Design Manager

Sydney (Region), New South Wales (AU)
15 Aug 2022
15 Sep 2022
Design Manager
Contract Type
Full Time

Over the last 14 years Aje has carefully built a culture where our people are supported, inspired and encouraged to be the best they can. 


Along with our incredible team, our brand has an intrinsic sense of duality, balancing toughness with femininity, untamed volume with structure and signature statement pieces alongside effortless essentials. These complementing differences are what has allowed Aje to move with the motions of the retail landscape to become one of Australia’s most influential fashion houses. 


An exciting opportunity has arisen for a Design Manager to join Aje. Based at the new Sydney Head Office with dual reporting to the General Manager of Design and Head of Design Operation and Production you will be responsible for representing the Design team to the wider business by acting as the gatekeeper and conduit of information. The Design Room Manager is responsible for overseeing the coordination of in-house design and product team members, freelance team members, the sample room in Bali, factory prototypes from China, fittings, production handover and management of team workflow in order to maintain the Critical Path, and achieve KPIs. They are responsible for all product categories in Aje, including Ready-to-wear, non-apparel, collaborations and capsules, and will drive new initiatives including overseeing the implementation of new product categories by reviewing the team structure, planning resources and sourcing new suppliers where needed.



As a Design Manager, your tasks will include: 


  • Creation, execution and monitoring of the design department calendar which covers the  schedule and timelines of design, sourcing, specification sheets, fittings, sample making, production handover and marketing requirements- in accordance with the company Critical Path. 
  • Dynamic and constant management and priority setting of the Design team’s workload for all  competing collections, Design team’s workflow in order to ensure all goals are met in regards to  the critical path.
  • Oversee, critique and mentor the design team to maximise employee performance,  productivity, innovation, creativity and commerciality. 
  • Responsible for delivering collections in accordance with costing benchmarks, critical path and  to Aje quality standards, ensuring there is a harmonious balance between creative direction, range plan and pricing hierarchy requirements. 
  • Sign off and complete handover to Tech Team and Production  department in adherence to critical path. 
  • Proactive analysis of costings throughout development and  implementation of new processes, sourcing, supplier negotiation to support continued growth in  margin across all categories. 
  • Develop and expand knowledge of suppliers by continually researching, introducing new  suppliers where needed and attending international trade shows where possible.  
  • Specifically focus on sustainable design practices by introducing new suppliers and processes  which are sustainably and environmentally minded, in line with Aje Aware commandments and  the business Code of Conduct. 
  • Competitor awareness projects seasonally, with up-to-date knowledge and awareness of  pricing structures and trend movements in the market. 



You will bring: 


  • Minimum 5+ years’ experience as a Design Manager,  and extended knowledge of all Design & Production functions. 
  • Experience in luxury/Australian Designer will be highly regarded
  • Experience leading a team through consistent communication of expectations, deadlines, training, coaching conversations and annual and quarterly appraisals
  • Knowledge and understanding of garment construction and pattern making 
  • Existing network of suppliers and sourcing methods (both domestic and off-shore). With the proven experience to develop new suppliers in line with Aje production guidelines
  • Strong technical knowledge coupled with an understanding of industry approved quality control standards and procedures 
  • Proven stakeholder engagement across internal and external teams
  • Strong understanding of aesthetic and quality standards of designer level products, as well  as personal awareness and understanding of trends and taste adaptable to the Aje creative handwriting
  • Impeccable follow-up and precise attention to detail 
  • Ability to manage competing priorities and timelines to ensure priorities are met based on the critical path 
  • Ability to design and implement new systems and process improvements as schedule
  • Interest in sustainable design practises and motivation to grow the sustainable aspect of the  business in accordance with Aje Aware principles and our Code of Conduct. 



We recognise the impact our team has on our success. To show our appreciation we want you to enjoy...


  • Enticing salary packaging
  • Your growth is our growth, training and development programs are recommended and encouraged! 
  • Take advantage of the Sydney Sun with our Early Friday Hours 
  • Celebrate milestones such as, Birthdays with Aje leave benefits
  • Be a part of the change with increasing positive corporate responsibility, reflected through our Aje Aware Charter 
  • Be adored and recognised as no key achievement and success goes unnoticed!
  • We appreciate our hard working teams however, a healthy work life balance is one in which we actively promote 
  • Embrace the Aje style with our generous employee discounts, pre-order programs, clothing allowances and regular sample sales



At Aje, diversity is a founding principle of the brand, taking inspiration from multicultural Australia throughout all visual communications since inception. We are committed to developing a culture and environment that celebrates diversity, equality and inclusion by promoting diversity in all forms and creating a safe environment for all employees, applicants and customers.