Controls & Robotics Engineer

Date: Nov 21, 2023

Location: Johnson City, TN, US, 37604

Company: A. O. Smith Corporation

Company / Location Information

Founded in 1874, A. O. Smith is a $3.8 billion publicly-traded global water technology leader (NYSE: AOS) with over 12,000 employees globally.  We are one of the world’s leading manufacturers and best-known brands of residential and commercial water heaters and boilers, as well as a global leader in the manufacturing of water treatment systems for household and light commercial applications.  Our Johnson City location in Eastern Tennessee is home to approximately 1000 employees on our Manufacturing and Engineering teams for Residential Water Heaters, a product category in which we have #1 market share - nearly 40% of homes with a water heater have an A. O. Smith brand.

Primary Function

A. O. Smith makes substantial capital equipment investments in our facilities and our Johnson City facility is a high-performance plant with steady production volumes and has planned projects well into the future.  We are looking for a Controls & Robotics & Engineer to join our Manufacturing Engineering team.  This role will:

  • Lead controls installation and upgrades projects both independently and as part of a team
  • Be a critical part of the team responsible for automation and robotics installations and upgrades
  • Look for Continuous Improvement possibilities (ex: altering and improving controls programs)


  • Provide technical guidance to support production throughput, efficiency, first pass yield, safety improvements and cost reductions
  • Lead other controls engineers and future technicians
  • Provide technical support for new equipment purchases
  • Support Manufacturing Engineering by involvement in the specifications, quoting and design review process, reviewing all controls documentation and establishing strong relationships with suppliers’ controls teams
  • Project Management: requires managing projects throughout the entire process, from concept through specifications, design, quoting, capital write-up/submittal, approval, purchase agreement, expenditure tracking, installation, capitalization and closure, including status presentations
  • Develop control systems, procedure and audit systems
  • Update standardized control specifications for different levels of machine controls
  • Support program modifications and centralized storage of updated software and programs
  • Troubleshoot software and programming issues
  • Work closely with operations and maintenance to define capital needs to replace, rebuild, or automate equipment/processes

Role Specific Responsibilities


  • Responsible for the training and development of maintenance/manufacturing technicians and operators
  • Develop upgrade plans for outdated equipment controls and improve existing controls for improved reliability and operation
  • Support manufacturing team for existing equipment/processes including but not limited to: controls, robotics, forming, assembly, welding, and glassing
  • Foster an environment conducive to high employee engagement
  • Multi-task in a fast-paced manufacturing plant environment
  • Along with production and maintenance, assure process parameters, operational methods and preventive maintenance are optimized
  • Ensure documented work procedures are established, understood and followed
  • Support strategic plant and company initiatives and special projects
  • Champion and model the A.O. Smith Guiding Principles, Code of Business Ethics and Values


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering: Mechanical, Electronics/Controls, Electrical, Welding, or Industrial.
  • 7+ years of experience working as a Controls and or Robotics Engineer
  • Prior mechanical and electrical skills - Mechatronics
  • Requires strong PLC/PAC Programming background and Automation experience with Allen-Bradley controls, RS Logix 5000 and Studio 5000 software, with RS View Studio panelview software
  • Siemens PLC programming experience/troubleshooting a plus
  • Robotics experience: Fanuc, ABB Robots; welding robots, pick and place, etc.
  • Manufacturing expertise to include project management and engineering; maintenance and quality in a lean environment
  • Ideal candidate will have experience with various applications interfacing robots with existing systems and controls
  • Firm knowledge of OSHA and TOSHA rules and regulations
  • Prior experience with lean desired
  • Strong organizational and communication skills
  • Proficiency in MS Office and AutoCAD/SolidWorks; MS Project/Smartsheet experience required

We Offer

Competitive compensation package and comprehensive benefits plans which include medical and dental insurance, company-sponsored life insurance, retirement security savings plan, short- and long-term disability programs and tuition assistance.

Nearest Major Market: Asheville
Nearest Secondary Market: Knoxville

Job Segment: Facilities, Controls Engineer, Manufacturing Engineer, Project Manager, Electronics Engineer, Operations, Engineering, Technology