Advanced Development Mechanical Engineer

Whisker, formerly known as AutoPets, is the maker of Litter-Robot, Feeder-Robot, and At Whisker, we believe pet parenthood can always get better.

As leading innovators in pet tech and refined pet accessories, we work tirelessly to solve problems and deliver smarter insights for pet parents while enriching the lives of pets. Whether it’s a self-cleaning litter box that automates scooping, an automatic feeder that helps pets develop healthier eating habits, or a modern cat tree that delights both humans and felines, we strive to deliver better solutions for consumers while transforming pet care along the way. To us, having a pet is the best thing ever. At Whisker, life together just keeps getting better.

Whisker is based in Auburn Hills, Michigan and Juneau, Wisconsin with 450+ passionate team members.

What You’ll Do:

The Advanced Development Mechanical Engineer will utilize experience and intuition to design and develop highly functional connected pet care products with a heavy focus on the proverbial napkin sketch.  This position diligently works with a core team of cross functional engineers and designers to architect and prove out system theory of operation and the Advanced Development engineers are expected to embrace new concepts and tools in order to carry an early design concept through to production. The size and speed of this team requires every member to be able to design, build and test their own concepts rapidly. 

  • Contributes to the advanced development of connected pet care products quickly and efficiently with little direction
  • Researches and learns new engineering and design skills as the project requires
  • Designs initial concepts of consumer products, systems and subsystems using CAD/Solid Modeling tools
  • Hand builds proof of operation prototypes utilizing any number or method of in-house lab resources including 3D printing, CNC, Laser cutting, vacuuming forming and any other means of rapid development you bring to the table
  • Designs features with a mechanical focus but incorporates elements of other engineering disciplines such as power electronics, sensors, software and firmware development into designs and prototypes
  • Uses judgment and proposes different solutions to address more complicated processes with technical variety and/or interdependent production cycles
  • Leverages prior mechanical design experience and one's own technical discipline to meet product deliverables within schedule and budget constraints
  • Demonstrates systems-thinking mentality to understand how other engineering disciplines integrate together to achieve product requirements
  • Conducts benchmarking research and creates design proposals for projects
  • Will perform additional responsibilities when required 

What You’ll Bring:

  • BS in Mechanical Engineering, Mechatronics or other relevant field
  • Experience in consumer product design, with an emphasis on plastics
  • Experience with manufacturing, electronics packaging, and motor-driven mechanisms
  • Strong CAD experience with PTC Creo or similar systems 
  • Ability to use general productivity software Sheets/Excel to evaluate and enhance design decisions.
  • Comfortable with office pets (dogs, cats) 
  • Maintains confidentiality of proprietary information
  • Ability to maintain a professional atmosphere in a fast-paced environment with numerous interactions and interruptions
  • A high degree of initiative, self-motivation, and ability to motivate others
  • Ability to establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with Team Members and colleagues

Not Required but Nice to Have!

  • VEX, BEST, PLTW, OCCRA, Combat Robotics, Robofest, FIRST or other design/build challenge experience, Including home projects.
  • Not required to have pets, but highly recommended!
  • Knowledge of Injection molded plastics, sheet metal and other similar manufacturing processes
  • Working knowledge of GD&T and component sourcing
  • A solid model / design skill set test may be asked to complete as part of the interview process
  • Comfortable with surface modeling techniques

Physical Demands and Work Environment

The physical demands described here represent those that a Team Member must meet to perform the essential functions of this job successfully. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the Team Member is regularly required to sit and talk or hear. The Team Member is frequently required to use their hands to handle or feel. The Team Member is occasionally required to stand, walk, and reach with hands and arms. The Team Member must lift and/or move up to 35 pounds and occasionally up to 75 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus.

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that a Team Member encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

Benefits & Purrks:

Join a tenacious, inventive company that empowers team members to chart their own path, lead by grounding decisions in the “why”, and has a strong sense of empathy and openness to new perspectives. Be a part of exciting growth, work with incredible people, and create tomorrow’s pet products—plus a whole lot of extras. You will also be provided with:

  • Premium Medical/Dental/Vision insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • PTO
  • 14 Paid Holidays
  • Paid Parental Leave
  • 401K with 4% Match
  • Flexible Work Arrangements
  • Top of the line equipment

Statement of Inclusivity:

We believe different perspectives make Whisker better and strive to create a place where everyone has equal opportunities to thrive.