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Production Director - TopHat Facades


Derby, GB

TopHat is an award-winning modular home manufacturer which designs and engineers beautiful, green, new homes as part of a revolution in UK home building. Formed in 2016, the company currently operates from a factory in Derbyshire, employing over 300 people and has delivered over 300 homes to date.  The business is privately owned, having secured major investment over multiple rounds from Goldman Sachs; the top tier investment bank, Persimmon; the FTSE 100 listed major UK homebuilder and Aviva, the FTSE 100 listed insurance and property investment leader. 


Alongside our existing operation, TopHat is very well progressed in developing the largest modular manufacturing operation in the UK, and the largest manufacturing operation of any kind this year.  Based in Corby, our state of the art robotic manufacturing facility will open in 2024.  The size of 11 football pitches, it will deliver one precision engineered home every single working hour, and will employ over 1,000 people.  The factory itself is now built and watertight, and our robotic production line is going through performance trials in Germany.


Our homes are extremely environmentally efficient, primarily because they are built in timber, and also because we are ahead of the curve in using energy technology.  We are already performing in excess of Future Homes Standards.  As a result, owning a TopHat home for 60 years saves the same amount of carbon as living car-free for 30 years, and we require 27 times less carbon to build our homes in the first place.   


TopHat has a patented brick façade product which we are particularly proud of.  It is lighter and more environmentally friendly than brick alternatives, and can be installed in a fraction of the time, with a sizeable cost saving.  The quality of this product, when installed, makes it impossible to differentiate visually from a normal wall.  The huge range of styles gives architects access to design options which have historically not been justified economically.  We provide this product on all of our own homes, and also sell it privately.

Like our homes, the facades product is in such demand that we are expanding our operation rapidly.  Alongside this we are investing millions of pounds in automating the facades operation so that we can offer customers the volumes and repeatable quality that they demand.  This part of our business sits at a particularly exciting time in its development, having proven its value with real customers, yet being at the beginning of its automation and scaling-up journey.  This gives applicants the comfort of a product they can be proud of, with the excitement of being able to grow with the business.

The role:

  • Deliver the day to day operation of the Facades business as described above, by ensuring close working within the operations team and collaboration with supporting teams such as technical, design and process engineering 
  • Deliver the operational growth plan of the business  
  • Provide leadership and coaching to all staff within the Facades manufacturing operation, ensuring values/behaviours are consistently good and that all staff are treated fairly and with respect and are supported in development opportunities (HR support is provided by the core TopHat operation) 
  • Ensure full training/SOPs are in place for all manufacturing processes 
  • Drive a Lean culture, ensuring quality/cost/delivery principles are clear and transparent within the organisation 
  • Work closely with TopHat Facades’ internal and external customers to ensure pipelines are understood and requirements are met, including product supply and support 
  • Plan resource and material purchasing according to pipeline requirements, so the operation grows smoothly and in line with demand  
  • Work with the Facades Technical Director, as a peer, to ensure product innovation (particularly automation) is implemented into the manufacturing process in a quick and efficient manner 
  • Liaise with the MD and Technical Director to support any sales efforts 
  • Lead the Health and Safety Function for the operation (with support from TopHat’s core H&S operation), driving a H&S first culture for all staff, customers and other visitors/stakeholders  
  • Build an outsourced installation and support capability for our product  
  • Deliver targeted materials cost reduction and labour efficiencies  
  • Follow, contribute to, and promote TopHat Health & Safety, Ethical, Environmental and Quality standards  
  • Perform any other duties as deemed necessary to meet the needs of the business 

What are we looking for in a candidate?

  • Experience of working in a leadership role within manufacturing and understands lean manufacturing principles and how to implement them
  • Can drive and support operational change effectively 
  • Experience in dealing with automation and has experience in implementing automation across key areas. 
  • Construction experience or experience within Facades would be desirable
  • A creative thinker, someone who looks outside the box to develop new strategies.
  • Able to resolve conflict by managing differences of opinion.  Using consensus and collaboration to debate and resolve issues
  • Sees the organisation as a series of integrated and interlocking business processes. Understands the financial framework and performance of the organisation.  Establishes and monitors and reacts to appropriate financial measures
  • Applies logic, data and pragmatism to solve problems dispassionately and effectively 



What we can offer you

  • Salary up to £80,000 per annum depending upon skills and experience

  • 25 days holiday plus bank holidays

  • Aviva Health Insurance

  • Group Life Assurance

  • Income Protection

  • Subsidised Canteen (Derby site only)

  • Enhanced Group Pension Scheme, matching up to 6%

  • Flexible Working (role dependant)

  • Enhanced Paternity and Maternity Pay


At TopHat we welcome applications from all backgrounds and are committed to creating a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture where everyone can succeed and be themselves. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it makes our business what it is today. We value diversity and we particularly welcome applications from BAME communities, women and anyone with disabilities as we are underrepresented in these areas.

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