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Sanergy Research & Development Jobs Kenya

Research & Development Job, Other Professions,

Sanergy is an award-winning social enterprise that employs the circular economy approach to treat and convert all forms of urban waste into organic fertilizer and insect-based animal protein. Sanergy manufactures and distributes Evergrow Organic Fertilizer and Kuzapro Insect Based Animal Protein, under the Farm Star brand. We are an increasingly sophisticated, highly intricate organization with many moving parts. Sanergy seeks accomplished, driven individuals who will make substantive contributions to the organization. 

Research and Development is responsible for creating and improving products and technologies to enable the profitable conversion of organic wastes into valuable byproducts. We take ideas from the whiteboard to the factory floor; as a team we are involved in ideation and design, product testing, trialing and transfer of technology into Operations.

In the R&D Improve team, we focus on developing our existing product lines and improving volume, quality and cost with process and product changes. 

The Opportunity

Sanergy has just finished construction of a large scale waste treatment facility capable of converting organic wastes into insect protein, organic fertilizer and briquettes. We have been able to successfully produce briquettes that can be used by industrial boilers to replace traditional solid fuel products. We are now looking for ways to optimise to provide the best value product for our customers while hitting target formulation costs and performance.

Role Mission

Sanergy aims to rapidly scale it’s briquetting product line, at a positive margin while maintaining product performance. This role will support that ambition by acting as the owner of all technical product development of briquettes. The role-holder will work closely with Operations and Engineering Support teams to deliver formulation and process changes, as well as with sales teams to ensure product quality meets customer expectations.

Key duties and responsibilities

Project management

  • Lead R&D projects for the briquettes product line, including formulation and process development
  • Work with R&D manager to develop project scope, timeline, budget and risk management plan
  • Develop and maintain a detailed short term plan on a rolling 4-6 week horizon
  • Develop and maintain, with support from the R&D Manager, a rough-cut medium term plan on a rolling 3 month horizon
  • Coordinate and deliver high-quality work packages to an agreed timeline
  • Coordinate cross-functionally  for the successful implementation of the project in the factory
  • Inputs into stakeholder management through stakeholder engagement, interviews, presentations and updates, for all projects
  • Input to project learnings and evaluation documents
  • Requests resources or support where project progress is slowing or roadblocked

Product and process development

  • Responsible for improving profitability and product quality for briquettes
  • Owns, prioritises and updates pool of hypotheses in briquetting
  • Conduct regular literature reviews, competition/peer engagements and process data reviews to remain up to date in briquetting and solid fuels technology, and generate further research leads
  • Conduct bench scale research to determine feasibility of new project ideas
  • Conduct pilot scale research to determine feasibility of technology at larger scale and capability
  • Land new specifications in factory, with complete handover documentation and training for Operations team
  • Execute research that supports the continuous improvement of existing processes
  • Responsible for owning and developing specifications for products and processes
  • Perform cost/benefit analyses to determine marginal profitability of improvements

Execution of trials

  • Leads design, execution and analysis of trials in technical workstreams
  • Ensures relevant stakeholders are involved in trials, including preparation, execution, wind-down and communication of results
  • Prepares trial protocols
  • Plans and coordinates resource allocation for trials
  • Coordinates Research Assistants, Trial Associates and R&D Operators to execute trials
  • Coordinate trial execution, data collection, logistics, wind down and analysis
  • Completes trial reports that are easy to read, thorough, and up-to-date
  • Present findings in post-mortems that draw sound conclusions and make clear recommendations
  • Use general analytical and statistical (quantitative and qualitative) approaches to analyze experimental data to arrive at logical conclusions making use of appropriate tools and procedures
  • Develops new methods, with support from R&D Analysts and R&D Manager, if appropriate


Systems and processes

  • Proactively identifies and escalates issues in trial and R&D processes that reduce the quality of work and speed of execution
  • Resolves assigned issues on time, in full

Quality support

  • R&D representative for RCAs focused on process and product issues in briquetting
  • Support Quality improvement projects in briquetting

Operations support

  • Supports resolution of formulation and specification related issues
  • Proctively reviews Operational performance data relevant to briquettes
  • Initiates and supports investigations in briquetting for Operations and R&D trials
  • Actively interact with the Operations team to identify issues in production early for mitigation measures

Professional development

  • Initiate, attend and contribute to update discussions (with the project and team lead)
  • Initiate feedback discussions with team lead & stakeholders
  • Identify own professional development needs and seeks opportunities/executes agreed actions, including training, coaching, mentoring and workplace activities
  • Initiate development discussions with team lead and skip level management
  • Initiate and lead prioritization discussions
  • Maintains personal development plan with support from R&D Manager

Team development

  • Provides regular feedback to reports, peers and managers
  • Identifies issues with team and process and proposes solutions
  • Share subject matter knowledge with R&D team members by taking part in brain-storming sessions as requested
  • Participates in team culture activities


  • Degree in Science- or Engineering-related field
  • Highly preferable: experience with briquettes and other solid fuels, ideally from waste sources
  • Proficiency with Office suite tools or equivalent especially in Excel skills: you have used Excel or an equivalent tool to collect and analyse data, build models
  • Strong problem-solving skills: you have shown the ability to abstract and solve ambiguous, challenging problems
  • Effective time management, organizational, and prioritization skills: you have demonstrable ability to manage projects and use basic project management skills
  • Attention to detail: you have shown that you are thorough, detail-oriented, don’t make assumptions, check and validate yours and others’ work, you catch typos and errors

How To apply

please submit a cover letter clearly indicating your available start date (include notice period), your interest in this role, and your resume/CV that includes a list of three referees by 31st March 2021. Please note that applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

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