Investing in visionary founders, transformational technology and emergent ecosystems for a new world.

Innovation Endeavors
Innovation Endeavors

Staff Manufacturing Engineer



Other Engineering
San Francisco, CA, USA
Posted on Thursday, July 27, 2023

Welcome to Planet. We believe in using space to help life on Earth.

Planet designs, builds, and operates the largest constellation of imaging satellites in history. This constellation delivers an unprecedented dataset of empirical information via a revolutionary cloud-based platform to authoritative figures in commercial, environmental, and humanitarian sectors. We are both a space company and data company all rolled into one.

Customers and users across the globe use Planet's data to develop new technologies, drive revenue, power research, and solve our world’s toughest obstacles.

As we control every component of hardware design, manufacturing, data processing, and software engineering, our office is a truly inspiring mix of experts from a variety of domains.

We have a people-centric approach toward culture and community and we strive to iterate in a way that puts our team members first and prepares our company for growth. Join Planet and be a part of our mission to change the way people see the world.

Planet is a global company with employees working remotely world wide and joining us from offices in San Francisco, Washington DC, Germany, and The Netherlands.

About the Role:

As a Staff Manufacturing Engineer at Planet, you will be responsible for developing, leading and executing our assembly, integration and test processes for our next generation of satellites. You will also lead DFM/DFA (design for manufacturing / design for assembly) efforts within Planet. You will apply your manufacturing engineering skills to establish and refine the overall process, while implementing the procedures and work instructions for assembling and testing subassemblies, modules and complete spacecraft. You will be responsible for designing and refining all support equipment and fixturing necessary to assemble and manipulate our spacecraft within tight constraints. You will be leading a team of manufacturing process engineers and technicians, while partnering with manufacturing personnel to bring to life your vision. You will also be working quite closely with design engineers, test engineers, engineering program management, and supply chain teams to execute and deliver spacecraft.

Impact You’ll Own:

  • Develop assembly, integration and test processes for PCBAs, subassemblies and full spacecraft
  • Develop mechanical and electrical equipment and fixtures to aid with assembly, integration and testing
  • Develop and refine assembly procedures and work instructions
  • Lead a cross-functional team of process and design engineers to continuously improve Spacecraft Design for Manufacturability and Test
  • Transform the manufacturing line from R&D to production by developing processes to go from prototype/NPI to volume assembly of flight builds
  • Provide expert feedback and input to inform prioritized critical developments of Planet’s in-house MES
  • Be the living embodiment of continuous improvement

What You Bring:

  • Proven history of managing complex, interdisciplinary manufacturing processes
  • Experience managing engineers and technicians
  • 10+ years of manufacturing development experience
  • Expert level SolidWorks skills to provide DFM/DFA recommendations, develop tooling and fixturing to interface with spacecraft, and to extract useful views for use in work instructions
  • Experience managing complex projects in the aerospace, or automotive industries with task planning, tracking and execution.
  • Hands-on experience with hardware assembly, integration, and test

What Makes You Stand Out:

  • Ability to influence stakeholders
  • Ability to learn new engineering concepts quickly
  • Demonstrated ability to implement continuous improvement processes
  • Desire to lead others and coach them to their fullest potential

Benefits While Working at Planet:

  • Comprehensive Health Plan
  • Wellness program and onsite massages in specific offices
  • Flexible Time Off
  • Recognition Programs
  • Commuter Benefits
  • Learning and Tuition Reimbursement
  • Parental Leave
  • Offsites and Happy Hours
  • Volunteering Benefits


The US base salary range for this full-time position at the commencement of employment is $178,900 - $223,600. Additionally, this role might be eligible for discretionary short-term and long-term incentives (bonus and equity). The final salary range is determined by job related experience, skills and location. The range displays our typical hiring range for new hire salaries in US locations only. Your recruiter can share more about the specific salary range for your preferred location during the hiring process.

This position requires access to export controlled technology, and as such, employment will be contingent upon the candidate’s ability to access EAR and/or ITAR controlled technology pursuant to an export license approved by the Bureau of Industry and Security and/or the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, if required.

Why we care so much about Belonging.

We’re dedicated to helping the whole Planet, and to do that we must strive to represent all of it within each of our offices and on all of our teams. That’s why Planet is guided by an ultimate north star of Belonging, dreaming big as we approach our ongoing work with diversity, equity and inclusion. If this job intrigues you, but you’re thinking you might not have all the qualifications, please... do apply! At Planet, we are looking for well-rounded people from around the world who can contribute to more ways than just what is listed in this job description. We don’t just fill positions, we aspire to fulfill people’s careers, most excited about folks who are motivated by our underlying humanitarian efforts. We are a few orbits around the sun before we get to where we want to be, so we hope you’re excited to come along for the ride.

EEO statement:

Planet is committed to building a community where everyone belongs and we invite people from all backgrounds to apply. Planet is an equal opportunity employer, and committed to providing employment opportunities regardless of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding, age, sexual orientation, military or veteran status, or any other protected classification, in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws. Know Your Rights.


Planet is an inclusive community and we know that everyone has their own needs. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation during the hiring process, please call Planet's front office at 669-214-9404 or contact your recruiter with your request. Your message will be confidential and we will be happy to assist you.

Privacy Policy: By clicking "Apply Now" at the top of this job posting, I acknowledge that I have read the Planet Data Privacy Notice for California Staff Members and Applicants, and hereby consent to the collection, processing, use, and storage of my personal information as described therein.

Privacy Policy (European Applicants): By clicking "Apply Now" at the top of this job posting, I acknowledge that I have read the Candidate Privacy Notice GDPR Planet Labs Europe, and hereby consent to the collection, processing, use, and storage of my personal information as described therein.