Sr. Art Director - Proprietary Brands Packaging
The Sr. Art Director is a strategic leader and doer who is driven to deliver meaningful design solutions for PetSmart’s Proprietary Brands. This position is responsible for leading the Proprietary Brand Package Design team as well as delivering top notch packaging concepts across three business divisions.
This work requires a creative, conceptual, and strategic thinker who is experienced and confident in leading a team of designers, copywriters and production designers that tackle a brief from beginning to end. The ideal candidate will deliver a high level of creative standards, has a strong level of initiative, the ability to influence and manage multiple large-scale projects and deadlines simultaneously in a fast-paced retail environment.
Candidate must be able to demonstrate leadership in developing brand stories, understand how to design to an established brand architecture and guide your team to deliver excellent work. Ability to clearly articulate creative concepts to various cross-functional partners and provide a persuasive POV for what is right for the brand.
Must be flexible and optimistic, possess a high level of organizational skills and the ability to work with the broader Creative team to continuously improve the Proprietary Brand packaging process, lead budget management and the management of creative content.
In addition, this candidate has a high level of accountability, will create and build strong cross-functional partnerships across the organization to learn and understand interdependencies within the organization.
Responsibilities include managing Art Directors, Designers, Production Designers and Copywriters. Maintains creative oversight of the entire creative process from beginning to end, ensuring on-strategy creative concepting through to consistent rollout of production mechanicals for all SKUs; maintaining brand consistency across all materials. This role also has responsibility for playing a lead role of driving the development of timelines with design team members and cross-functional partners and resolving problems.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Directs a high performing, customer centric team. Develops associates through coaching, mentoring, performance management, talent management and succession planning.
- Lead, art direct and inspire a team of Designers, Art Directors, Copywriters and Production Designers to develop strong, compelling and on-strategy design solutions for PetSmart’s Proprietary Brands from concept ideation through to delivery of finalized artwork mechanicals.
- Develop strong design concepts that build a brand story around the creative brief and bring to life an established brand architecture, applying the appropriate level of unification and/or differentiation across the brands as appropriate.
- Creates an environment for the team that encourages open discussion and agile-collaborative teamwork. Fosters an engaging work environment, problem solves to remove roadblocks for the team and lead initiatives with effectiveness.
- Provides design direction and guidance to team. Inspires, motivates and coaches team to reach their fullest potential.
- Create engaging and thoughtful presentations. Has the ability to clearly articulate creative ideas and influence cross-functional teams toward fresh, and new or exciting ideas.
- Works productively and harmoniously as a dedicated team player with Product Design team, Traffic Managers, Photographers, Copywriters.
- Continually monitors team workload and timelines to ensure projects are on-track resources are strategically allocated for positive workflow and proactively communicates recommendations to reallocate to optimize creative output as needed.
- Works closely with traffic team to develop efficient plans for moving projects through the team all while ensuring quality standards are met.
- Must be organized and able to manage the packaging budget.
- Communicates strategic packaging direction and packaging process to direct team and cross-functionally to Brand Managers, Creative Studio, Merchandising, Suppliers, Product Design and Marketing teams. Works with team to improve operational efficiencies as needed. Goal is to remain agile.
- Oversees and maintains brand consistency across all creative packages, forms and materials.
- Maintains and provides status updates to key stakeholders on a regular basis.
- Along with Senior Director and Brand team – this role will help build relationships with and manages external agencies and strategic partners as needed to facilitate and complete projects in compliance to timelines and business objectives.
- Ensures that all proprietary Brand packaging conforms to U.S. and Canadian packaging regulations, as well as internal brand standards and guidelines.
- Maintains a high level of package design related knowledge, including current trends, methods and processes.
- Continues professional development by stretching understanding of design, execution processes, industry best practices and related information.
- Ability to think on your feet, share creative ideas in meetings and thrive in a collaborative, corporate environment with a professional and positive attitude.
- Possess a high degree of ownership and initiative with the ability to focus on details as well as the big picture.
- Thorough understanding of the following:
- Print production and printing processes on a wide variety of packaging substrates.
- Prepress management and managing the packaging process as it pertains to proprietary brands in a retail environment.
- Must be fanatical about color-management and work closely with and support Senior Production Designer to drive color management expectations out to the vendor community.
EDUCATION and/or EXPERIENCE
- Minimum Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design or related field.
- 10+ years direct experience with CPG or retail package design.
- 5+ Years management/cross-functional leadership experience including excellent communication, motivational and problem-solving skills.