Director, US Import Compliance

Role Title:
Director, US Import Compliance
Job Advert Description

The Director of US Import Compliance is responsible to lead and manage Clarks America’s trade compliance across the supply chain operations. The Director oversees multiple programs and processes aligning our procurement, shipping, and delivery efforts to ensure compliance with US Import Regulations outlined by the US Dept of Commerce, Customs and Border protection, Department of Treasury, USF&W & FTC and any other special trade programs or regulatory agencies. The Director monitors and directs Customs Compliance and continuing training programs as it relates to trade compliance.

Accountabilities: Own and drive the strategic Trade Compliance for the Clarks Americas. Trade Compliance Includes: Ensuring Clarks Americas comply with all US and Canadian Customs regulations to support the import of footwear into each country.

  • Collaborate with Global Supply Chain including Senior Management, Legal, Product, Logistics, Quality and Regulatory, Finance, Sourcing, etc., to drive strategic direction of trade compliance processes to ensure robust compliance management that meets current requirements of all countries and regions with which business is being conducted.
  • Work within the Americas to identify and implement short term and long-term strategic cost savings strategies, e.g. Duty engineering, FTA and FSFE
    • Duty engineering is the act of suggesting design changes to a shoe to get a more favourable duty rate which affect the profit margin of a shoe. For example, removing a heal support in an athletic shoe to qualify the the shoe as non-athletic this design change reduces the duty from 20% to 9%.
    • Free Trade Agreement Analysis (FTA) CPTPP and USMCA. Ensure that the shoes produced in the qualifying countries meet every requirement to qualify for the free or lower duty rate which is all dependent of each agreements qualification.
    • First Sale for Export (FSFE) The First Sale Rule enables U.S. companies to significantly reduce landed costs to capture duty and tax savings. A middleman is introduced into the transaction creating a three-tier transaction the buyer, middleman and the factory. The transaction between the middleman and the factory are at arm’s length which is minus the overhead costs the buyer can declare the lower valuation between the middleman and the factory thus creating the duty savings
  • Work with local management, businesses and IT to address unique needs appropriately. Leading projects and programs in line with agreed strategy and pipeline.
  • Develop and conduct regular global trade compliance trainings across businesses and functions.
  • Participate in regular external meetings/trainings funnel down any communications and/or training to the relevant personnel within the Americas and communicate any issues requiring escalation to the Executive Leadership Team
  • Keep abreast of pertinent regulations updates or changes that effect the business and respond accordingly to update all functions/personnel in the Americas that are affected by changes. Includes but not limited to:
    • New Free trade agreements
    • Potential duty changes due to a new congressional law or presidential executive orders
    • Sourcing decisions based upon a country’s political climate.
    • Trade sanctions announcements.
    • New regulations regarding labelling
  • Ability to interpret multiple, complex sets of regulations and determine what is relevant for each function of the Americas business
  • Mitigate risk to the organization through proactive process management ensuring that all activities are carried out in accordance with Clarks Americas policies, standards, and applicable laws in the area of import and export compliance
  • Audit preparation with US Customs and the Canadian Border Service Agency to ensure a smooth and successful audit is accomplished.
  • Manage trade compliance processes and performance
  • Develop and implement methods to communicate trade compliance performance for sites and functions in the division.
  • Initiate audits and support sites in internal assessments, desk audits, completion of post audit follow-up actions and evaluate common themes in audits and develop programs to proactively address issues across sites in the region.
  • Drive continuous process improvements to maximize customer delivery, quality, operational excellence and financial benefits associated with corporate standards and industry best practices.
  • Interface with internal and external customers, freight forwarders, Customs and other governmental authorities, customs brokers, on all matters pertaining to customs and import and export regulation
  • Manage CTPAT program and maintain the CTPAT portal
  • Classify products for the region using Range tracker and other mechanisms to ensure load into SAP Develop and maintain up-to-date article classification databases for the Americas
  • Track performance of Customs’ KPIs for monthly reporting
  • Coordinate record keeping methods across multi office locations.
  • Maintain current, up to date manuals concerning regional regulatory practices Provide direction to customs brokers to make corrections to customs entries when errors are found from internal Auditing effort by team
  • Manage small package clearance and queries from DHL, FedEx and UPS and update S&OP’s as needed


Knowledge: 5 to 8 years’ experience in the following:

  • Knowledge of Federal import trade regulations, as enforced by various government agencies, including US Customs and Border Protection, Food and Drug Administration, Environmental Protections Agency, United States Department of Agriculture, United States Fish and Wildlife Services and others
  • Knowledge of the International Freight Industry
  • Working knowledge of US and Canada Harmonized Tariff Classification
  • Awareness of principles of Warehousing and Distribution and FTZ management
  • HTS Classification efficiency and knowledge
  • Canada HS classification knowledge



  • Licensed Broker required
  • Experience in application of regulatory requirements, forms, licenses and certifications affecting imported and exported products
  • Project Management experience in the Regulatory arena



  • Basic financial and business acumen
  • Effective Decision Making
  • Good Project management skills
  • Ability to interpret business, financial, and operational information to recommend business decisions



  • Excellent oral and written Communication skills
  • Information technology skills, familiarity with FTZ software, SAP and Microsoft Office
  • Financial Analysis and Management
  • Analytical Skills
  • Project management skills
  • Organizational
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