Appointment of the Head of Employer Partnerships and Apprenticeships

Welcome

Thanks you for your interest in joining the University of East London (UEL) as Head of Employer Partnerships and Apprenticeships.

UEL is a careers-led university, dedicated to supporting our students to develop the skills, emotional intelligence and creativity needed to thrive in a constantly changing world. Our goal is to become the leading careers-focused, enterprising university in the UK, one which both prepares our students for the jobs of the future and provides the innovation to drive that future sustainably and inclusively.

Our recently launched Talent Gateway directorate works with employers, local authorities and academic partners to generate new commercial relationships including seeking opportunities to grow continuing professional development (CPD) income, apprenticeships and business support services.

We are now seeking to appoint our Head of Employer Partnerships and Apprenticeships who will be responsible for UEL’s employer and apprenticeships partnership management, identifying business opportunities to ensure sustainability and deliver a high-quality customer service for UEL’s external partners, both in the UK and internationally. The new Head will also deliver central support to Schools to grow their CPD activity; deliver and manage contracts established with external partners on behalf of the University; and ensure that the Business Centre is run and operates efficiently, supporting the commercialisation of student companies and providing a flow of investable companies to associated angel investors.

Our ideal candidate will have commercial expertise, a strong employer engagement track record, experience of business development and management of strategic contractual relationships and an understanding of higher and degree level apprenticeships and CPD provision. We are seeking to appoint someone with entrepreneurial skills, strong commercial acumen and a successful bid-writing record who can help the University to expand its range of commercial clients and deliver support to a broader range of customers. We offer a dynamic working environment with the opportunity to develop University wide arrangements and deliver ‘deals’ with global companies to increase UEL’s employer engagement portfolio.

You can find out more about our University and the role on this website and our advising consultants at Anderson Quigley would be delighted to discuss the role with you – their details can also be found on this site.

I do hope you will express an interest in joining us and being part of our exciting new Talent Gateway team.

Dr Gulnara Stover
Director, The Talent Gateway

About us

The University of East London is a vibrant and diverse university located in Stratford and Docklands. Our goal is to become the leading careers-focused, enterprising university in the UK, one which both prepares our students for the jobs of the future and provides the innovation to drive that future sustainably and inclusively.

The University has been pioneering futures since 1898: from the 2nd Industrial Revolution through to where we are now, the 4th. We work with global organisations to make our courses entrepreneurial, creative and inspirational. Wherever our students want to work – in business, technology, teaching, arts, media, science, sport or the public sector – they will have the skills necessary to adapt to the world of tomorrow, and to be the leaders and pioneers of today.

More and more, employers are seeking workers who possess skills such as emotional intelligence and creativity, the ability to think critically and undertake complex problem solving. That’s why we’ve put these skills at the heart of every one of our degrees, counting towards students’ final qualification.

This ambition is captured in the four strategic objectives of Vision 2028:

  • Future Graduate: to increase participation, engagement, progression and successful completion of life-changing, life-long education.
  • Future Professional: to address industry and community skills gaps, increasing access to and acceleration of graduate-level employment.
  • Future Life: to increase the economic, social and cultural impact of our education, applied research and enterprise activity to the communities we serve.
  • Sustainability: to increase financial, physical, digital, environmental and human resilience, maximising value, reducing waste and incentivising behaviour.

Key Information

  • UEL has campuses in Stratford and Docklands, within easy access of central London.
  • UEL has over 17,000 under-graduate and post-graduate students from over 130 different countries studying on UEL awarded programmes.
  • UEL has an annual turnover of over £130 million.
  • UEL has 1,300 staff.
  • UEL is centred on six schools – the School of Health, Sports and Biosciences; School of Business and Law; School of Psychology; School of Architecture; Computer Science and Engineering; School of Arts and Creative Industries and the Cass School of Education and Communities.

About The Talent Gateway

A central feature of the Careers 1st approach established in Vision 2028, the primary function of The Talent Gateway is to provide the central commercial externally focused professional business development and key account management function for the University.

Working alongside the Schools, the unit will directly engage with employers, local authorities and academic partners to generate new income and broader commercial engagement opportunities. This includes seeking opportunities to grow continuing professional development income, apprenticeships, internships and placement and other forms of commercial income as well as income and wider educational and reputational benefits from growing our academic partnerships in the UK and globally (physically and online) including validation, franchise, articulation and UEL global experiences.

As well as supporting income generation and diversification, The Talent Gateway will provide critical professional strategic key account management of our extensive and growing portfolio of employer and academic partnerships.

Employer Partnerships will be split into several distinct functional areas:

Business Centre – the existing commercial company running its operations via Knowledge Dock Ltd. continues to be an attractive proposition for the University engaging in support for student, faculty, alumni and local community businesses.  In addition to generating income in its own right from lettings, the Business Centre will focus increasingly on supporting the commercialisation of student companies, providing a flow of investable companies to associated angel investors.

In the next few months the nature of Business Centre operations will undergo a substantial change and the entire building will be transformed into the Royal Docks Centre for Sustainable Communities, Innovation and Enterprise (SCIE). Our vision for SCIE is to create a transformative engagement and workspace which delivers good growth benefits to residents, communities and businesses across the Royal Docks and Newham. The SCIE Centre will be a green, Industry 4.0 powerhouse facility and is central to achieving our Vision 2028 strategy: serving the needs of East London through industry-relevant research, supporting community health, driving collaborative innovation and providing professional skills and services for local people. A thriving, inclusive hub, SCIE’s impact will be magnified through partnership working with community groups, policy leads and global industrial partners.

Over a 12-month project development timeline, our plan is to repurpose UEL’s currently under-utilised Knowledge Dock building and structure the SCIE Centre as three unique, interconnected hubs to address the needs of specific beneficiaries; those will include Career Zones, Eco-Innovation Living Laboratory (EILL) and Sustainable Enterprise Centre (SEC).

  • Eco-Innovation Living Laboratory: supporting alumni, start-ups, SMEs and international businesses, EILL will house the flag-ship Sustainability Research Institute, the Institute for Digital Innovation and the Institute for Connected Communities. Entrepreneurs will have access to renowned academic expertise; prototyping facilities in a new ‘maker space’; a digital literacy lab to mitigate online harm and cyber-crime, and a test-bed data centre for incubating digital health and sustainability solutions.
  • Sustainable Enterprise Centre and joint Sino/UK Centre for Design, Creativity and Innovation: providing health, sustainability and ‘tech-for-good’ start-ups and SMEs with serviced offices, co-working space, curated support programmes and light industrial workshops, the SEC will accelerate green growth and attract new businesses and jobs to the Royal Docks.
  • UEL Career Zones – versatile physical and digital space that brings together students, staff and world-leading companies to co-create, experiment and learn together. They support both local and global talent and innovation solutions. Each Career Zone is being developed in collaboration with a lead industry partner to reflect the skills and competency needs, work experience and employment opportunities, applied research and development agendas, lifelong up- and re-skilling requests, and employer/start-up convening requirements of that particular industry sector. Career Zones will include a wellness centre and/or clinic, maker spaces, dedicated employment agencies, as well as associated drama studios, careers service functions, events team, etc.

Continuing Professional Development – the new unit will provide central support for Schools to grow the provision of CPD activity across the University including the management of any contracts established with external partners to manage, promote and deliver CPD on behalf of the University.

Business development – the new unit will support Schools in the development of new commercial income from engagement with business, charities and local authorities to achieve improved employment outcomes, growth and diversification of the academic portfolio and improved KEF outcomes. This will include new apprenticeships, placements, internships and other commercial, income generating activity. The function will be outsourced.

Apprenticeships and Employer Engagement – the new unit will bring together a team of professional key account managers to look after existing and future University commercial partnerships and apprenticeship employers (e.g. Babcock, AWS, Siemens, Accenture, Barclays, etc.), as well as managing commercially focused engagement with local authorities.

Please click here to view The Talent Gateway structure chart.

The role

Head of Employer Partnerships and Apprenticeships

Job reference:
AQ1019

School/Service: The Talent Gateway
Responsible to: Director of The Talent Gateway
Responsible for: Employer Partnerships team
Liaison with: University Management Team, Heads of Departments, Professional Services staff, Directors of Careers & Enterprise, Academic staff involved in Degree and Higher Apprenticeship activities, Quality Assurance and Enhancement, Academic Registry, Finance, Strategic Planning, Employers, local authorities, and other relevant external stakeholders.

Job purpose

This is a strategic partnership development role to shape, inform and lead UEL’s employer partnerships and apprenticeships portfolio. The role will lead on employer partnerships and apprenticeships business development and key account management, being fully responsible for the University’s strategic employer partnerships accounts, which will include their direct day-to-day management in addition to overall responsibility for oversight of all UEL employer partnerships. The post holder will work closely with senior management, academics, UEL employer and apprenticeships partners, globally and in the UK, to lead and support on outstanding operational activity to deliver the University’s ambitious targets set out in the Vision 2028 corporate strategy.

The post holder will be responsible for UEL’s employer and apprenticeships partnership management, identifying business opportunities to ensure sustainability and deliver a high-quality customer service for UEL’s external partners, both in the UK and abroad; ensuring efficient central support for Schools to grow their CPD activity: management of any contracts established with external partners to promote and deliver CPD on behalf of the University; ensuring that the Business Centre is run and operates efficiently, supporting the commercialisation of student companies, providing a flow of investable companies to associated angel investors.

The post holder will be responsible for the development and management of physical Career Zones across the University campuses. Each Career Zone will be developed in collaboration with a lead industry partner to reflect the skills and competency needs, work experience and employment opportunities, applied research and development agendas, lifelong up- and re-skilling requests, and employer/start-up convening requirements of that particular industry sector.

The post holder will be responsible for developing a successful operating model through managing the Employer Partnerships division of The Talent Gateway and delivering consistency and excellence in all aspects of the service. The post holder will have an inclusive, determined and inspirational approach to leadership, encouraging ideas, initiative and innovation in others, whilst establishing a high-performance culture based on continuous improvement.

Main duties and responsibilities

  • Deliver KPIs set out for the Employer Partnerships unit under the Careers and Enterprise portfolio.
  • Identify, lead and develop effective partnerships with relevant external stakeholders (e.g. industry and apprenticeships employers) to generate income and establish long-term sustainable partnerships to maximise revenue generation; develop University wide arrangements and deliver ‘deals’ with global companies to increase UEL’s employer engagement portfolio.
  • Development and management of the University physical Career Zones, securing employer partnerships and operationalising them. This work will include but won’t be limited to supporting residents, employers, students and investors with curated clinics, training, mentoring and business start-up advice, etc.
  • Ensure consistently stable and efficient communication and engagement with UEL existing and new strategic partners and apprenticeships employers; delivering against the formal contracts agreed between the University and partners.
  • Agree (and ensure the implementation) of service level agreements for operation of partnerships: 2-day turnaround on all queries; 50% reduction in registered complaints; and partnership feedback monitoring through conducting regular questionnaires on service delivery.
  • Lead on identifying the risks to the employer partnerships portfolio, provide expertise and recommend solutions to internal/external issues to ensure high quality account management and experience of existing partners.
  • Develop and maintain a strong performance management framework for staff, ensuring professional development is aligned to revenue generation, target delivery, business performance and risk management.
  • Facilitate regular activities to bring employer partners closer together (e.g. organise a series of events during the National Apprenticeships week).
  • Provide inspirational leadership and manage the teams responsible for delivering higher/ degree apprenticeships, employer engagement plans, Business Centre and external teams responsible for promoting and delivering CPD activity on behalf of UEL and the business development team.
  • Support the University response to the Knowledge Exchange Framework.
  • Attend relevant University management meetings to represent the Employer Partnerships team.
  • Represent the University externally, identifying sector best practice and ensuring UEL’s employer engagement, CPD and apprenticeships provision is reviewed and strengthened by regular benchmarking.
  • To work in accordance with relevant UEL policies, including Equal Opportunity, Health & Safety, Equality & Diversity and others.

Apprenticeships

  • Continuously improve and increase apprenticeships income in accordance with set KPIs for each year (expected growth in number of apprentices at minimum 20% per year).
  • Lead on institutional readiness to ensure compliance with government regulations (ESFA, Ofsted, etc.); develop and implement a strategy and business plan to grow apprenticeships provision across UEL.
  • Work in collaboration with key internal stakeholders to provide guidance and establish robust workflows for delivering high quality student experience of students on UEL apprenticeship programmes.

Business Centre

  • Oversee and help operationalise the outlined above transformation of the current Business Centre operations and the entire building into the Royal Docks Centre for Sustainable Communities, Innovation and Enterprise (SCIE).
  • Work closely with the Business Centre manager to ensure a continuous increase in the number of students undertaking internships/placements with business centre ‘tenants’ (minimum expectation is 30 per year).
  • Increase the Business Centre’s contribution to Knowledge Dock Ltd. profit by a minimum of 10% per annum through increasing occupancy and income.
  • Facilitate at least one collaborative research project per year between a Business centre tenant and the University.
  • Develop an improved offer to businesses and develop effective marketing activity in order to achieve a minimum of 90% occupancy of the Business Centre across the financial year.

Business Development

  • Continuously improve and increase Business Development income by facilitating engagement and acting as a ‘contract manager’ for new consultancy projects, research contracts, KTPs, etc. (minimal expectation is approx. 30% annual increase in number of employers actively engaged with UEL and number of consultancy and research contracts).
  • Increase contribution to UEL by marketing University facilities, catering, etc. to be used for various external events and conferences.

Continuous Professional Development

  • Significantly grow the provision of CPD activity across the University including management of any contracts established with external partners to manage, promote and deliver CPD on behalf of the University.
  • Facilitate the above-mentioned growth by expansion of UEL CPD courses portfolio (both accredited and non-accredited) and numbers of CPD courses attendees.
  • To carry out any other duties and activities appropriate to the role, which contribute to and enhance the image and efficiency of the Employer Partnerships unit and The Talent Gateway as a whole.

 

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Education, qualifications and achievements

  • A good first degree and strong evidence of background in business development, contract management and employer engagement.
  • Postgraduate or Professional qualification (desirable).

Knowledge and experience

  • Excellent leadership skills with the ability to lead a high-quality and diverse team, adopting a collaborative style to deliver the University’s vision.
  • Demonstrable success and impact from effectively leading, managing and motivating staff, securing individual and collective engagement and action.
  • Strong track record of effective engagement and influence with a wide range of stakeholders within the UK and internationally.
  • Budget management experience.
  • Experience of working with employers on skills projects, external stakeholders and/or in a target driven client-facing role.
  • Experience of successful bid-writing.
  • Experience of managing higher and degree level apprenticeships and CPD provision within a UK HE/FE institution.
  • Experience of managing successful change and/or project management (desirable).
  • Previous relevant experience of working in a UK HE/FE institution (desirable).

Skills and abilities

  • Highly organised with an ability to manage multiple projects in a deadline intensive environment.
  • A clear understanding of the higher education sector and the business development opportunities within it, with experience of delivering targets through external partnership building.
  • Proven high level ability to be creative, innovative and incisive, ensuring an efficient approach to working practices.
  • High level analytical skills; the ability to interpret an evidence base and make management decisions based on that evidence.
  • Evidence of high-level communication skills (written, presentation and verbal).
  • Capacity and willingness to maintain and grow a culture which is innovative and inclusive.
  • Excellent inter-personal skills and the ability to work with a wide range of people.

Personal attributes/ qualities

  • Commitment to and understanding of equal opportunities issues within a diverse and multicultural environment.
  • Commitment to building and ensuring a good reputation for UEL in all activities related to Employer Partnerships.
  • A self-starter who can initiate improvements and continual change to develop UELs reputation and employer partnership activities.
  • Willingness to work flexibly and travel, as directed.

Terms of appointment

Benefits at UELPS Ltd
At UEL Professional Services Ltd we are committed to promoting the values of equality, inclusivity and diversity throughout our community of staff and the students that we serve. In keeping with this, we have developed a wide range of benefits making UEL Professional Services Ltd an attractive place to work. These include family-friendly policies, access to nursery facilities, competitive salary and pension arrangements, a commitment to staff development and a host of other benefits.

Salary
The salary range for this role is £64,599 – £72,226.

Annual leave
This role is entitled to 30 days’ annual leave plus public holidays.

Pension schemes
UEL Professional Services Ltd offers a generous defined contribution scheme, the UEL Retirement and Savings Plan, which employees automatically join on commencing employment (unless they choose to opt out). The Plan offers a 10% employer contribution without employee contribution, matching employee contributions on a ratio of 1.5 : 1 up to a maximum additional employer contribution of 6%, and generous ill health salary protection and death in service benefits.

Family-friendly policies
For staff with children between the ages of two and six years, there is a state-of-the-art nursery at Docklands, while at Stratford we can offer places at local, privately-run nurseries. We have a flexible working policy and generous maternity, adoption and parental leave policies.

Travel
The University campuses offer easy access to public transport and are just 30 minutes from Central London. The Stratford campus is just a few minutes’ walk from Stratford Station, a major transport hub. Docklands Campus has its own Docklands Light Railway Station, Cyprus. In addition, interest-free season-ticket loans and bicycle loans are offered to all staff, and there is also car parking available subject to application for a parking permit.

Staff development
We are strongly committed to developing the skills and careers of all our staff. Annual staff development reviews and personal action plans are designed to enable staff to develop their careers, and are supported by an extensive range of courses and events to enhance management, teaching and learning, IT and personal development skills. We also encourage our staff to obtain a degree or higher level qualification on one of our programmes by part-time study, with fees met by UEL Professional Services Ltd.

Other benefits include:

  • Eye care vouchers
  • Occupational health service
  • Prayer rooms
  • Wide range of catering facilities
  • Salary sacrifice scheme – professional subscriptions, bicycle loans, childcare vouchers

All of the terms and conditions of service and the employment policies are on the UEL website, please visit.

How to apply

Anderson Quigley is acting as an employment advisor to the University of East London. An executive search process is being carried out by Anderson Quigley in addition to the public advertisement.

Should you wish to discuss the role in strict confidence, please contact our advising consultants at Anderson Quigley: Elyse Turner-Pearce on +44(0)7808 648 559, or Elliott Rae on +44 (0)7584 078 534.

The closing date for applications is noon on Friday 4th December 2020.

Applications should consist of:

  • A full CV including your educational and professional qualifications, full employment history, latest remuneration, details of relevant achievements and contact details.
  • A covering letter stating how you meet the criteria in the Person Specification and outlining your motivation for applying for this role. Your covering letter should be a maximum of two sides of A4.
  • Details of two referees, though please note that we will not approach your referees without your prior consent and only should you be shortlisted.
  • Please follow the link to complete an Equal Opportunity Monitoring Form.

Completed applications should be uploaded at www.andersonquigley.com/candidates using the reference AQ1019.

Timetable

Closing date: Friday 4th December 2020
Longlisting: Wednesday 9th December 2020
Preliminary Interviews with AQ: w/c 14th December 2020
Shortlisting: Monday 4th January 2021
Informal conversations with UEL: w/c 11th January 2021
Final Panel Interviews: Thursday 21st January 2021 (TBC)