Head of Operations
The Alicante ELLIS Unit Foundation is a newly created nonprofit private foundation headquartered in Alicante, Spain, devoted to scientific research on human-centric Artificial Intelligence. Hence, its name “The Institute for Human(ity) Centric AI” (IHCAI). It is part of the network of 30 ELLIS units.
This is an exciting time to join the IHCAI as it is in its early days and the head of operations will have the opportunity to have significant impact in defining IHCAI’s culture and making it grow. This is a position reporting to the Foundation’s Director.
- As a member of the Foundation’s operating team, serve as a strategic thought partner alongside the Foundation’s Director and its Board of Trustees in the development and execution of all external and internal organizational priorities.
- Develop, lead, and sustain a long-term operating model that ensures that the ELLIS Unit Alicante Foundation has the best people, systems, processes, culture, and insights to deliver on its goals.
- Serve as a key partner in designing and executing a strong governance model for the Foundation.
Talent, Culture & Organizational Effectiveness
- Manage the HR function with the HR Director to optimize hiring, onboarding, HR compliance, and performance management. Embrace and operationalize the Foundation’s commitment to diversity.
Finance & Operations (FOPS)
Responsible for the activities in the areas:
- Finance, accounting, banking, auditing, and budgeting activities
- Governance, purchasing, contracting and risk management
Maintain excellent relationships with key partners, including the legal counsel, auditor, the accountants, and the public and private funders’ liaison teams.
Design and ensure strong internal controls, financial processes, and effective procedures in accordance with best practices in financial management for non-profit foundations.
Design and ensure a rigorous budget process, timely reporting during the year and an efficient year-end closing, annual audit, tax processes and funding justification procedures.
Design and implement purchasing strategy and processes, including public tender processes
Identify funding opportunities and negotiate contracts with public and private funding agents.
- Design and provide oversight of administrative, procurement and operational functions.
- Lead the internal non-scientific functions of the foundation: talent, culture; finance and operations; and performance planning & management.
- Manage, develop, and support a team of internal and external reports related to administrative tasks, finance, accounting, HR, Operations and IT and business development.
- Work closely with the Foundation’s director, head of legal, and board.
IT Infrastructure Oversight
- Evaluate, identify and propose IT systems to effectively fulfill the different functions in the Foundation: HR, purchasing, travel, expense reporting, tender processes, etc…
- Ensure that IT infrastructure is aligned with organizational and staffing needs, including working closely with external IT managed services provider to strategize and implement IT solutions.
- Supervise IT staff (internal or external), as needed.
- Working closely with legal to oversee contracts, MOUs, and other legal documents and agreements.
- Ensure that the Foundation’s operations are in full compliance with the necessary laws and regulations.
- Develop and implement internal controls and ensure that the audits are performed in a timely and rigorous manner.
Skills and Characteristics
- Deep commitment to the ELLIS and the ELLIS Unit Alicante Foundation’s mission and core values.
- Strong strategic thinking, analytical, and creative problem-solving skills.
- Excellent verbal, presentation, written and interpersonal communication skills.
- Ability to build strong relationships across diverse groups of internal and external stakeholders, and to facilitate consensus.
- Capacity to work as part of a collaborative and entrepreneurial team within a dynamic and growing organization.
- Excellent judgement, impeccable ethics, tact and diplomacy.
- Exceptional capacity for managing people and building strong organizational and team cultures. Relentless about continually setting and achieving high standards of performance while holding yourself, team, and the organization accountable.
- Ability to plan for, implement and facilitate change management around systems and processes to help the ELLIS Unit Alicante Foundation scale with success.
- Extensive experience in project management, design thinking and state-of-the-art management techniques.
Educational Background and Work Experience
- Bachelor’s degree required; MBA or Master’s degree strongly preferred, ideally with experience working in a field related to technology, science/research management.
- 10+ years of professional experience, including management and team leadership, business development, program planning, contract negotiations including public funding contracts; experience in the technology and/or research sector and in managing foundations is helpful, but we are open to candidates from other sectors who have deep passion for our work.
- Minimum 5 years of leadership experience in a supervisory role, with a depth of experience in managing teams and the success of people reporting to you.
- Bilingual English-Spanish.
WORKING AT THE ELLIS UNIT ALICANTE FOUNDATION
We are focused on hiring and developing great people, giving them autonomy, and maintaining high expectations to help team members grow. Our core values are:
- We strive for excellence and pursue our mission with passion.
- We embrace calculated risks and new approaches. We have an entrepreneurial spirit that welcomes innovation, diversity of ideas, and out-of-the-box thinking.
- We are truthful, fair, and trustworthy in all aspects of our work. We hold ourselves and our partners to the highest ethical standards. We trust you will too.
- We understand that our ultimate success depends on that of our partners and funding agencies. Your humility will be key to building trusted and authentic relationships.
- We value each of our team members as individuals but believe that we achieve the greatest results by working together. We hope having fun at work is important to you and that you are a team player.
Compensation is commensurate with experience and education. The annual target salary range will be competitive and will depend on seniority and experience.
The ELLIS Unit Alicante Foundation offers an attractive working environment in Alicante, a Mediterranean city with mild year-long weather and outstanding quality of life. The Candidates must have permanent authorization to work in Spain.
The Alicante ELLIS Unit Foundation seeks candidates who can start by October 1st, 2021, with the possibility of starting earlier.
To apply, please fill our your application here