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Head of Global Operations - GED

British Council
London, United Kingdom
Competitive Salary
Closing date
Jan 15, 2022

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Job Role
Contract Type
Full Time
Level of qualification
Qualified, CIMA
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The British Council builds connections, understanding and trust between people in the UK and other countries through arts and culture, education and the English language.

We work in two ways - directly with individuals to transform their lives, and with governments and partners to make a bigger difference for the longer term, creating benefit for millions of people all over the world. We help young people to gain the skills, confidence and connections they are looking for to realise their potential and to participate in strong and inclusive communities. We support them to learn English, to get a high-quality education and to gain internationally recognised qualifications. Our work in arts and culture stimulates creative expression and exchange and nurtures creative enterprise. We connect the best of the UK with the world and the best of the world with the UK.

These connections lead to an understanding of each other's strengths and of the challenges and values that we share. This builds trust between people in the UK and other nations which endures even when official relations may be strained. We work on the ground in more than 100 countries. In 2019-20 we connected with 80 million people directly and with 791 million overall, including online and through our broadcasts and publications.

Head of Global Operations- Global Exams Delivery

Location UK & UAE

Role Purpose

To offer strategic management of global operations ensuring resources can quickly respond to changes in demand across the business. To create, manage and monitor the end-to-end global exams delivery central operation including but not limited to ACCA, Global Marking, Indicator and IOL operations., This post will be responsible for creating all charging model for centralized operations and digital products, SLA and contracts and holding to account via performance measures and KPI's. This role is also ultimately responsible for overseeing efficient resource planning for all operations within the remit of Global Exams Delivery.

Main opportunities and challenges for this role:
  • Dealing with different types of paper-based and computer delivered exams
  • Working to immovable fixed deadlines and paying attention to detail to work across multiple venues
  • Implement and embed a new approach to centralised global operations
  • Set up Operations team ang global hubs to manage IELTS Indicator/IELTS Online tests, Remote Proctoring Hubs.
  • Opportunity to manage end to end process across a global context in a new operating model
  • Working with finance to agree and monitoring a charging model for delivery
  • Agreeing and monitoring contracts and SLA's and holding to account through performance measures and KPIs

Main accountabilities but not limited to the following:

Service delivery
  • Strategises and develops 3-5-year Global Exams Delivery Operations vision, including continuous improvements centralised operations for digital products and Examiner Management across the regions, making sure new standards and processes are integrated successfully.
  • Implements a range of standardised operational procedures and systems for IOL operations, Service Hubs and Marking Operations achieving clearly measurable KPIs with regards to revenue, volume, impact, time and cost.
  • End to end oversight of resourcing within the GED Operations and remote proctoring hubs to ensure delivery to standard and cost.
  • Translates regional and SBU strategies into annual work plans across multiple and competing strands of business activity and deploys resources efficiently and cost effectively to deliver required income, impact and profitability targets.
  • Liaises closely with regional and SBU colleagues to clarify, agree, and re-negotiate (as necessary) local targets in terms of quality/revenue/margin/volume/impact/time/cost
  • Implements, reviews and re-prioritises the work plans of multiple teams working across a range of business strands in the light of revised corporate requirements, operational changes and local social/economic or political events

Relationship & stakeholder management
  • Develops and maintains excellent relationships and communication with internal and/or external customers across a range of service/product/programme and geographical areas to build a clear understanding of their needs/experiences, to inform and enable medium-term innovation and improvements in the quality of Marking, Service Hubs and Remote Proctoring hub delivery.
  • In accordance with agreed regional and SBU strategies, acts as a figurehead in local cultural relations/commercial/collaborative activities, managing a range of relationships with important external stakeholders (e.g. sponsors, customers, partner agencies) to achieve positive outcomes for the BC and facilitate effective operational delivery in moderately complex political and/or commercial contexts.

Analysis & reporting
  • Reviews current management information and reporting protocols, recommending and/or implementing improvements, as necessary, to enable more effective and robust operational planning and decision-making
  • Uses standard data analytics and reporting tools to validate strategies and operational planning.
  • Ensures effective cost management for Marking operation, Marking and Remote Proctoring hubs and IOL Operations through cost drivers analysis, strategic positioning and value chain analysis

Risk & compliance
  • Reviews agreed corporate risk management protocols to determine whether they adequately protect the interests of the BC in the local operating context. Recommends revision and reform where necessary, basing proposals on evidence-based analysis of current/future risks and research into wider best practice and/or legislative requirements.

Commercial & resource management
  • Proposes annual budgets and undertakes detailed resource planning to enable cost effective, high quality delivery of operational activities across a range of business strands in the country or client contract. Monitors, analyses and reports variances to plan to enable in-year and medium-term improvements to operational efficiency and business effectiveness.
  • Co-ordinates a range of financial, productivity and cost/benefit analyses of operational activity in Marking Operations, Marking and Remote Proctoring Hubs, IOL Operations, ACCA operations and other Distribution exams Operations to enable the development of robust corporate medium-term investment decisions.

Leadership & management
  • Provides inspiring and motivational leadership that role-models the British Council's values and behaviours, and empowers and enables staff to deliver excellence, whilst promoting equity, diversity and inclusion.
  • Sets the vision, direction and annual business plan for their operational unit, to ensure defined business objectives across a range of business strands are realised in accordance with the overarching BC strategy and that of the region. Time horizons are largely annual, with an awareness of medium-term developments.
  • Defines the workforce requirements, including training/development & resources to ensure effective and high-quality operational delivery of BC priorities and plans
  • Ensure integration of change, with active monitoring, tracking & sharing of progress, key learnings in regional and with relevant Global and Regional product Teams

Role specific knowledge and experience:
  • Leadership and Managing People - Leads a substantial group to deliver annual business objectives. The team includes different professions, culture and or locations
  • Experience of monitoring & evaluation.
  • Experience of working with and/or leading virtual teams to deliver business objectives/ programmes.
  • Demonstrable experience of maximizing business opportunities by flexing and deploying global resources to match peaks in demand
  • Demonstrable experience of successfully setting and monitoring budgets for end-to-end process.
  • Demonstrable evidence of successfully negotiating and monitoring charging back models with internal finance departments.
  • Demonstrable experience of successful delivery across end-to-end process including demonstration of performance targets and KPI's.
  • Demonstrable evidence of setting and agreeing SLAs and managing contract performance against agreed KPIS - for both providers and internal delivery partners.
  • Demonstrable experience of working with Business Assurance/compliance functions to action and make improvements to ensure quality and compliance standards are maintained.
  • Strong knowledge of Best Practices of Operations
  • Systematic thinker who has successfully built processes and systems that have helped Operations be more efficient and effective.

Further Information
  • Pay Band - PB SMPL + additional London weighting of £3,300
  • Contract Type - indefinite
  • Location - UK
  • Requirements - Must have the current legal rights to work in the UK .
  • Closing date for applications Sunday 16th January 2022

A connected and trusted UK in a more connected and trusted world.

Equality , Diversity, and Inclusion(EDI) Statement

The British Council is committed to policies and practices of equality, diversity and inclusion across everything we do. We support all staff to make sure their behaviour is consistent with this commitment. We want to address under representation and encourage applicants from under-represented groups, in particular, but not exclusively, on grounds of ethnicity and disability. All disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria are guaranteed an interview and we have Disability Confident Employer Status. We welcome discussions about specific requirements or adjustments to enable participation and engagement in our work and activities.

The British Council iscommitted to safeguarding children, young people and adults who we work with.

We believe that all children and adults everywhere in the world deserve to live in safe environments and have the right to be protected from all forms of abuse, maltreatment and exploitation as set out in article 19, UNCRC (United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) 1989.

Appointment to positions where there is direct involvement with vulnerable groups will be dependent on thorough checks being completed; these will include qualification checks, reference checks, identity & criminal record checks in line with legal requirements and with the British Council's Safeguarding policies for Adults and Children.

If you have any problems with your application please email

Please note: Applications to this role can only be considered when made through the Apply section of our careers website. Our 'ASK HR' email is only to be used in case of a technical issue encountered when applying through the careers website. Emails with supporting statements and CV/Resumes sent to this email address will not be reviewed and will be deleted.
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