Vice President of Human Resources – Empire Candle

Empire Candle’s mission is simple-to provide the best products and service to our customers at the best prices possible. We take great pride in our company, our commitment to customer service and in the products we sell. Tradition, quality, and value are at the core of what we do. Founded in 1951, Empire Candle Co. has gone beyond the industry standard to deliver high quality candles and fragrance innovations. As a full-service manufacturer of candles, wax melts, and home fragrance accessories we are always striving to improve our customers’ experience with our dynamic range of reliable products. Empire candle is a privately owned company headquartered in Kansas City, KS.


Reporting to the CEO, the Vice President of Human Resources (VPHR) provides leadership to and partners with the ELT to meet growth and performance objectives and foster an environment of employee engagement and development. The VPHR collaborates with Empire’s leaders to ensure HR practices and objectives that provide an employee-oriented, high-performance culture that attracts, develops, engages and retains top talent (The right people in the right roles) aligned with business objectives.

The incumbent has full responsibility for day-to-day operations of the associated functions to build organizational capability, maintain compliance with federal, state and local regulations while providing customer service to organizational leaders and employees. The VPHR directs processes impacting hiring, on-boarding, employee relations, compensation & benefits, terminations, record keeping, legal compliance, worker’s compensation, health & safety, unemployment, etc. The incumbent collaborates internally with leaders/managers to create/modify and implement the key programs of performance management, employee and leadership development, succession planning, employee engagement and internal communication.

This position is a member of the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) serving as a strategic partner in organizational planning and collaborating to support overall leadership of Empire’s business to maximize outcomes.

Essential Accountabilities

  • Develop and implement strategic and tactical plans for optimizing all aspects of Human Resources to increase employee engagement and desirable retention to positively impact the overall operations/results of Empire Candle.
  • Provide leadership and execution/direction for core HR processes delivering HR excellence in recruitment, performance management, succession planning, compensation and benefits, employee relations, and compliance.
  • Lead and develop HR team for continuous improvement and professional growth to build organizational capability.
  • Provide guidance and support to the executive team and senior leaders on performance management and employee relations issues, including employee and organizational development, training and organizational planning, change management, etc.
  • Foster continuous staff development by implementing learning and development programs to ensure education, skill development and career progression occurs regularly across all levels of the organization-Executive to front line.
  • Implement plans/tactics to ensure the Empire Candle people first culture reflects progressive, contemporary, collaborative, high performance characteristics that lead to greater levels of employee engagement and accountability.
  • Oversee attainment of Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) goals to ensure the safety and health of all human resources.


  • Bachelor’s degree in human resources, business or related area, or equivalent experience. Master’s degree a plus.
  • Minimum 8 years of increasingly responsible human resources experience including experience within the manufacturing industry and working directly with production and/or operations with a predominantly hourly workforce.
  • Extensive knowledge of Human Resource practices and related law, employee engagement, culture building, organization development, training and process improvement represented by a minimum of 8 years’ experience leading these activities. Experience as a top/C-level HR leader preferred.
  • Demonstrated broad business acumen and high level of professionalism and emotional maturity.
  • Demonstrated experience working effectively as an individual and part of a senior team.
  • Must have a strong customer focus and be able to build relationships and establish trust, respect, competence and confidence effectively and quickly.
  • Natural self-starter, decisive, high energy and can-do attitude. Excellent organizational and prioritization skills and demonstrate initiative and act in a proactive manner while applying critical thinking and fact-based results-orientation.
  • Proven ability to recruit, develop and retain staff. Motivate and provide positive direction and guidance to the human resources team; create a culture of respect for the individual and mutual trust amongst the team.
  • Exceptional communication both oral and written communication and demonstrated skill to work with all levels of employees displaying positive leadership characteristics.
  • Demonstrated presentation, coaching, and facilitation skills a plus.

How to apply:

Forward resume to For questions, call 913 579-8872.