Chief Engineer

Chief Engineer

Role Overview

SkyDrive are looking for a passionate and talented leader to fill the role of Chief Engineer for the Air Mobility Division. The role is highly multi-disciplinary and applicants must have a passion for new technology whilst working in a lean manner to achieve program objectives and help SkyDrive deliver a range of certified eVTOLs into the Advanced Air Mobility eco-system.

The role requires leadership across all aspects of engineering for manned Air Mobility products, and the successful candidate will be a key driver in harmonisation across all technical areas of eVTOL development for the SD05 program. Integration is a critical aspect of the role and will require defining best practice across many disciplines, providing engineering guidance and decision making, and ensuring successful and timely certification approval.

The successful candidate will be a critical leader within SkyDrive, in leading the engineering team, and requires excellent interpersonal skills (in a multilingual environment), strong work ethic, efficient self-management, passion to learn new skills and helping develop others.


  • Primary responsibility will be leading all engineering aspects of the SD05 program for successful entry into service. Work closely with all team leaders within the air mobility vehicle group (design & prototyping, flight control, energy storage & supply, electrical propulsion, avionics, human factors, structures, aircraft integration etc) and provide technical authority in decision making.
  • Coordinate across all activities that impact engineering safety and/or performance of SkyDrive manned vehicles – overall vehicle requirements management, supplier management, systems integration, lab/ground/flight testing etc.
  • Represent the engineering department and act as focal during high-level interactions with other critical areas of the business (certification, safety, flight test, production, operations, supply chain, project management, business development etc).
  • Ensure all engineering aspects are realistically represented in SkyDrive program schedules and take responsibility for meeting engineering targets (in terms of deliverables, milestones, budgets and resource allocation).
  • Decision making role in developing aircraft and system architectures, and concept trade study decisions for SkyDrive manned vehicles. Tasks will include all engineering aspects of design and development for the aircraft (across the entire lifecycle).
  • eVTOL is a new vehicle type with immature regulations, therefore a critical part of the role will be working with regulators and technical experts to ensure SkyDrive is well positioned to meet certification targets.
  • A core expectation is to lead the development of a design, and processes that meet or exceed the Safety requirements, and significantly contributing to the general safety philosophy at SkyDrive.
  • Manage all air mobility vehicle group team leads in meeting performance targets, ensure clear objectives and milestones are defined, and provide engineering support when considering system impacts at aircraft level.
  • Deep-dive into technical aspects, when required, to provide astute assessment of aircraft and/or system behaviour to help engineering team understanding.
  • Build SkyDrive capability in engineering areas outside the candidates core competencies by leveraging effective communication with team leads and subject matter experts (SMEs).
  • Drive internal SkyDrive standards and best practice for quality of engineering tasks. Combine knowledge from conventional aerospace and new approaches for eVTOL, and emphasise the needs of a lean start-up culture with novel designs and unique operational characteristics.
  • SkyDrive expect rapid expansion and recruitment across all engineering teams, and the candidate will be responsible for providing adequate recruitment requirements to ensure the needs of the program are met. At the same time, develop and nurture talent internally.
  • Outside the main development programs, the candidate is expected to provide input and guidance to SkyDrive long-term strategies where needed (e.g. R&D, supplier/partnership selection, manufacturing/QA strategies, training etc).


  • Understanding of aircraft dynamics (aerodynamics, structural and controllability) for fixed wing and/or rotorcraft (preferably the latter) and experience in testing at prototype, development and certification stages. 
  • Excellent engineering skills in one or more of the key SkyDrive eVTOL systems (identified above). Detailed expertise not required across all, but astute enough to ensure the correct technical and conceptual decisions are made.
  • Led preliminary design and development of an aircraft to entry into service. Experience leading design/production reviews (e.g. PDR, CDR, PRR or equivalent) and integrating to ensure holistic progression through milestones at aircraft level.
  • Experienced in creating and approving certification plans for aircraft systems and worked with common methods of compliance techniques to achieve certification for multiple aircraft systems. Deep knowledge in one-of Part/CS 23/25/27/29 (preferably Part 23 and 27).
  • Practical implementation of all aspects of ARP4754, safety assessment/analysis techniques (e.g. ARP4761), and lower-level hardware and software standards (e.g. DO-178, DO-254 etc).
  • Experience leading decisions on different requirement types (e.g. regulations, functional, operations, safety, human factors, maintenance, installation, manufacturing). Proven ability to delegate and leverage experts when required.
  • Excellent project and man-management skills across teams of different skill levels and languages. Including but not limited to – strong communication, motivation, technical negotiation, progress tracking, risk management, task prioritisation and delegation, scheduling, human resource and financial budgeting.
  • BSc or MSc in Engineering (aerospace, electrical, mechanical or equivalent).
  • Minimum of 20 years in technical role within aerospace or related fields. At least 5 years working in a leadership role at aircraft level.
  • Software: general office skills (MS Office, Gdocs), configuration tools (e.g. TeamCenter or equivalent), requirements management tools (e.g. DOORS or equivalent).
  • Business level English and demonstrated ability to build positive relationships in a multilingual environment.


  • Experience working in eVTOL and/or drone development and demonstrated experience in technical leadership of novel aircraft programs.
  • Led a “cutting-edge” project with market leading performance. Developed novel solutions with new technologies in complex environments.
  • Been responsible for clean sheet design of an aircraft and progressed from concept to detailed design and manufacture stage.
  • Experience with aircraft dynamics simulation for multicopters and/or complex aerodynamic modeling (aircraft and/or propeller level).
  • Some experience in contributing to aerospace regulations and/or standards/guides (e.g. ASTM/RTCA/SAE/Advisory Circulars) to aid development of aircraft and systems.
  • Experienced in initiating Model Based System Engineering (MBSE) to improve efficiencies and reduce lead-times across the aircraft life-cycle.
  • Business level Japanese.


  • Development Base Toyota(Asuke-Chiku, Toyota City, Aichi)or Tokyo

*If you live outside Aichi Prefecture, you must be able to travel to the development site.

Benefits and Others

  • Discretionary labor system
  • Saturdays, Sundays, and New Year Holidays
  • Health insurance, employee pesion (according to Japan standards), employement insurance, worker’s accident compensation insurance