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  • 4 weeks ago

jobs description

Job Title Project Manager

Role reports to: Programme Manager

Direct/indirect reports: None

Location: Dubai, hybrid work arrangement

Contract duration: 2 years contract with the possibility of extension

Department: Partnership for Education

Open to: Residents of UAE with the legal right to work, visa transfers are possible

DRS is looking for a Project Manager on behalf of the leading academic publisher and assessment organization to manage the successful delivery of education reform projects with governments and organizations around the world, managing resources and ensuring that deliverables are completed to quality, cost, and time standards as specified in the contract, aiming to manage, meet and exceed customer expectations throughout the project lifecycle. Projects are often externally funded and require significant stakeholder management at a senior level, including with education ministers and other executive staff within global Ministries of Education.


Support project development where required
• Provide project management structure and approach when putting together project plans and costings for proposals assigned by the Portfolio Development Manager.
• Provide Business Development (BD) and the Portfolio Development Manager any insight into customers or regions, including lessons learned, potential risks and mitigation strategies.
• Attend technical solution proposal kick-off meetings and workshops as needed.
• Produce high-level project plans and share them with technical teams for review and agreement.
• Attend technical review meetings to discuss feedback and make necessary amendments to high-level project plans.
• Agree on costing templates and approach with the Portfolio Development Manager and technical team colleagues.
• Produce costings to share with technical teams for review making necessary amendments as needed.
• Share proposed costings and project plans with the Portfolio Development Manager for QA and sign-off.
• Work with the Supplier Manager to obtain and quality-assure quotes from suppliers.
• Assist Business Development in preparing bids for internal approval.
• Following commercial sign-off of the price, prepare a table to meet client requirements for inclusion in the commercial proposal.
• Support Business Development during negotiation phases of bids as required.
• Liaise closely with the BD team and the Portfolio Development Manager to stay informed on the progress of proposals submitted.
• Ensure that the necessary project information is completed and present in the project transition checklist for all proposals submitted.
• Start project transition into the live contracts portfolio once the contract is won.
• Chair the project transition meeting to ensure effective handover of the project to the Project Manager assigned to live delivery of the contract, using the project transition checklist to do so. Manage project assignments at the discretion of the Portfolio Contracts Manager
• Manage own workload and capacity effectively to ensure availability for live projects at the discretion of the Portfolio Contracts Manager.
• Liaise closely with the Portfolio Contracts Manager on upcoming project workload and capacity to help with the process of assigning projects to project managers to ensure the successful delivery of the portfolio.

Manage contracts, scope, and deliverables
• Monitor and actively manage project scope, containing scope creep and negotiating variations as required.
• Manage the completion and effective handover of deliverables as defined in the contract.
• Manage the issuing and control of contractual documentation (e.g., the contract, variations, completion certificates, or acts of rendered services) and ensure timely completion of any contract support activities.

Plan the project and monitor and report delivery performance
• Contribute as needed to contract or bid development to advise on deliverability and high-level planning.
• Produce robust, achievable plans for the projects and ensure the commitment of all engaged parties to achieve them.
• Monitor progress against plan and take corrective action and/or escalate to ensure plans are delivered.
• Ensure timely, transparent reporting is provided to inform on all aspects of project performance and risks to meet the needs of the project steering group, client, and senior management team.
• Lead and chair project working groups and meetings.

Establish effective project governance and project organization
• Set up and facilitate both internal governance (steering group) and external (with the client) to support effective decision-making and proper use of escalation routes.
• Ensure clarity of project roles and responsibilities.

Operate robust project controls
• Create and monitor project schedules.
• Ensure controls are operated in accordance with good project practice and project management methodology to ensure that delivery meets customer requirements.
• Set and manage budgets (ensuring budgets are achieved), forecasts, control expenditure, contingencies, and timely processing of purchase orders and invoices.
• Establish and operate controls for managing quality, working with technical SMEs to manage the acceptance of all deliverables to ensure they achieve the specified standards.
• Actively manage and report project risks throughout the project lifecycle. Promote the focus of the project team to address these risks, ensuring mitigation and contingency arrangements are defined and provisioned for and escalating to the Programme Manager, Portfolio Manager, or Project Sponsor as required.
• Actively manage project issues and corresponding resolution actions, escalating to the Programme Manager, Portfolio Manager or Project Sponsor as required.
• Ensure project documentation is organized and controlled, and in line with standards.
• Identify, record, and act on lessons learned throughout the project lifecycle.
• Ensure any secondary benefits are understood and controlled to realization.

Manage resources
• Work with the Supplier Manager to arrange the supply of resources for the project in line with project plans.
• Manage procurement of external resources, including timely processing of procurement deliverables and approvals.
• Work with technical SMEs to ensure all project resources have clear terms of reference and are clear on the requirements and best delivery approach.
• Actively monitor and manage the delivery performance of resources.
• Coordinate and communicate with the project team/resources to ensure they are engaged and kept up to date on the changing needs and priorities of the project.
• Positively and actively lead and motivate the project team.

Manage communication and stakeholder engagement
• Plan and manage project communications both internally and externally (with client) in line with an actively maintained communication plan.
• Manage client interactions for the project, ensuring a positive experience for the client and collaborating closely with them on matters relating to delivery.
• Project travel may be required.
• Work with the Project Sponsor, Portfolio Manager, and Programme Manager to actively manage engagement, influencing, and communication with internal and external stakeholders to enable successful delivery of the project.
• Work with Partnership colleagues in the Middle East and UK to develop stakeholder relationships, particularly with the UAE MoE and other organizations.

Manage project closure
• Manage the project closure and final handover to the client.
• Complete a Post Implementation Review at the end of the project, liaise with the Operational Performance Analyst on lessons learned, and formally close the project.
• Complete all project closure activities as outlined on the project closure checklist, including finalizing all project finances, closing the project on the CRM, and coordinating the writing of and publication of the internal project closure report.

Functional development
• Contribute to the development of project management methodologies, standards, and tools.
• Actively contribute to the continuous improvement of the function in collaboration with other Project Managers.


Manage complex relationships of a senior level within the client (Ministry of Education). Collaborate internally to navigate and manage the client’s expectations to ensure we can deliver a successful project. Internal: Sponsor, technical teams, regional contacts External: Client, funder, suppliers

What is the major impact of this role on the business?
• The projects led by the Project Manager will typically be up to a maximum of £2m.
• The role holder will shape how the project is run and delivered, and this will have a major impact on the satisfaction of the customer, impacting organization’s reputation in the market and influencing future commercial opportunities.

Essential Knowledge
• Educated to degree level or related experience.
• Prince 2 practitioner (or equivalent); ideally practitioner.
• Good knowledge and experience in working with formal Project Management methodologies such as PRINCE2 and Agile.
• 3 years’ experience in project management

Essential Skill(s) & Experience
• Well-developed project management and organization skills
• Proactive strategic thinker, able to challenge constructively
• Able to identify and manage risk and operate from a risk management approach
• Strong presentation, communication, and negotiation skills
• Ability to find innovative ways of solving or pre-empting problems
• Proven track record of managing complex, large, and/or international projects for demanding clients
• Experience in medium or high-level management and/or ability to communicate effectively and persuasively with the highest level of management
• Fluency in Arabic and English

Key Competencies (organizational values):
• Excellent communicator
• Intercultural sensitivity
• Tenacity
• Ability to recognize the often divergent needs of individuals and groups
• The ability to challenge and explore new ways of doing things
• Able to work to tight deadlines and in a high-pressure environment
• Positive ‘can do’ attitude
• Highly collaborative
• Strong focus on continually improving and seeking new, improved methods and approaches

Key Competencies (Functional)
• Ability to articulate a good understanding of the international education reform marketplace
• Experience working with digital workflows, web technologies, mobile platforms, and apps / digital platforms.
• Knowledge and understanding of digital learning and online education
• Experience in the education, publishing, and/or assessment sectors

The updated CVs in English should be submitted to m.gordeladze@developmentaid.org under the title DRS 16545 Project Manager, UAE. Due to the high number of applications received, we can only reply to shortlisted candidates. Please note that the above requirements can be modified during the recruitment process according to the client's procedures
United Arab Emirates


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