Director, Operations, New Opportunities
Director, Operations, New Opportunities
Location - Nairobi, Kenya or Lagos, Nigeria. This role involves significant travel - expect 75%.
Who We Are
Bridge partners with governments, donors, and parents to ensure that every child has access to an education that develops her full potential and creates the foundation for prosperity for the country. We are dedicated to supporting teachers, empowering school leaders, and ensuring every child has the learning support needed to master the national syllabus and have the confidence to succeed in a competitive world. Each of our project or country teams are supported through expertise and programming from additional offices around the world, combining world-leading expertise in core design areas with locally resident leadership and execution. We leverage experts, data, and technology in order to support and scale every aspect of quality education delivery. Bridge managed and supported schools are technology enabled and data-driven to ensure accountability in the classroom for both teachers’ performance and children’s learning.
The Bridge model delivers significant learning outcomes at large scale by combining technology and customized learning materials. At Bridge, we believe innovation and technology can transform learning. Our model – which uses technology to deliver thoroughly researched and carefully designed daily lesson guides to teachers in our academies – is proven to increase learning outcomes for children. We are a solutions-driven, implementation-focused organization, using design principles to work in varied and often highly constrained contexts to ensure learning outcomes and positive development for children. Working in regional and national scales is important to us, as empowering entire generations of children with the core knowledge, skills, and confidence is what builds the foundation for a peaceful and prosperous future for us all.
Our mission is to provide our pupils with life-changing education and we believe that every child should have a right to a world-class education regardless of her family’s income. Core to our approach is the conviction that every child can learn, as long as the school she attends is committed to her development and puts her needs to learn at the forefront of all decisions. We have seen teachers and children transform and excel in both government and private schools that we support and manage.
We invite you to join this incredible endeavor that is having a world-changing impact across multiple continents. You will join a team of dedicated change-makers committed to ensuring that each decision we make keeps a child’s experience of learning as its guiding principle.
New Opportunities brings the majority of our extensive breadth of technical expertise to ensure large scale transformation of education systems into one team. This team kick-starts new programs in new countries. Each member of the team is responsible for a core area of expertise, and then setting up all work and functions related to that expertise in the new program/new country. This includes putting all relevant policies, practices, systems and technology in place, and leading the hiring of the leader who will take charge of this work as the permanent lead for this body of work. This is Bridge’s SWAT team, with specialists brought together to solve the critical and urgent problem of launching a state or nation-wide new program. This team must work collaboratively, thrive in creating order out of chaos, and understand that proactive problem solving is a daily task. All members of this team should expect extensive travel to remote and underserved areas, and to be resident in 2 other locations per year, setting up new programs. When not deployed on starting a specific program, each team member will do work with the core technical team which he or she represents, to support special projects, deepen technical knowledge, and otherwise advance in the field. This team is critical to Bridge delivering on our shared vision of transforming the lives of 10,000,000+ children, and in so doing seeing peace and prosperity where we work.
The schools run by Bridge, have to operate in the most efficient and effective way possible to enable us provide life changing education that is affordable to families living below the poverty line, and to governments with limited resources. This means there is no room for waste and inefficiencies. The Operations Team is responsible for the design, execution and management of the entire sequence of processes required to service the activities of each school, and for providing that support at scale in the most cost efficient and effective way possible. Operations is the nerve centre of the company and is the interface that brings all school-level support functions together. Our mission is to provide a better service for our parents and governments, a better experience for our employees, and a stable platform on which we continue to scale our work.
About the Role
The Director, Operations is responsible for setting up the processes, systems and staff to ensure operational performance of the entire network of schools under management in each new territory. This includes programme management, supply chain, quality assurance and customer care.
●Programme Management - managing programme managers responsible for everything from preventative fraud management, facilities and repairs, instructional and academic delivery through systems compliance
●Supply Chain - overseeing our warehousing, inventory management, procurement and logistics, making sure every school has all the resources needed in the most cost-effective and efficient way possible, while negotiating with global suppliers;
● Quality Assurance - our internal data-driven, field-based audit and monitoring team;
● Customer Care Call Centre - serving both as the support hub for our school leaders, teachers and parents;
You will be responsible for ensuring every school operates effectively; That school staff are supported by being provided with the correct tech assets, learning materials and teaching supplies; That an accurate count of all learning materials and supplies is maintained; That instructional delivery runs effectively by ensuring accurate forecast of learning material needs, proper maintenance of existing inventory and on time delivery of projected quantities; That the provision of service to ensure all issues are captured and resolved, is carried out in a prompt, professional and caring manner; and That continuous data collection and analyses is used to quality assure and drive process improvements
This is a high-impact role for someone who loves standing up systems and processes from the ground up and taking on challenges in large scale. Eventually, you will hire your permanent replacement for this market, ensuring (s)he is set up to succeed even after you leave to begin work in another new market.
What You Will Do
● Research and determine optimal supply chain networks in new territory (logistics, materials warehousing and distribution chains).
● Set up Technical Support (Customer Care) Operations, and Program Management Operations in territory (or nearest territory), including hiring and training personnel as needed.
●Work with the Director, Quality Assurance to augment (or complement) government partner Quality Assurance processes, and to support hiring and training of QA resources.
● Manage a diverse support team including customer care, quality assurance, IT, programme managers, procurement, warehousing and logistics.
● Work with and leverage team support from the global teams to ensure operations are aligned to global processes and systems.
● Be responsible for all operational performance indicators of our academies, including but not limited to:
○ Improving adherence and compliance to existing systems and processes
○ Striving for operational excellence in a resource-constrained environment
○ Continually iterating and improving systems
○ Building a zero-tolerance environment for fraud and leakage
○ Learn, reinvent, optimize and manage every aspect of the operations of a Bridge International Academy and the necessary headquarters support, from supplies management to classroom instruction to cleaning to customer care.
○ Create highly-structured, insightful processes, systems and recommendations with a data-driven approach; and, alongside senior executives, critique and modify the operational components of the Bridge model.
○ Do or lead every job in the entire academy operations and support to some extent. No job is too big or too small.
●At least 8+ years of post-undergraduate, full time work experience
● Work experience managing a multi-unit retail environment
● Work experience in emerging markets
● Work experience, preferably in operations, as an employee at any company that has rapidly grown in headcount and number of locations, e.g., large scale retail
●Work experience in a fast-paced environment with dynamic priorities and demands
● Work experience developing and managing a culture of total focus on customer satisfaction
●Work experience drastically improving the productivity and reducing cost of a product or service
● Work experience managing and coordinating several teams to deliver on a tight schedule
● Record of building data-driven operational systems
● Record of engaging in and leading cross-functional teams and initiatives
●Record of strong academic performance from a leading undergraduate and, if attended, graduate institution
● Excellent written and verbal communication skills
● Excellent organizational, leadership, analytical problem solving and strategic thinking skills
● High integrity with zero tolerance for any unethical business practices
● A detailed doer – You have a track record of getting things done. You’re organized and responsive. You take ownership of every idea you touch and execute it to a fine level of detail, setting targets, engaging others, and doing whatever it takes to get the job done. You can multi-task dozens of such projects at once and never lose sight of the details. Likely, you have some experience in a start-up or other rapid-growth company.
● A creative problem-solver – Growing any business from scratch comes with massive and constant challenges. On top of that, Bridge works in often fragile, sometimes volatile low-resource communities and with complex government systems. You need to be flexible and ready to get everything done effectively, quickly, and affordably with the materials at hand.
● A relentless advocate – The children we serve and teachers we empower never leave your mind. You know them, get them, have shared a meal with them (or would be happy to in the future). You would never shrink back from shaking a parent’s hand or picking up a crying child, no matter what the person was wearing or looked like. Every decision you make considers their benefit, experience, and value.
● A malleable learner – You believe you can always do better. You welcome constructive criticism and provide it freely to others. You know you only get better tomorrow when others point out where you’ve missed things or failed today.
● A data-driven decision-maker – When making decisions, you don’t rely on your intuition alone. You collect data, you analyze it and make decisions with clear justifications.
● A curious investigator – You ask why a lot. You don’t just take what you see and accept it. You wonder why it is that way, and are aware that the world we see is created by human choices and actions – and it could be different. You wonder, and see the world as wonderful even when you want to change a part of it that is unjust.