Materials Specialist Footwear Innovation (Upper)

Date posted:
Company: On
Location: Zürich (ZH), N/A
Job Type: Full-Time

At a Glance:

As an Innovation Material Specialist for Footwear, uppers you will support in reinventing, creating and challenging performance materiality as the world knows it, to take ON to the next level of innovation. You will lead projects with fearless exploration of materiality and technology through material led product creation.  You will work closely with the Footwear Polymers team, Apparel and Accessories innovation teams as well as the inline materials team while reporting into the Innovation Materials lead- footwear uppers. 

Your Team:

On’s Innovation team is responsible for On’s future innovation, out-of-the-box thinking and the outstanding athlete-informed technology that differentiates On footwear from all other footwear product in the market. By joining the On Innovation Team, you will have the opportunity to be part of an agile and interdisciplinary team of experts in the areas of engineering and sports science.

Your Mission:

  • Support the Lead and wider teams in actioning the Global Material Innovation strategy for footwear uppers. 
  • Support in sourcing outstanding material innovations and allow for material-led product creation, teaming blue sky creative thinking with technical problem solving.
  • Work across all material constructions in depth as well as deep diving into machinery, yarns, processes and colourisation. Utilise strong material knowledge parallel to exploring the unknown to create world leading material innovations.
  • Research exhaustively analogous industry processes/technologies/materials extensively to identify innovation opportunities.
  • Align and adapt processes that seamlessly integrate material technologies into the current On material eco-system.
  • Evaluate and aim for material-specific targets in regards to the On sustainability roadmap as well as identify opportunities for sustainable innovation.
  • Build and foster strong relationships and communicative channels with material suppliers and chemical vendors across the globe.
  • Liaise with Design, Product Development, (HQ & ASIA) Product Management, Innovation, and Sustainability teams, as well as the Testing team.

Your Story:

  • Bachelor’s Degree (minimum) in Footwear Textile Sciences, Textile Engineering/Technology/Design or equivalent from a global leading university or related field.
  • 4+ years of global experience as a Footwear Materials Developer/Engineer in Performance Footwear industry.
  • Heightened experience in project management from creative direction through to production.
  • Affinity for Product design and technology, particularly in the technical performance category, with an eye for aesthetics and key awareness of trends both within the industry and analogous industries. 
  • Proven track record of implementing innovation though performance materials with ability to think and act strategically.
  • Highly attentive to detail and have the ability to build, organise, and create effective presentations and strategy documents.
  • Excellent understanding of the industry’s processes with ability to work autonomously parallel to cross-functional collaboration.
  • Collaborative spirit with diverse stakeholders as well as superior communication skills (verbal and written English).
  • Able to balance creativity with organisation and discipline in a fast-paced environment.
  • Talent to deal with change and bring entrepreneurial spirit when facing unexpected challenges.

What we offer:

We offer a dynamic, challenging and sportive environment that has been ranked as the ‘fastest growing sports company’ of its time. With offices across the globe, we are an international team who is hungry to innovate and build something incredible. We foster an active environment where each individual thrives for excellence and can achieve their full potential. This is where your work matters, you’re hands-on and your team members are amongst the very best in their respective disciplines and fields. 

If you are driven to bring On to the next level, curious about the opportunity and want to be part of our growing team send us your application, and join the ONiverse!


On is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We are committed to creating a work environment that is fair and inclusive, where all decisions related to recruitment, advancement, and retention are free of discrimination. We are requesting that you provide sensitive demographic information such as gender identity and race/ethnicity to help us ensure that we are creating equitable and fair experiences for all potential future team members. You are not required to provide this demographic information and this information will in no way impact your eligibility for hire.