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Head of Operations - Education/Birmingham Business School - Grade 8 - 14506

University of Birmingham
United Kingdom
£43414- £51805
Closing date
Sep 29, 2022

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Position Details x 2

School of Education and Birmingham Business School

Location: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham UK

Full time starting salary is normally in the range £43,414 to £51,805, with potential progression once in post to £58,284

Grade 8

Full Time


Closing date: 9th October 2022

Our offer to you

People are at the heart of what we are and do.

The University of Birmingham is proud to have been a part of the City of Birmingham and the wider region for over 100 years, and we are equally proud to be recognised as a leading global university.  We want to attract talented people from across the city and beyond, support them to succeed, and celebrate their success.

We are committed to helping the people who work here to develop through our sector-leading Birmingham Professional programme which provides all professional services staff with development opportunities and the encouragement to reach their full potential.  With almost 5,000 professional services jobs in a wide-range of functions in Edgbaston and in our campus in Dubai, there are plenty of opportunities for you to be able to develop your career at the University.

We believe there is no such thing as a typical member of staff and that diversity is a source of strength that underpins the exchange of ideas, innovation, and debate.  We warmly welcome people from all backgrounds and are committed to fostering an inclusive environment where diversity is at the heart of who and what we are, and how we work.

Supporting our people to achieve a healthy work/life balance is important both to our employees and to the success of the University and, depending on the role, we offer a variety of flexible working arrangements. We therefore welcome discussions on all forms of flexible working.  In addition, you will receive a generous package of benefits including 40 days paid holiday a year, one paid day a year for volunteering, occupational sick pay, and a pension scheme. We also have three high quality subsidised day nurseries.

The University is situated in leafy Edgbaston and there are excellent transport links to our beautiful campus, including main bus routes and a train station on site.  On campus we have a state-of-the-art sports centre with pool, shops, places to eat and drink, our own art gallery, museum and botanical gardens.

Find out more about the  benefits of working for the University of Birmingham  


The College of Social Sciences comprises the Schools of Social Policy, Government and Education and the Birmingham Business School. It is a vibrant community with over 12,000 students as well more than 500 academic staff and nearly 300 Professional Services staff across a range of disciplines and interdisciplinary fields. Our work impacts all areas of society from business and politics to education, justice, health, and social care. We have a highly diverse international staff body, teach programmes in Dubai, Singapore and online as well as in Birmingham, and we have over 100,000 alumni in more than 185 countries.

This role would initially be based in either the School of Education or Birmingham Business School

The original Department of Education was founded in 1896 and became the School of Education in 1947. It is one of the largest research-led schools of education in the UK employing over 100 academic staff who teach more than 2,500 students. It is also home to a number of departments and research centres.

With a population of more than 28,000 students including 4,000 international students from over 150 countries, Birmingham is one of the largest international student communities in the UK. We support International Students by familiarising them with the UK educational system and helping them to develop their academic English.

Birmingham Business School's vision is to promote curiosity and thought leadership for responsible business. Across its education and research frameworks, it is embedding a culture of responsible business and inclusive values and stepping up to be key contributors to the responsible business agenda. This is an exciting time to join Birmingham Business School which, along with just a handful of the world's business schools, holds the gold standard of 'triple-crown' accreditation from the AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business), AMBA (Association of MBAs) and EQUIS (European Quality Improvement System) and has recently been awarded a Bronze Athena Swan Award for its commitment to gender equality.

Professional Services play a crucial role in this by providing outstanding support to our researchers, enable an exceptional educational experience for our students, and help the University to grow its influence regionally, nationally, and globally. They ensure the University's resources are used wisely, manage and improve the infrastructure which sits at the heart of the institution, and support decisions to be made quickly and based on sound evidence. Our Birmingham Professional programme operates across the University, supporting colleagues to network and collaborate, offering opportunities to learn and develop, contributing to the delivery of the University's objectives, and helping everyone to understand the broader context within which we work.

Role Summary

The Head of Operations (HoOp) is a key role in each of our four Schools, taking responsibility for the operational running of the school, and to ensure the provision of high-quality, professional, and efficient service delivery of administration and support, which underpins School, College and University strategic priorities. It also has a significant role in developing and leading professional services across the College.

In Birmingham Business School, the Head of Operations supports the Director of Business School Operations and the Dean of the School, and the Head of Operations in the School of Education supports the Head of School. They are key members of the School Strategic Management team, College Professional Services Senior Leadership Team, and Operational Management Committee and will contribute to our ambitions to enhance the services we provide for teaching and world-leading research and an outstanding student experience. The role holder will lead on the planning, delivery and continuous improvement of operations or strategic projects/initiatives across the school and, where appropriate, College and University. The role holder will make a significant contribution to ensuring the school is committed to being a Responsible Business in its operations and practices

The Head of Operations will be required to think strategically with excellent communication and leadership skills, significant operational experience, and a commitment to continuous improvement of excellent service delivery through a collaborative and inclusive approach.

Main duties:

  • To take responsibility for the delivery of efficient and effective professional services in the School in support of our academic endeavour (Birmingham Business School only - Working closely with the Head of Education Operations)
  • Lead and manage professional services staff in the school within their area of responsibility, through intermediary managers as appropriate, to ensure delivery of the School's Strategy and by creating an empowering, solution focused environment for all colleagues, ensuring effective, positive working relationships at all levels
  • Lead staff through periods of change, communicating a clear and positive vision and acting as a role model.
  • Ongoing development and support for direct reports through coaching and training, both formal and informal.
  • Developing teams that consistently embody and demonstrate the University values, and an ability to lead by example. Working with senior Professional Services colleagues across the school, lead on the continuous improvement of operational service delivery
  • Working with senior Professional Services colleagues across the school, lead on the continuous improvement of operational service delivery
  • Deputise as appropriate

Strategic and Operational
  • Work in partnership with College Business Partners (as appropriate) to support the Head of School or Dean and Director of Business School Operations, in developing the School's Strategy in the context of the College Compact and the University Strategic Framework.
  • Engagement with strategic initiatives, including with external partners, ensuring that the required professional services contribution is made.
  • Work as part of the College Professional Services Strategic Leadership Team and Operational Management Committee to provide a critical link between University Professional Central Services, College and School. Balance local needs with overarching University and College objectives and ensure that practices are aligned wherever possible, ensuring the delivery of an outstanding student and academic experience.
  • Working closely with the College Head of Facilities, College Head of IT Support and wider facilities and IT colleagues, to ensure the school has appropriate facilities, in terms of buildings, equipment, IT and other relevant facilities and that these facilities are managed in an efficient and effective manner and support the school's strategic ambitions.
  • Monitor and maintain understanding of relevant emerging strategic, regulatory, and policy developments, and with best practice in the Higher Education and/or Business School sector and ensure knowledge is shared appropriately within the School and College.
  • Work closely with the College Finance Team, Head of School or Dean and Director of Business School Operations to understand the school's operational budget and support in year financial planning processes
  • Ensure the School has appropriate health and safety processes in place.

Governance and Compliance
  • Support the Head of School or Director of Business School Operations and Dean of the Business School in ensuring that the School has robust governance and decision making structures that are fully aligned with those at College and University level, advising School Executive on governance and compliance as appropriate
  • Lead role in understanding requirements for compliance with accreditation and regulatory bodies as relevant to the School, and responsibility for the operational aspects.
  • Ensure that the School has excellent secretariat services to support the School's committees in order to ensure that decisions made are communicated and followed up as appropriate;
  • To take the lead on ensuring that the School complies with University Regulations, all other University policies, procedures and guidelines, relevant legislation.

HR Management
  • Ensure appropriate HR strategies and procedures are in place for school members of staff to include induction, succession planning, training and development, performance management and review and reward mechanisms, working with College HR staff as appropriate to ensure compliance with University policy and procedures and relevant legislation
  • Ensure that effective and efficient processes and support are in place in relation to HR matters in the School, to include sickness and leave monitoring, recruitment process management and maintaining up-to-date and relevant staff records, working with College HR staff as appropriate to ensure compliance with University policy and procedures and relevant legislation;
  • Offer guidance to Professional Services managers, and Heads of Department in discharging their HR responsibilities to ensure compliance with University policy and procedures and relevant legislation

Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion
  • Actively promote equality, diversity and inclusion acting as a role model and fostering an inclusive working culture

  • Promote the Birmingham Professional agenda within the College and seek to support the Director of Operations and PSSLT in nurturing an empowering and supportive professional services environment with embedded partnership working with academic colleagues
  • Develop effective working relationships with the other Heads of Operations and senior professional services colleagues across the University.
  • To take on projects as requested by the College Director of Operations for the benefit of the wider College and University.
  • Perform other duties as requested, consistent with the duties commensurate with the grade.
  • As a Birmingham Professional at the University of Birmingham, you are expected to support key university activities and projects, for example, graduations, confirmation and clearing, and other key events and to work flexibly across the University if required.

Required Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications, Experience
  • Educated to Degree level (or equivalent qualifications) plus relevant operational experience in complex organisations, including, but not exclusively, higher education
  • Proven capability as a leader or manager, with a flexible and inclusive management style, appropriate to the complexity and diversity of the University
  • High levels of organisational skill, with an agile and adaptive approach
  • Demonstrable success of building relationships across a complex organisation with evidence of exceptional negotiating and influencing skills
  • Evidence of excellent communications skills including the ability to interact with different audiences
  • High degree of self-motivation and ability to motivate and lead others
  • Evidence of digital skills and capabilities to succeed in an evolving digital environment including MS 365
  • Ability to manage conflict effectively and handle sensitive and confidential issues
  • Significant experience of leading and developing teams
  • Experience of writing and presenting reports in a clear and well-structured manner for senior management, and to produce and analyse source material, information, and data
  • Experience of monitoring and reporting on budgets and an understanding of financial management procedures
  • A readiness to challenge the status quo with evidence of developing and implementing service excellence, and identifying continuous improvement opportunities
  • A commitment to people development and the organisational values that underpin the culture of the University
  • Evidence of a commitment to excellent service delivery
  • Experience of championing Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in own work area

Informal enquiries can be directed to Yvonne Hackforth-Williams, Director of Operations, College of Social Sciences, or Keith Portman, Director of Business School Operations, Birmingham Business School,

View our staff values and behaviours here

Valuing excellence, sustaining investment

We value diversity and inclusion at the University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community and are open to discussions around all forms of flexible working.
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