Human Resources Business Partner/Site Leader

Phoenix, AZ
Feb 14, 2018
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
Human Resources Business Partner/Site Leader

**Position located in Phoenix, AZ**

WGU Mission

The principal mission of Western Governors University is to improve quality and expand access to post-secondary educational opportunities by providing a means for individuals to learn independent of time and place and to earn competency-based degrees and other credentials that are credible to both academic institutions and employers.

WGU Promise

We help our students achieve their dreams for a degree and career success by providing a personal, flexible, and affordable education based on real world competencies. We provide employees a meaningful, enjoyable and rewarding work experience.


We believe that one of the primary goals of the People & Talent team is to help achieve business results through people. In this important endeavor, the business partner will support business leaders by providing strategic guidance to ensure effective planning and implementation of key people initiatives that are aligned with WGU objectives. The business partner will support leaders to expand accountability, transparency, engagement, create a culture of learning, and enhance the employee experience.

Essential Functions

  • Foster and build relationships with business leaders.
  • Manage complex people projects cross-functionally, including competency model, job leveling, compensation, talent assessment, workforce planning, staffing and succession planning.
  • Analyze data to identify trends - develop solutions to address business issues and challenges.
  • Coach and advise business leaders to improve the employee experience, communication, employee growth and career development, working relationships, transparency and a culture of accountability.
  • Identify employee and leadership competency strengths and gaps. Collaborate with Learning & Talent Development to identify and leverage development offerings to close the gaps.
  • Play a key role in advancing a culture of learning, innovation, accountability and creative thinking.
  • Manage day-to-day people and site administration.
  • Participate in business meetings with senior leadership to understand business objectives and to determine the key ways People & Talent can impact the achievement of business objectives.
  • Support employee engagement efforts and initiatives to enhance overall employee engagement. Advocate for our culture and employee experience.
  • Guide managers to identify and resolve complex employee issues. Conduct effective, thorough and objective evaluations. Maintain in-depth knowledge of legal requirements related to people management, reducing liability, ensuring fair treatment of employees, and ensuring regulatory compliance. Partner with HR Director and legal department as applicable.
  • Business Acumen - know WGU overall and, in particular, assigned business groups both operationally and financially. Be able to articulate and manage to this.
  • Understand People & Talent processes, procedures and policies - apply them to people specific situations.
  • Partner with all People & Talent subject matter experts – we are one team supporting the business collectively.
  • Manage site leader responsibilities – site communications, practices, and culture champion communications. Represent corporate initiatives and priorities to the site team. Collaborate with site managers to create learning culture.
  • Drive continuous improvement of people-related processes.
  • Represent business unit interests/priorities/initiatives to People & Talent leadership and represent the goals and philosophies of the People & Talent team to business leaders.
  • Navigate the systems, processes and organization to support WGU’s mission, People & Talent strategic initiatives, and assigned business group objectives.

Competencies and Leadership Principles to Support the Achievement of these Job Functions:

  • Clear Effective Communicator – exceptional and persuasive communication skills. Communicates to improve and promote teamwork, decision-making, and problem solving. Listens and responds effectively to the reactions and positions of others and encourages the expression of diverse ideas and opinions. Adjusts message and style to fit the audience. Communicates appropriately to win support with all.
  • Managerial Courage – willing to tackle difficult topics and conventional thinking; doesn’t hold anything back that needs to be said.
  • Develops and Earns Trust – works effectively across functions, internalizing their motivations and priorities, and energizing others’ engagement in devising solutions and driving execution; a personal style that favors inquiry over advocacy, listening over speaking. Represents own interests while being fair to others and their ideas. Partners with others to get work done. Credits others for their contributions and accomplishments. Gains buy-in, trust and support of others.
  • Inquisitive Analytical Thinker – a data-driven thinker, who effectively diagnoses root causes, and identifies primary drivers of performance outcomes. Obsesses about controllable inputs, and defines and priorities activities to change them for the positive.
  • Great Judgement – deals effectively with paradox; exhibits good instincts, while willing to make tough calls, with some degree of adaptability.
  • Ambiguity – deals comfortably with the uncertainty of change, even in the absence of all Effectively handles risk. Can decide and act without the total picture. Is calm and productive, even when things are up in the air. Deals constructively with problems that do not have clear solutions or outcomes.
  • Thinks Big/Innovation – Is confident under pressure. Handles and manages crises effectively. Maintains a positive attitude despite adversity. Bounces back from obstacles and setbacks. Grows from hardships and negative experiences.
  • Delivers Results/Bias for Action – Has a strong outcomes based orientation. Persists in accomplishing objectives despite obstacles and setbacks. Has a track record of successfully exceeding goals. Pushes self and helps others achieve results to positively impact WGU and our students. Has a continuous improvement mindset.
  • Leads Change – Is an agent for change, influences others to accept change. Effectively demonstrates own ability to change, shifts gears comfortably, decides and acts without having the complete picture; comfortably handles risk and uncertainty.

Required Education, Skills and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in HR Management or related field of study
  • 5+ years’ experience in Human Resources, to include program initiatives, in fast-growth environments, in a distributed workforce model supporting remote employees, preferably also having people leadership experience
  • Experience supporting large groups of employees (1,000+)
  • Ability to establish presence and credibility quickly – to become a trusted adviser to leaders
  • Strong understanding of employment law and other state and federal compliance regulations
  • Ability to make recommendations to effectively resolve problems or issues, by using sound judgment consistent with applicable laws and WGU philosophies and practices
  • Ability to objectively and effectively coach leaders through complex, difficult, and emotional issues within a diverse organization
  • Demonstrated ability to apply data management and analysis tools in researching and analyzing various types of data
  • Strong business acumen
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills – ability to articulate and influence
  • Experience with MS Office products, HRIS Systems, Applicant Tracking Systems, and Performance Management Systems
  • PHR or SPHR certification preferred
  • Ability to travel as needed (10% or less)

Phoenix, Arizona, United States