Head of Domestic Operations



Job Title:  Head of Domestic Operations
Department: Bursary
Location:  Darwin College, Silver Street, Cambridge CB3  9EU
Reporting to: Bursar
Responsible for: Catering, Accommodation, Housekeeping, Porters, and IT
Length of Appointment: Permanent
Probation Period: Six months
Salary Range: Not less than £43,000
Hours of Work: 35 hours per week Monday to Friday (with occasional out of hours work)
Annual Leave:  33 days including public holidays

Darwin College
Darwin College is probably the best known of the University of Cambridge’s graduate colleges.  Founded in 1964, it was the University of Cambridge’s first graduate-only College and the first College to admit both men and women. Today it is one of the larger Colleges with 65 Fellows and about 650 students. 
Darwin attracts a lively and diverse student population from every corner of the UK and around the world.  Students study for PhDs and Masters degrees in disciplines spanning the whole spectrum and the College provides its members with a rewarding, enjoyable and intellectually inspiring environment in which to pursue their education and research.  It is a supportive, informal community in which graduate students, researchers and Fellows meet together academically and socially so as to enrich and enlarge their scholarship and personal experiences, and to form lifelong connections and friendships.

The Post
The role of Head of Domestic Operations reports to the Bursar and is responsible for the operational management, including budgeting and forward planning, of the College Departments of Catering, Accommodation, Housekeeping, Porters and IT (the “domestic departments”). The role is to maintain and develop the key domestic functions supporting the College’s students, the wider College community, and College guests, and to ensure an efficient service is delivered across all these areas of operation. The post-holder will continue to innovate and explore opportunities for an enhanced service with the aim of providing an excellent experience for students, staff, fellows and visitors. The domestic departments currently comprise a staff of 36 (excluding casuals).
The College operates with a relatively small senior management team, and therefore some flexibility will be required to assist and participate in projects and other College functions and activities, as coordinated by the Bursar.

Key Responsibilities
Strategic planning:
The Head of Domestic Operations will be part of the senior management team reporting to the Bursar, engaging in developing broader strategic, financial and operational plans.

Leadership and Management:
The Head of Domestic Operations will:
• be the line manager for the heads of the domestic departments;
• lead and inspire all staff in the domestic departments to deliver outstanding service and will develop the systems and processes to support them in this; and
• mentor and motivate the domestic departments, implementing training where necessary and carrying out annual appraisals.

Departmental Budgeting and Planning:
The Head of Domestic Operations will:
• take budgetary responsibility, within a framework set by the Bursar, for the domestic departments;
• apply rigorous cost control to the domestic departments, adopting an approach of continuous improvement of service and value for money; and
• in conjunction with the Department Heads and the College Accountant:
o develop and monitor detailed annual budgets for the domestic departments; and
o produce, where appropriate, and implement longer term departmental plans.

Domestic co-ordination and liaison
The Head of Domestic Operations will:
• liaise with the College Accountant and with the College’s HR Manager and HR Administrator in relation to financial and HR matters respectively within the domestic departments as required;
• oversee all preparations within the domestic departments for the annual intake of students into College accommodation, ensuring that first impressions are positive and meet quality standards;
• liaise with the Student Association and with students generally on day to day non-academic issues;
• oversee the student run College Bar and May Ball and similar events;
• co-ordinate the College’s risk management and health and safety procedures, and business interruption planning; and
• assist the Bursar in relation to the domestic services aspects of building and refurbishment projects and generally as and when required.

College Governance
The Head of Domestic Operations will:
• act as secretary to the College Committees for Health and Safety, Meals, and PREVENT, liaising with the Committee Chairs, and issuing agendas, taking and producing accurate minutes, and coordinating actions arising; and
• attend as required and contribute to the College Committees for Information Services and Buildings & Grounds.

Regulatory responsibilities
The Head of Domestic Operations will:
• be responsible for ensuring the College complies with all legislation relevant to the domestic departments; and
• be the lead in College on regulatory compliance for:
• Health & Safety;
• UK Visas and Immigration for domestic staff;
• Accreditation Network UK; and
• Licencing for bar and catering.

The above is not an exhaustive list of duties. The post-holder may be asked to take on different tasks as required and all employees are expected to work collaboratively to support the overall work of the College.
The post of Head of Domestic Operations will sit within the College Bursary, comprising the Bursar, the HR Manager (part-time), and the Bursar’s PA/HR Administrator.
Applicants should note that the College does not propose to fill the post of Domestic Bursar as currently provided for in the College’s Ordinances (which are publicly available on the College website). The post of Head of Domestic Operations will carry with it many, but not all, of the responsibilities formerly vested in the Domestic Bursar. The College’s Ordinances will be updated accordingly in due course.

Person Specification  

Significant people management experience
Strong project management and
organisational skills
Significant experience of managing teams successfully with a culture of continuous improvement
Experience of managing budgets
Experience of managing operational risks in a regulated environment

Excellent leadership skills
A flexible approach to people management in order to achieve best outcomes
Strong financial acumen and entrepreneurialism
IT competent; ability to use Microsoft programmes including Excel (to at least ICAEW Spreadsheet Competency Framework General User level
Well organised, methodical and thorough
Ability to cope well with a varied workload and to change priorities in response to demand

Personal attributes 

Outstanding communication skills, written and verbal.  Able to produce management reports as well as communications material
Excellent interpersonal skills including the ability to adapt own communication style as necessary
Ability to motivate others and build teams addressing process issues where relevant, as well as people’s skills and knowledge
Flexibility to adjust to change and development of the College and the role

Application Process
To submit an application for this vacancy, please send your CV and a covering letter outlining your reasons for applying for the role to Mr John Dix, Bursar, Darwin College, Silver Street, Cambridge CB3 9EU bursar@darwin.cam.ac.uk by 5pm on Friday 29 June 2018. Interviews are provisionally scheduled for Monday 9 July and Monday 16 July.
For an informal discussion about the post, please contact the Bursar, Mr John Dix on the above email.
Any offer of employment is subject to evidence of your right to work in the UK and the receipt of satisfactory references.

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