Associate Director for Operations

Job description

Hyde Park Campus

2330020 Ctr For Economics Of Human Dev

About the Unit
Consistently ranked among the top ten social science research universities in the world, the Division of Social Sciences is at the vanguard of inquiry and impact. Whether through the field-defining scholarship of the Chicago Schools in Sociology and Economics, the path-breaking impact of the first graduate international affairs program in the U.S., the creation of interdisciplinary programs in the Department of Comparative Human Development and the John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought, or many other pivotal milestones, the Division has repeatedly transformed the social sciences since its founding in 1930. The Division offers PhD degrees in nine disciplines and Master of Arts degrees in five interdisciplinary fields. The Division also offers a number of joint degrees, and these collaborative initiatives uniquely position the Division to pioneer creative modes of thinking about society's most complex issues.

Job Information

Job Summary:

Reporting to the Director and Executive Director, the Associate Director for Operations will manage the daily operations of the center, in the areas of financial, grant and contract, human resource, and research administration while maintaining efficient and proactive day-to-day, as well as strategic long-term, achievement of goals.


The Associate Director will be responsible for a range of administrative activities for the Center:

  • Manage pre- and post- award grant and contract administration for sponsored activity, including directing and coordinating Center and Divisional / agency administration staff to accomplish tasks (proposal development, issuing subcontracts, financial reporting, etc);
  • Leading daily financial activities of the center, monitoring and reconciling accounts, collaboratively developing budgets, and researching, compiling, and analyzing financial data to create reports, proposals and other financial documents to facilitate strategic decision-making;
  • Direct financial strategy and management, such as approving purchases, and monitoring and setting payroll allocations;
  • Oversee or manage administrative academic matters, such as summer salary payments, visiting scholar and post-doctoral scholar appointments;
  • Handling sensitive personnel information in managing human resource activities for the unit, including processes related to recruitment, hiring, on-boarding, professional development, performance, and termination of exempt and non-exempt employees;
  • General administration, including oversight of data contracts and Institutional Review Board protocols, and development and management of MOU's and agreements.

Relatedly, the Associate Director will also undertake operational activities such as:
  • Operationalize and execute initiatives and priorities of the Faculty Director, including development and management of research projects;
  • Working as a part of the larger Center team with other administrative support staff to ensure that the Center operates smoothly, including running bi-weekly administrative team meetings and presenting in bi-weekly research team meetings; and, tracking action items from internal staff and research meetings to completion,
  • In coordination with Executive Director, improve and establish overall CEHD operational and tactical planning, and execute and distill CEHD business needs, best practices and strategic plan to staff and researchers;
  • Support the Executive Director and Faculty Director in a range of longer-term, high profile projects, including fundraising, research partnerships, and international collaborations;
  • Aid in program development and execution (workshops, visitors, strategic initiatives), coordination with internal and external partners (foundations, research partners, subcontractors, consultants, other Centers on campus, and related professional associations and community groups), and general support of Center activities (events oversight, meeting coordination, calendar management).

This job description is not intended to be inclusive of all job duties. Additional duties may be assigned.

  • Strong interpersonal and communications skills characterized by the ability to listen, to speak and to write well required.
  • High attention to detail and follow-up, and excellent organizational skills required.
  • Ability to manage confidential information with discretion and tact required.
  • Ability to maintain calm and courteous demeanor and to work productively despite heavy workload, competing priorities, complex problems, and tight deadlines required.
  • Considerable skill in working both independently and as a team member required.
  • Ability to take initiative and organize and complete projects with minimal supervision required.
  • Ability to use appropriate resources to resolve an issue required.
  • Ability to synthesize a large volume of information, and assess implications and situational dynamics, and present to Center leadership with a recommended course of action, to support decision making, required.
  • Ability to work collegially and collaboratively in a team setting required.
  • An exceptional work ethic and track record of personal initiative required.
  • Flexibility and adaptability in an emerging and changing environment required.
  • Willingness and ability to travel to campus and/or non-campus locations (including internationally) for Center business required.
  • Willingness and ability to work some evenings and weekends, sometimes with short notice, required.
  • Demonstrated skill and knowledge of administrative processes of the University required.

Additional Requirements

Education, Experience, and Certifications:

  • Bachelor's degree plus a minimum of five years progressively responsible administrative experience required.

  • Experience working successfully in a stressful environment, including resolving conflicts required.
  • Experience in a fast paced environment with demonstrated organization and coordination skills required.
  • Experience in higher education or nonprofit administration required.
  • A minimum of three years leading and managing projects preferred.
  • A minimum of one year of experience working with senior leadership preferred.
  • Collegiate coursework and/or degree relevant to Center's research preferred.
  • Experience managing academic research programming, particularly in the field of Economics, preferred.
  • Experience with development/fundraising preferred.
  • Experience supervising administrative staff preferred.

Technical Knowledge or Skills:
  • Advanced knowledge of word processing and productivity systems including: Google Suite (Calendar, Chrome, Drive, Gmail), Microsoft Office Suite (Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Project, Word), etc. required.
  • Demonstrated skill with software programs used at the University, including ACCTS, Ariadne, AURA, Business Objects, BuySite, CBORD, GEMS, Griffin, e-Payment, TAG, UCAT, UChicago Box, UChicago Time, Workday, etc. with deep understanding of how these systems interact preferred.
  • Basic knowledge of graphic design and editing software, Adobe Creative Suite (Dreamweaver, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, Photoshop), preferred.
  • Strong analytical skills and proficiency in data manipulation to produce reports, dashboards, presentations, and analytics preferred.
  • Understanding of the University of Chicago, its history, organization and modus operandi preferred.

Required Documents:
  • Resume
  • Cover Letter

(NOTE: When applying, all required documents MUST be uploaded under the Resume/CV section of the application.)

Benefit Eligibility

Pay Frequency

Pay Range
Depends on Qualification

Scheduled Weekly Hours


Job is Exempt?

Drug Test Required?

Does this position require incumbent to operate a vehicle on the job?

Health Screen Required?

Posting Date

Remove from Posting On or Before

Posting Statement:

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

The University of Chicago's Annual Security & Fire Safety Report (Report) provides information about University offices and programs that provide safety support, crime and fire statistics, emergency response and communications plans, and other policies and information. The Report can be accessed online at: Paper copies of the Report are available, upon request, from the University of Chicago Police Department, 850 E. 61st Street, Chicago, IL 60637.

Full time

About Us
The University of Chicago is an urban research university that has driven new ways of thinking since 1890. Our commitment to free and open inquiry draws inspired scholars to our global campuses, where ideas are born that challenge and change the world.

We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of original ideas. Students in the College develop critical, analytic, and writing skills in our rigorous, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars, and become the next generation of leaders in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.

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Job No:
Posted: 3/10/2018
Application Due: 3/17/2018
Work Type: