportunities for our sales pipeline and be prepared to support the executive commercial Strategic Partnership sales directors. A consultative commitment to high levels of execution with the goal of aggressive growth for the company is required. The ultimate success factor is the ability to achieve quarterly and annual revenue goals with continued double to triple-digit growth of the business.

Specific Responsibilities

The successful candidate will:

  • Initially, work 100% of the time training and building the proposals and contracts department with the current leader that handles the function.  This will be an individual contributor role that over time and mastery leveraging systems and processes, will turn into a leadership role.  The goal will be to have working knowledge within 1 quarter and accelerate to mastery knowledge within 2-3 quarters from start date.
  • Create new tools that will make the process more streamlined and efficient both for the proposal and contracts function as well as the commercial sales directors and other cross-functional groups
  • Once there is a clear flow of contracts and the leader has taken over the proposal and contracts function with the quality and service level equivalent or better than current, there will be a transition of the sales administration group to this leader
  • For sales administration, there are currently two sales administrators that will report to this leader.  The goal will be to ensure a smooth flow of client contracts, orders, and shipments, including developing reporting for the CCO to share with the company.  The leader is expected to review and optimize this function, as necessary, for tools, techniques, reporting, and protocols
  • Once both the proposal and contracts function and the sales administration function is running smoothly, the leader will advise the CCO on analytics.  An agreement to the appropriate reporting will be made, and by the end of 2021, there should be clear analytics provided for each sales territory, client, sales admin function, as well as quoting and contracts function, and other functions as required
  • The last part of this role to be implemented will be optimization and/or improvements of the sales force effectiveness for scaling the Argonaut commercial team over the next 3 years to > $100-250M business
  • Cultivate a strong and effective partnership with the Operations, Project Management, and Finance teams to build the story of client success and support partnering opportunities tied to commercial opportunities
  • The sales team will be the primary internal client, and this individual will be responsible for a high level of satisfaction for this group
  • Provide the analytics and reporting for quarterly business reviews, and support reporting for business development opportunities, pipeline, competitive analysis, and others in various company forums
  • Support the CCO as needed for board reports and analytics
  • Annual or more frequent list price updates, and support tiered pricing development and documentation including partnering with finance to update in ERP system
  • Pricing excellence – ensuring the highest margin in alignment with the goals of the company and with direction from CCO and commercial strategy.  Conduct price sensitivity analysis for current services as well as new services to find the maximal profit and price setting
  • Sales Force Effectiveness – Support maintenance and improvement of systems used for commercial sales and business development, including PandaDoc e-proposal system templates and maintenance/administrator;; Jira; and Netsuite.  As appropriate, manage contract personnel to assist in the development of these systems or reporting

Position Requirements and Experience

The desired candidate will have:

  • An advanced degree (M.S., PhD, or MBA) or significant exposure to CMO sales
  • Spent time in Biotech / Biopharma in contracts and proposal development
  • Investment banking / venture / consulting and small to mid-sized company exposure as Argonaut is a Venture owned firm
  • Held cross-functional leadership roles with results linked to conflict/issue resolution, time-critical management, negotiation, consensus-building across functions, and financial accountability
  • Fluency in both the life science and diagnostics market AND the biopharma drug development process and have prior exposure to commercialization of both in the CMO service market
  • Extensive experience in ERP reporting, building pricing and contracts tools and analytics, improving tools and processes, building and supporting working and executive reports
  • Systems experience with Netsuite ERP,, Jira, PandaDoc, and other standard business software tools (Excel, PowerPoint, Word, etc.)
  • Excellent interpersonal, organizational, and communication skills. Effective at communications at all organizational levels including leading and successfully growing a team, communication with peer and executive level, and aligning to the company and specifically the commercial organization culture
  • Have a track record demonstrating your success working in a matrix and direct leadership roles
  • Analytical, challenge-focused, and have a value creation mindset with a bias toward action
  • Willing to roll up your sleeves and dive deep into commercial operations issues that may inform strategic thinking, without compromising functional integrity
  • Extensive experience with deal modeling and deal valuation
  • Integrity always
  • Resilient, highly self‐motivated, self‐directed, and love details
  • Be a driver, will not stop until the job is done, and set goals high for yourself and achieve higher than expectations
  • Client-focused
  • Can delegate, hold other functions accountable, can escalate as needed, and not be distracted from your primary job scope
  • Proven work experience as a Sales Administrator or Sales support agent
  • Hands on experience with CRM software and MS Office (MS Excel a must)
  • Understanding of sales performance metrics
  • A team player with high level of dedication
  • Ability to work under strict deadlines
  • Ability to take on new tasks to completion with minimal direct guidance
  • An interest in the sales process and helping the organization to improve
  • Background in biotech business development and sales (preferred)
  • Executive Level experience (preferred)

Argonaut Manufacturing Services, Inc. is proud to be an equal opportunity employer committed to providing employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability, or any other class protected by Federal, State or local laws. Argonaut complies with all employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act and all must have the authorization to work in the US.

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