Vice President Research & Development

US-MA-Burlington | US-WA-Seattle | CA-QC-Montreal
Job ID
Research & Development - Management
Pos. Type
Full Time

Company Overview

Nuance Communications (Nasdaq: NUAN / is a pioneer and market leader in cognitive and conversational technologies for organizations around the world. Since 2001, Nuance has delivered voice, natural language understanding and AI innovations that simplify how people interact with the machines and devices around them.


The company develops customized conversational and AI innovations that understand, analyze, and respond to human language in natural and intuitive ways – from connected cars and intelligent virtual agents to AI-powered healthcare solutions that improve patient care. These solutions bring intelligence to work and life, transforming the way people experience technology through solutions that improve productivity and amplify human intelligence.


Nuance works with thousands of companies – in global industries that include healthcare, telecommunications, automotive, financial services, and retail – to create stronger relationships and better experiences for their customers and workforce. The Company offers deep vertical market expertise and scalable, independent technologies and platforms, and professional services. An unwavering commitment to its customers has helped Nuance earn trusted relationships with many of the world’s most respected companies including Audi, BMW, Bank of America, Banma, Barclays, Cerner, Cleveland Clinic, Comcast, Citi, Daimler Mercedes-Benz, Epic, Ford, HSBC, Mayo Clinic, Telefonica, Toyota, UPMC, Verizon, and Vodafone.


Nuance is an organization steeped in research and development. With more than 1,800 researchers, scientists, developers and engineers; an annual R&D budget exceeding $300 million; and, a strong IP portfolio, the company is dedicated to continually refining its technologies and advancing its solutions to best meet customers’ diverse and changing needs. Nuance innovations include speech recognition, natural language understanding, machine leading, semantic processing, analytics, biometrics, optical character recognition, and dialog and information management.


The company is headquartered in Burlington, MA and employs approximately 15,000 individuals in 45 operating locations and has a sales presence in more than 75 countries. In its fiscal year 2017, the company’s revenue is estimated to exceed $2 billion to complement strong margin profiles and cash flow from operations.


Nuance Nuance Businesses


Nuance Nuance delivers its solutions through four core business segments:


  • Nuance Healthcare builds intelligent solutions that support a more natural and insightful approach to clinical documentation across the care continuum, allowing physicians to spend more time caring for their patients and less time on administrative rework. Nuance healthcare’s solutions capture documentation and deliver real-time intelligence at the point of decision making resulting in greater accuracy, saved time, and appropriate financial reimbursement. With deep partner integrations across the healthcare ecosystem and decades of clinical expertise, Nuance healthcare provides a more complete and accurate view of patient care to improve the clinical and financial outcomes for more than 500,000 clinicians in 10,000 healthcare organizations worldwide.
  • Nuance Enterprise is focused on reinventing the relationship between businesses and consumers through intelligent customer service and engagement solutions powered by AI. These solutions are differentiated by speech, voice biometrics, virtual assistant and cognitive technologies that enable cross-channel customer service for IVR, mobile and web, inbound and outbound models, and are supported by the design and development skills of a global professional services team. This business serves Fortune 2500 companies across the globe with a mix of direct and channel partner selling models.
  • Nuance Mobile is focused on developing cognitive and conversational AI solutions that give automakers and service providers the ability to amplify the intelligence of connected cars, smart homes and subscriber engagement.  Unparalleled offerings in voice, AI, and text-input solutions can understand what is said, intelligently analyze the right data, and respond with outcomes and digital experiences that make life and work more productive – behind the wheel, in the home and on-the-go.  Nuance’s deep market expertise provides the ability to deliver fully-customizable solutions that are powerful and proven.


  •  Nuance Imaging builds OCR and document workflow solutions that help people work faster and smarter. Focused on addressing key industry trends, such as document security, regulatory compliance, and cost-effective integrated print and capture management solutions, this business is developing the next generation of secure, context-aware document management technologies that can identify and understand content, and automatically route and adjust permissions accordingly.


Job Summary

Reporting to the EVP and General Manager of the Enterprise Division, the Vice President of R&D will manage a global team responsible for the development and delivery of the division’s speech, voice biometrics, Inbound IVR & Outbound Cloud solutions.  The VP R&D will manage the day-to-day execution by the teams for all tasks required to drive completion of projects on time and within budget. In addition, the R&D leader will drive continuous improvements, resource and cost optimization programs and other strategic initiatives, including leverage of offshore resources.

This is a highly visible role, interfacing with senior executives across the business (Cloud Engineering and Operation, Professional Services, Product Management, and Sales).  The ideal candidate will have a clear sense of urgency and demonstrated track record of driving innovation leading to the introduction of new technologies in the marketplace. 



  • Lead the Division’s innovation technology and product and solutions agenda and teams supporting the business, including the Nuance Voice and Security lines of business.
  • Manage 200+ professionals in product development and quality assurance responsible for all delivery aspects of the Enterprise products.
  • Promote a culture of innovation, accountability, and excellence inside R&D and across the organization.
  • Optimize the Division’s software platforms across On-premise and Cloud, including new and acquired technology/solutions; create and manage an effective process for the continual improvement of the R&D organization.
  • Partner with business line GMs and functional leaders on short and long-term product development and distribution plans
  • Create and implement headcount optimization strategies, including leveraging offshore and/or low-cost R&D resources.
  • Develop and implement annual financial plans, budgets and facilitate regular operational reviews; ensure on-time and on-budget delivery and effective execution of strategic programs including roadmap deliverables
  • Interact with project managers, marketing, sales, customers and other end users to define system or application requirements and modification specifications
  • Devise/track and report on key performance indicators.

Number of Years of Work Experience: 10 -15 Years


Required Skills: 

  • Minimum of 10-15+ years engineering leadership experience with a strong track record of successful development and delivery of complex, enterprise class software that resulted in material market impact.
  • 5+ years direct experience leading teams within speech recognition, natural language understanding, contact center solutions, with experience within on-premise and Cloud delivery models
  • A highly driven leader that is known to deliver in a high growth and highly dynamic environment.
  • Has inherent knowledge of development processes and best practices to manage multiple software development projects effectively and deliver on time and on budget.
  • Demonstrated experience of setting the vision, building, leading and motivating large, global engineering teams (200+).
  • 10+ years leading /managing engineering teams at scale in large environments
  • 5+ years in relevant Cloud/IaaS experience
  • Strong experience leveraging open-source software at a large scale
  • Proven experience developing and driving technical strategy within an enterprise focused company

Education: Bachelor’s Degree in the field of computer science, engineering or related field; Master’s degree preferred.



Additional Information

Nuance Communication Inc. is an equal opportunity employer. We evaluate qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status, and other legally protected characteristics. The EEO is the Law poster is available here: . If you need a reasonable accommodation because of a disability for any part of the employment process, please call 781-565-5000 – Human Resources Department and let us know the nature of your request and your contact information.

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