What drives you is that when those one or two big annual projects leave R&D bound for production, you have done everything you can to make sure the factory will be able to make it consistently and to the required standard.
You’ve worked closely with R&D through redesigns that have reduced the numbers of parts or facilitated assembly. To do that, you need to be credible in the minds of the R&D Engineers. If that is not apparent immediately, it is something you must achieve very quickly.
You’ve made sure the materials selected are best-fit and stayed close to the proposed manufacturing process throughout its development. Your experience tells you that the equipment, in conjunction with the jigs & fixtures, BOMs and SOPs will produce a quality product with very little fuss.
You probably have a Mechatronics or a Mechanical Engineering qualification. Alternatively, you may have an electronics manufacturing background, but you may have years of experience dealing with the mechanical elements of making an electronic product – reviewing enclosure designs or proposing designs for jigs, for example.
Once the product is in production there may be times when a component is delivered that is not up to spec – but it is needed NOW! You are the person who has the experience to be able to arrange a work around, so that the product goes out on schedule and in specification.
This is a senior, strategic role. You will be advocating for manufacturing and it is critical that people come to trust your judgement about the manufacturability of a proposed product and the most appropriate and effective way to make it.