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Operations Lead


  • Location: Farringdon, London, UK/Home-based
  • Contract type: Permanent, full-time
  • Salary: £39100 - £46000
  • Closing date: 25th August 2023
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Operations Lead

We have an exciting opportunity for an Operations Lead to join our Humanitarian Leadership Academy (HLA) to have oversight and accountability of the HLA's Operations and enable high levels of operational efficiency with regards to contract and award management, excellent financial management, effective decision making and responsiveness to stakeholder needs.

About the role

The Operations Lead sits within the operations team within the HLA, which is responsible for ensuring operational excellence and high performance.  The Operations Lead will support the Head of Operations, and work with the Operations Officer to refresh and redesign HLA’s Operating Model to align with the new HLA strategy. Due to the broad brief of the Operations team, this role will take on accountability for the charitable activities, as well as supporting the Head of Operations across the entirety of the operations brief.

The purpose of this role is to enable high levels of operational efficiency with regards to contract and award management, excellent financial management, effective decision making and responsiveness to stakeholder needs. You will work across all areas of the HLA covering commercial and charitable activities balancing the needs of different funding streams as well as the growing revenue from commercial activities

In this role, you will: 

Oversight and accountability for the HLA’s Operations business as usual including:

  • Accountable for the successful delivery and financial and contract management of the HLA, its donor programmes and commercial operations including governance, legal and award management, through overseeing/implementing effective project management approaches.
  • Implement effective processes and systems for financial and operational insight and decision making
    • Lead on the development and/or revision of operational systems, procedures and guidelines for award/contract management in the HLA’S team, ensuring these are fit-for-purpose.
  • Oversee financial and contractual management in the HLA
    • Manage categorisation of HLA-E deferred income for SCUK audit purposes
    • Oversee the HLA monthly staff salary recharge tracker function
    • Liaise with other SCUK and SCI donor-related and fundraising teams to address complex or systemic issues, provide coordinate messages, and ensure needs and funding gaps are effectively prioritised.
    • Responsible for the risk management of the HLA-C and HLA-E portfolios, ensuring that award risk assessments are completed and periodically reviewed, taking timely actions to mitigate risk when needed.
    • Work with SCUK Legal on an ongoing basis to ensure that both new and existing HLA contracting is compliant with SCUK requirements.
  • Contract and award management
    • Ensure HLA robust systems are in place for both HLA-C and HLA-E learning products and services’ contracting, income processing, and compliance
    • Lead on the management and monitoring of contracts throughout the project cycle
    • Work closely with colleagues from across the HLA team to support in identifying and developing high quality donor proposals and service contracts
    • Provide advice on donor compliance, provide support or lead on donor relations strategies, leveraging on funding opportunities, strengthening movement-wide awareness on donors’ expectations etc. as required.
    • Monitor key controls to support effective management of the funding portfolio and compliance with the donor requirements.
  • Financial Management
    • Work closely with the HLA Finance Business Partner across donor financial reporting, HLA-E income and expenditure, and year-end processes.
    • HLA lead for both internal and external audits.
    • Working with SCUK Internal Audit, periodically run award/contract reviews to ensure that audit documentation is being adequately maintained and that all awards/contracts are compliant in case of audit.

 Line Management of Operations Officers

  • Ensure excellent line management oversight of direct reports and setting appropriate workplans and ensuring support and performance
  • Lead Operations delivery of Officer support to staff across the HLA team for completion and resolution of vendor invoice processing, procurement activities, and trading company contracting and financial management.

About you

The ideal candidate will be able to demonstrate leadership in supporting operations’ strategic planning to update our current operating model.  Accordingly, you must be able to manage a high number of competing priorities for high priority, time critical operations activities, whilst keeping perspective of how we may achieve higher efficiency and effectiveness across our financial and operational processes and systems.  Thus, the candidate must be able to apply at a strategic level ongoing lessons learnt from this role, for the greater purpose of improving HLA operational excellence.

It is important that you have:

  • Experience and knowledge of working with institutional and corporate donors
  • Strong understanding of award (grant/contract) management including but not limited to institutional donors.
  • Project coordination skills gained through managing complex cross-organisational projects with multiple stakeholders.
  • Strong project management experience and skills, with a knowledge of governance tools and techniques.
  • Excellent understanding of audit readiness and experience of the audit process.
  • Understanding of humanitarian programming and core principles, humanitarian quality frameworks (e.g. Sphere, CHS), and current humanitarian issues
  • Knowledge of project design and management, including logical frameworks, M&E concepts and budget monitoring
  • Good understanding of financial plans, budgets and reporting including construction and monitoring of budgets.
  • Strong team skills, with the ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships and collaborate both within and outside the team.
  • Excellent organisation and administration skills with the ability to plan and prioritise work for self and others.
  • Strong analytical skills with the ability to identify key points from complex material or information.
  • Commitment to Save the Children’s vision, mission and values.

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