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Chief Operating Officer

£120,000 + Benefits & Equity

The Company

We are an award-winning and accredited education services business with over 25 years of expertise and are delighted to have recently won the ‘Payroll & HR Provider’ Award 2020 from The Rewards for the third consecutive year and the ‘Education Business Services’ Award from the Education Investor Global UK Awards 2020.

Part of the Citation Group and Private Equity backed, this in an incredible opportunity to join a fast-paced and acquisitive division who are leading the way in the education sector. EPM and Avec Partnership represent the Education Division on Citation Group with our main office based in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire and our second office based in Darlington, North East.

We are 100% dedicated to education and our expert team of over 240 highly qualified employees support more than 2,350 Schools and Trusts nationwide.

Technology is key to our business; however, people are at the heart of what we do. Our culture is unique and built upon the motivation and passion of our team. We encourage our employees to flourish and unleash their talent by building their confidence and providing them with the opportunities and support to empower them and realise their full potential. By delivering the best for our employees, we empower them to deliver the best for our customers. This approach has made our outstanding customer retention rate possible.

EPM’s performance in the market has been and continues to be, exceptional, resulting in significant growth year after year. Our success can be attributed to our proactive, forward-thinking approach and passionate team. Our strategy is people and customers first with continual growth across the education sector.

Purpose of the Job

The Chief Operating Officer (COO) is a key senior leadership role, reporting directly into the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and working alongside the CCO and CFO. This role will sit on the Education Division’s most senior decision-making boards, including the Executive Board.

As COO you will be responsible for leading significant advisory and transactional operations, which would also encompass the day-to-day management of IT across the education division. The main focus of this role would be to lead a collaborative team with strong, efficient processes and guiding the senior leadership team on the evolving operational landscape. You will deliver a best in class approach to operational performance and management data to support board and executive decision-making.  You will do this through leading and structuring operational high performance to support our ambitious growth plans.

The post-holder will be required to exercise their judgment over complex cross-organisation projects including complex IT programmes and all in a highly demanding stakeholder environment, including reforming our ways of working and use of technology.

This role will play a central part of the Education Division’s transformation, taking the lead on operational improvements that will make the business as efficient and dynamic as possible. As well as ensuring the right operational infrastructure, systems and processes are in place to enable this.

As COO you will drive changes in technology, develop a culture of high performance and internal processes that provide the foundation for the division.

Main Responsibilities/Duties of the Job

1.Organisational leadership – leading on all strategic and operational activities. You will work closely with the CEO, CCO and CFO to deliver the Education Division strategy

2.To ensure the Operational Teams (IT, Payroll & Pensions, HR, Customer Service and Transformation) have measurable objectives, regular reviews of performance and the opportunities to develop skills, leading to a culture of high performance and continuous improvement

3.Deliver sustainable and appropriate operating and quality standards so the Education Division has the ability to consistently retain and delight customers whilst meeting our ambitious growth objectives

4.Ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements across the Education Division

5.Monitor, evaluate and report operational progress against strategic objectives and our Value Creation Plan (VCP)

6.Responsible for leading the production of credible, comprehensive, and timely operational analysis to inform decision making at various levels across the division

7.Building plans and strategies to enable and support the operational scalability of the division

8.Advisor on all issues relating to operational functions, keeping abreast of latest developments to ensure that the Education Division adapts and continues to deliver against its VCP

9.Providing leadership to Directors, Heads of, for functional areas including, Payroll & Pensions, HR, Customer Services, Transformation (Change Programme) and IT

10.Leading response to the current pandemic to enable our division to continue to react flexibly. Including leading on new ways of working, continuous improvement of delivery and policies to support our VCP

11.Accountable for IT, systems, system development and maintenance, oversight of outsourced relationships to ensure quality is monitored to service level agreements/standards

12.Accountable for operational budgets, output and customer satisfaction

13.Change management – programme/project participation and implementation

14.Translate our VCP and strategic direction into actionable goals, implementing organisation-wide goal setting, performance management, as well as annual and medium-term business planning