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POET Operations Engineer in Sioux Falls, South Dakota


Our 28 Biorefining facilities produce over 1.9 billion gallons of ethanol, 5 million tons of Dakota Gold distillers grain animal feed and 600 million pounds of our Voila® corn oil. That’s a lot of product! In addition, we provide CO2 to the beverage industry and contribute to sustainable roadways. We also buy 650 million bushels of corn per year from local producers. It is our role at POET Plant Management to ensure safe, efficient, and profitable operations at each facility.


The Operations Engineer analyzes real time bioprocessing facility data to identify opportunities to improve performance throughout the POET fleet. In this role, you will design and drive continuous improvement projects, be exposed to all facets of bioprocessing facility operations and becomes a subject matter expert in many areas of operation. You will also collaborate with the POET team to troubleshoot, innovate, optimize, and identify areas of improvement. The Operations Engineer also provides leadership and mentoring to our Process Engineer team within POET Plant Management. Together, we focus on problem solving, teamwork and leadership which results in ongoing improvements throughout the fleet of POET facilities. We work hard, we play hard and we drive results!


  • Provide leadership on cross functional teams.

  • Oversee POET bioprocessing facility operations and determine areas of needed improvement.

  • Identify, develop, and manage implementation of new technologies at the Biorefineries.

  • Mentor and assist in training and technical development of junior engineers.

  • Manage multiple projects and priorities with minimal direction.

  • Troubleshoot problems to ensure plant uptime and efficiency.

  • Maximize plant efficiency though teamwork and innovation.

  • Develop and implement procedures for new processes and technologies.

  • Complete data analysis of process information and effectively communicate the results to plant management.

  • Manage and coordinate bioprocessing facility start-ups and expansions including scheduling, new team member training and coordination with Poet Design and Construction.

  • Interact with equipment manufacturers to act as an advocate for the POET bioprocessing facilities on specific projects.

  • Travel to bioprocessing facilities for meetings, site visits/audits, operational support, and training.

  • Develop and provide technical presentations to management.

  • Foster a culture of safe behavior and environmental compliance at all times.

  • Maintain a team environment at all times and champion POET in the community.

  • Since we’re all about teamwork and getting the job done, your skill may be put to a lot of other uses!


  • You have a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering (required). Chemical, Process, Agricultural and Biosystems, Mechanical Engineering, or other related majors preferred.

  • Experience requirements:

  • Process Engineer I: experience through internships, co-ops and educational opportunities.

  • Process Engineer II: 4 or more years of overall experience with 3 or more years of experience in a related industry.

  • Operations Engineer: 8 or more years of overall experience with 6 or more years of experience in a related industry.

  • The selected candidate’s qualifications and experience will determine the appropriate title.

  • Additional training in Microbiology is preferred.

  • You have excellent organizational, time management, and communication skills as well as the ability to embrace change.

  • You communicate effectively in writing and in person.

  • You have the ability to understand technical and day to day operation of a bioprocessing facility in great detail and can provide leadership to various teams when needed.

  • You know the basics of Microsoft Office Suite. You’re capable of learning new programs.

To review a complete job description

POET is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE). Qualified applicants are considered for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or veteran status.

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Job ID2020-3950

Employment TypeRegular Full-Time



Travel Required25%-50%

Position Location(s)US-SD-Sioux Falls

FLSA StatusExempt