UPP - Senior Operations Director



APRIL 2021



Introduction to University Partnerships Programme


Our Partnerships


The Student Experience


The role of Senior Operations Director


Job description and person specification


Benefits of working at UPP


Further Information and Application Process




We are the UK’s leading provider of on-campus residential and academic accommodation infrastructure. We have over 36,000 rooms in operation or under construction through long-term, bespoke partnerships with 15 leading UK universities. With approximately 1000 employees, since 1998 UPP has invested well over £3bn in the UK higher education sector and provided homes to over 400,000 students. Our unique, long-term partnership approach enables our university partners to develop their estates whilst reinvesting in their core services of teaching and research. We design, build, finance and operate (DBFO) new, on-campus residential and academic infrastructure, and complete estate transfers of existing accommodation, for concession periods ranging from 40 years to 125 years. By providing high-quality and affordable accommodation on campus we aim to deliver the very best student experience in partnership with universities.

University of London

Our Vision

To be the leading infrastructure and services partner to UK universities by delivering next-generation campuses. To deliver on this ambitious vision we have developed a strategy focused on preserving and growing the value of our business through partnership, innovation and delivery. 1. Preserve the value of our business through active asset/investment management, maintaining a compliant estate and enhanced proactive marketing 2. Grow the value of our business by expanding our offer and working with leading UK universities 3. Partner more actively with universities through strategic relationship management 4. Innovate to deliver next generation products and services, driven by a new Innovation and Enterprise hub 5. Deliver for our partners by empowering our teams to provide an exemplary service, building the capability of our people, technology and processes, and driving a performance culture through strong leadership



Student Experience

Great space and services with student experience built in.

Our partnerships enhance the support and connection we have with the students who make their home with us. We currently manage the needs of more than 35,000 students every term and this means we never stop learning and we share our experience with our partners. We also know that every university is as unique as the thousands of students it serves and this ensures that we are never complacent, and never take a one size fits all view.

Listening, responding, adapting

Students can be demanding, and their needs constantly evolve. Independent qualitative and quantitative research helps us understand the evolving needs of students, and face to face focus groups and regular surveys with our residents enable us to check and adapt our approach quickly. As specialists, the quality of our teams and their in- depth understanding of the unique environment and the people for whom we provide services enables us to support universities, understand their aims and their strategy and together deliver tangible improvements to the student experience. Our design teams work to understand how students want to use space, and how they interact with each other, leading to seemingly small improvements to the specification of a bedroom, or major changes that impact on construction or technology. At UPP we aim to deliver great places to live, with student experience literally built in.

Transforming the Campus Experience

At UPP we want to reinvent the way students live and learn at university by transforming the campus experience. Our new and clearly defined strategy for growth is based on our overarching mission to develop long- term partnerships, supporting universities in improving the quality of their physical infrastructure and services to students. In aligning the interests of both parties, our unique approach provides security in the delivery of revenues and, in turn, expected returns to investors. Our strategy seeks to protect and grow the value of our existing business, innovate our partnerships, and deliver the very best experiences to our student residents. Our strategy will: • Grow the number of partnerships we have with selected universities • Expand and innovate our next-generation product offer to universities • Enhance our experiential offer for our partners and their students • Empower our teams to deliver by building capability • Transform and optimise our Portfolio through strategic asset management • Drive a proactive and multi-channel approach to business origination • Develop an energetic performance culture with leadership at its heart • Embrace technology in our products and services and to improve our processes • Expand our complementary facilities management strategy

Our University Partners

Imperial College London

1,172 Rooms / FM Services

Lancaster University

4,347 Rooms / Eco-Residences / FM services 2,038 Rooms / Eco-Residences / FM Services

Leeds Beckett University Loughborough University Nottingham Trent University Oxford Brookes University

1,310 Rooms / FM Services

4,402 Rooms / Academic / Retail / FM Services

771 Rooms / FM Services

Plymouth University University of Exeter University of Kent

1,764 Rooms / Academic / FM Services 3,555 Rooms / Academic / FM Services

1,840 Rooms / Eco-Residences / Academic / FM Services

University of Nottingham University of Reading

2,223 Rooms / FM Services

4,971 Rooms / Accommodation Office / FM Services

University of York

1,043 Rooms / FM Services 1,711 Rooms / FM Services

University of London University of Hull Swansea University

1,750 Rooms

2,472 Rooms / FM Services

Our Business Units

UPP comprises three business units;

• Asset Management Responsible for the long-term asset management of the Portfolio

• Residential Services Delivering facilities management services to our residences

• Commercial Designing, funding and development of new assets, as well as delivering strategic programmes

Each business unit, and the wider Group, is supported by a range of corporate services


Reporting to the Managing Director – Residential Services, the Senior Operations Director will take full responsibility for the operational management of the London and South East region as well deputising for the Managing Director across UPP’s broader national portfolio of 36,000 bedspaces. This role will lead the overall management of RS delivered services to the University student residences and academic estate across the region. They will lead the regional site teams to deliver the highest standards of service to enhance the student experience, in support of the UPP corporate strategy. Other key accountabilities will be to lead on the identification and implementation of initiatives to continually drive performance improvement, operational efficiency and effectiveness across the RS business unit and the delivery of financial performance objectives for the region and wider national portfolio. We are seeking an individual with a proven experience at a senior and influential level with responsibility for leading customer-focused operational facilities services across a large-scale, multi-site property portfolio. You will have a demonstrable evidence of experience and track record in driving continuous improvement to deliver customer satisfaction, business growth and financial benefits across a large- scale, operational function. Experience of working across the full asset development, construction, operations life-cycle and on design, build, finance, operate models would be advantageous. The role calls for an individual who has exceptional leadership and communication skills, and that has a track record of leading and inspiring customer-focused in-house teams ranging from mid-senior level managers through to operational service delivery staff. The Role of Senior Operations Director



Job Description

Job Title

Senior Operations Director

Reports To

Managing Director


London/South of England

Role & Responsibilities

Financial Management • Develop financial plans, annual budgets and oversee the financial performance of the site operations • Deliver the revenue, EBITDA and cash targets from the long-term financial plans and annual budgets • Identify revenue enhancing opportunities in order to maximise third party commercial income • Expand the range of FM services to both existing and new partners. • Responsible for translating the 3-year corporate strategy into deliverable improvements that support UPP’s strategic aims. • Deliver in-year targets and ensure achievement of associated KPIs. • Continuous improvement and business transformation • Identify, develop and implement cost efficiency plans across the region to ensure continuous transformation in ways of working and maximising efficiencies and effectiveness. • Identify service improvement programmes to deliver business and customer benefits • They will strive to build capability and strengthen leadership within the region • They will seek out ways to re-engineer business processes and leverage data and technology to deliver business benefits. • Deliver increased productivity, service delivery and cost transformation through identification and implementation of strategic and operational initiatives.

Contract Delivery • Formulate and initiate strategic initiatives as part of the UPP Senior Management Team • Deliver business plan objectives within set timescales. Instigate an annual work plan for the region, including all key activities, areas for improvement and performance metrics • Ensure compliance with Group strategy and policies and procedures. • Ensure the effective discharge of the contractual obligations within the Facilities Management Contracts and Management Services Agreements between RS and the individual SPVs. Be accountable for delivery of all contractual and statutory obligations in a timely, cost effective and efficient manner • Undertake regular contract/performance reviews to monitor delivery against key performance indicators. Monitor the quality of service delivery, deliver high levels of customer satisfaction and ensure continuous improvement of the service to customers • Identify best practice and share this across the business to drive continuous improvement of operational performance • Lead the operational aspects of the implementation of new projects. Ensuring that mobilisation activities are adequately planned, resourced and delivered to time. Ensure smooth transition between construction and operations prior to a new scheme becoming operational People Management • Provide clear leadership and management to teams, ensure appropriate communication is in place. • Ensure all sites comply with relevant HR policies & procedures • Lead, motivate and coach the operational teams to deliver the Company’s business strategy, setting measurable performance targets and ensuring they are achieved • Promote and ensure the implementation of the organisation’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion strategy across all spheres of operation to promote and champion an inclusive and supportive work environment • Regularly review performance and evaluate the effectiveness of the operational teams and ensure relevant development plans are in place to drive improved levels of performance and address any areas of underperformance. • Responsible for manpower planning and succession planning across the region • Ensure the region has active plans in place to enhance employee engagement and maintain Investors in People (IiP) Accreditation



Health, Safety, Environment and Quality • Take a leading role in promoting health, safety and environmental matters and operational risk management across the business • Manage risk and ensure compliance with legal, regulatory and internal procedural requirements. Ensure health & safety compliance and, in conjunction with the UPP company Health and Safety Department ensure that Health and Safety policies and procedures are adhered to • Promote a positive and learning culture for health, safety, environmental and quality with employee engagement and consultation at its core • Ensure all sites within the region are compliant to statutory and technical maintenance obligations; ensuring all systems, processes and policies are in place, complied with, monitored and recorded • Ensure all employees in the region are, appropriately and suitably trained in and aware of their HSE duties and responsibilities • Maintain accreditation standards across the region. Ensure the requirements, and remedial actions of audits and inspections, both internal and external audits (ISO 9001, ISO 1400 and OHSAS 18001) are met including Water Risk Assessments and Fire Risk Assessments • Drive improvements across regulatory requirements, health and safety and quality standards by using performance data, evidence, and relevant outcome measures, ensuring compliance with all internal controls. • Take the lead role in coordinating RS’s activities and compliance in respect of technical and statutory compliance. Represent RS on relevant committees and ensuring RS is positioned to respond to existing and new legislation relating to building safety, fire safety and all areas of statutory maintenance.

Client Liaison

• Take a leading role in partner engagement as well as liaison and performance monitoring. • Develop and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with University partners and other key stakeholders. • Provide senior liaison with the university client and student bodies (e.g. student union) over matters covering all aspects of the accommodation • Seek opportunities to expand the range of services to both existing and new partners in the region • Champion the delivery of excellence in student experience within the business. Devise, agree and deliver action plans to focus on service improvements

Service Delivery and Quality Control

• Provide all necessary reports to the ELT, Company Boards and Committees as required. Ensuring papers are to a high standard and always delivered on time • Manage the RS operations in line with the Company’s risk management process

Other • Be part of the management escalation procedure

• Take a leading role in selective UPP wide project and business improvement initiatives • Regularly deputise for the Managing Director at executive forums and committees

• Any other duties reasonably required in order to fulfil the role. • Regular UK travel will be required including some overnight stays

16 UNIVERSITY PARTNERSHIPS PROGRAMME Person Specification Attributes Essential criteria

Desirable Criteria PBSA and/or Higher Education sector Experience Experience of construction methodologies, techniques and specifications


Experience of operating at Senior Management/ Board level.

Proven track record in managing multi-site FM operations in Property, PFI, hospitality, accommodation or related discipline Ability and experience of inputting to investment decisions and representing shareholders, investors and partners

Leading and executing transformation – cost and service

Experience in change management and driving continuous improvement to deliver business and customer benefits

A demonstrable track-record of achieving business growth

Skills/ Ability/ Knowledge

Wide ranging knowledge of the FM Market and service innovation

Experience in business development/bidding large scale FM contracts Experience of successfully mobilising new transactions Knowledge of Computer Aided Facilities Management (CAFM) systems and how to use business intelligence to drive performance Understanding of the DBFO business model

Strong knowledge of FM contractual arrangements

Strong financial management and analytical skills

Thorough knowledge and understanding of health, safety and environmental practices

Knowledge and experience of technical and statutory obligations, particularly relating to fire safety and statutory maintenance

Strong interpersonal and relationship management skills

Strong presentation skills. Effective business case and report writing as well as presenting concepts and proposals to an executive audience


Essential criteria

Desirable Criteria

Education/ Qualification

Educated to degree level in a relevant discipline

Postgraduate and/or professional qualifications, e.g. RICS, Chartered Engineer status, IWFM (Qual)

Alternatively, able to cite a substantial amount of senior management experience in Facilities Management or in a related field with a demonstrably successful track record

Member of IWFM or other relevant professional organisation

Evidence of Continuing Professional Development

Health and Safety qualification e.g. IOSH Managing Safely, NEBOSH

Personal Qualities

Excellent leadership and interpersonal skills

Ability to communicate effectively from the Boardroom to the front-line.

A curious mind that seeks out innovation and emerging trends in FM service delivery

Business and commercially focussed, with a drive to seek innovative solutions A strong decision maker with an ability to manage in a dynamic environment

Resilient and with gravitas. An ability to manage through others to deliver successful outcomes



The benefits of working at UPP

In addition to a competitive basic salary level and industry leading annual bonus potential UPP offer a diverse range of employee benefits, including: • Salary exchange pension – matched contributions of 5% • Private Medical Insurance – single cover with the option to add dependants • Private Health Insurance (Group Income Protection) • Life Assurance x4 salary (x2 salary if opted out of pension scheme)

• 29 days annual leave, plus 8 days bank holiday • Holiday purchase option – up to 5 days (FTE) • Bonus Exchange • UPP Payroll Giving (Give as You Earn) • UPP Rewards (discount portal) • Employee Assistance Programme

This is an exciting time to join a commercially focused, high performing, customer and results oriented organisation that operates with energy, pace and passion. We strive to develop a highly-engaged, skilled and collaborative organisation that is diverse and has an embedded culture that promotes equality of opportunity. We offer the opportunity for flexible working and an inclusive environment for our people. We have an ongoing commitment to making UPP a great place to work for our teams, and as a reflection of this, the Company has been awarded Gold accreditation by Investors in People (IiP). This internationally recognised accreditation is the sign of a great employer and a great place to work with a clear commitment to sustained success through people.

Further information and application process

For a confidential discussion to learn more about the role and opportunity please contact the UPP’s appointed recruitment partners Michael Hewlett and Ben Duffill of The Management Recruitment Group.

Michael Hewlett T: 0203 962 9900 M: 07972 579 938 E: michael.hewlett@mrgpeople.co.uk Ben Duffill T: 0203 962 9900 M: 07976 125 010 E: ben.duffill@mrgpeople.co.uk

Applications should consist of a comprehensive CV and supporting cover letter. Applications should be sent to michael.hewlett@mrgpeople.co.uk and ben.duffill@mrgpeople.co.uk. The closing date for applications is Sunday 23rd May 2021.

All candidates are also requested to complete an Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form which will be available upon submission of your application. Privacy Notice: Please note that by submitting your details, you are accepting that MRG and UPP is a “data controller”. This means that we are responsible for deciding how we hold and use personal information about you. You will receive an ‘Applicant Privacy Notice’ if your application is progressed. This notice will make you aware of how and why your personal data will be used, namely for the purposes of recruitment, and how long it will usually be retained for.

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