Senior R&D Lead Chemist
Avon Lake, OH 
Posted 1 month ago
Job Description

Avient Corporation (formerly PolyOne Corporation), with 2021 revenues of $4.8 billion, provides specialized and sustainable material solutions that transform customer challenges into opportunities, bringing new products to life for a better world. Examples include:

  • Barrier technologies that preserve the shelf-life and quality of food, beverages, medicine and other perishable goods through high-performance materials that require less plastic
  • Light-weighting solutions that replace heavier traditional materials like metal, glass and wood, which can improve fuel efficiency in all modes of transportation
  • Breakthrough technologies that minimize wastewater and improve the recyclability of materials and packaging across a spectrum of end uses

Avient employs approximately 9,100 associates and is certified ACC Responsible Care and a founding member of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste. For more information, visit


At Avient, we strive for a culture of trust and engagement. Our associates are leading company initiatives such as Lead by Women, HYPE and Pride to advance diversity in professional and personal development. We also provide our associates with robust development programs such as Avient Academy, Lean Six Sigma, and various leadership workshops to allow for career growth in a variety of ways. With workplace flexibility, health and wellness programs, casual dress days, and paid time off for community service, we are committed to building upon our positive momentum.

At Avient, we believe diversity of ideas and backgrounds gives us the creativity to be successful in a rapidly changing world. In support of this, we stress equality of opportunity for all qualified individuals in accordance with applicable laws. Decisions on hiring, promotion, development, compensation or advancement are based solely on a person's qualifications, abilities, experience and performance.

Job Summary

The Sr. R&D Lead Chemist position supports our SEM (Specialty Engineered Materials) team with a focus in North American opportunities. This person will be responsible for working with SEM's scientists, engineers and technicians to design, develop and improve custom polymer formulations with a focus on color science and aesthetics. This is accomplished by working closely with the sales, marketing, as well as technology leadership to identify and prioritize development opportunities that will further drive the growth of specialty formulations. This person will report to the Sr. Technology Manager for Functional Aesthetics and Color. The Sr. R&D Lead Chemist develops innovative solutions that position Avient as the leading specialty solutions provider for customers. This position will be based out of our Avon Lake, Ohio Innovation Center.

Essential Functions

  • Partner internally and externally to innovate new technology and penetrate strategic markets to solve customer problems.
  • Focus on innovation portfolios and new technologies to address immediate opportunities and business unit platforms. This includes formulating to meet customer's requirements with respect to mechanical properties, electrical properties, flame resistance, flow, surface appearance, shrinkage, weathering performance all in harmony with the colorability.
  • Drive innovative ideas and collaboration across the Innovation Center team. Focus on rapid customer responses, as well as longer range projects, which may require input from manufacturing and engineering.
  • Scope of work:
  • Plan, direct and coordinate product development projects independently.
  • Modify existing formulation without compromising existing properties.
  • Focus on expansion of efforts on colorant database which will best suit existing SEM platforms and future initiatives in composites, sustainability, etc.
  • Enhance color knowledge on projects which allow for further differentiate SEM products and value around durability, aesthetics and performance. This includes color tools and characterization techniques.
  • Formulate compounds to meet customer's requirements by leveraging knowledge across SEM, Color and Additives Division and strategic vendors.
  • Coordinate with other Avient sites for technology transfers where necessary.
  • Maintain and protect all formulations developed, as well as all formulations transferred from other Avient sites.
  • Coordinate with Process/Product Translation and Production departments for production scale up.
  • Assist the Process and Production Department's in troubleshooting and identifying process improvement opportunities.
  • Understand and select appropriate raw materials including base resin, colorants, fillers, flame retardants, stabilizers, lubricants, etc. to achieve the required compound properties and applications.
  • Plan raw material cost saving programs through collaboration with sourcing, product management, production and commercial where appropriate.
  • Provide technical leadership through mentoring, training, and coaching to develop our technical depth and create a pipeline of knowledge for shorter and longer term growth.
  • Where appropriate interact globally to facilitate product translation with technical teams in Europe and Asia. Focus on global relationships to drive innovation and capitalize on things learned.
  • Advocate a strong safety and performance culture and attitude within the team.

Education and Experience

  • Bachelor's or Master's degree in a related field is required
  • 5+ years of related experience is strongly preferred (materials science, polymer science, polymer engineering or related industrial experience, etc.)

Additional Qualifications

  • Ability to analyze complex data sets and make conclusions and recommendations.
  • Self-motivation, with the ability to drive objectives throughout the team.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal. Must be able to communicate results and needs to many levels of the organization.
  • Effectively coach personnel in other disciplines and business unites to achieve results.
  • Demonstrated ability to influence effectively at the peer level, as well as the next level in the organization globally.
  • Excellent project management skills.


  • Each position at Avient focuses on eight Core Competencies as a Leader of Self. Additionally, management positions focus on Leadership Competencies as a Leader of Others and/or a Leader of the Business. These competencies are designed to drive behavior that will ultimately help our associates excel at their current roles, while supporting individual and career development.

Physical Demands

* While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to stand; use both hands to finger, handle or feel; and reach with hands and arms. The employee is frequently required to walk. The employee is occasionally required to stoop, kneel, crouch, crawl, and talk and hear. The employee is occasionally required to lift and/or move up to 50 lbs. Specific vision abilities may be required for this job include close vision, color vision, depth perception, and ability to adjust focus. While performing duties of this job, the employee is occasionally exposed to moving mechanical parts, toxic or caustic chemicals, fumes or airborne particles. The noise levels in the work environment range from normal office noise levels to loud.

Avient Corporation is a drug free workplace. Avient is an equal opportunity employer. We maintain a policy of non-discrimination in providing equal employment to all qualified employees and candidates regardless of race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, color, religion, national origin, disability, genetic information, protected veteran's status, or other legally protected classification in accordance with applicable federal, state and local law. #LI-AD1

PolyOne is an equal employment opportunity/affirmative action employer and provides equal employment opportunity to all qualified applicants regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, genetic information, or veteran status, or other legally protected classification in the state in which a person is seeking employment. PolyOne will use E-Verify to ensure employment eligibility of newly hired employees where required.


Job Summary
Start Date
As soon as possible
Employment Term and Type
Regular, Full Time
Required Education
Bachelor's Degree
Required Experience
5+ years
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