Position Overview 

Educate!, a fast-growing and award-winning social enterprise, is seeking a Director of Field Operations to drive our growth and scale in Uganda as we work towards our organizational vision of measurably impacting millions of students across Africa each year. In this role, you’ll report to the Country Director and be responsible for building and overseeing the systems that enable our operations in the field to run efficiently and effectively. This includes setting up field operations for the out-of-school youth (OoSY), and improving the systems and operations of Educate! Experience Programs(4.0), and working with the performance metrics functions on reporting procedures and workflows. You will ensure we are building and experimenting with diverse systems to optimize our field operations processes and maximise efficiency and effectiveness as we scale.  In addition, you will lead, coach, inspire, and build a passionate and results-oriented team that will drive the realization of our ambition over the next years. 

The right person for this role is someone who thrives in a high-growth environment and is able to build stable and scalable systems and continuously improve them. Able to oversee a team through to results while also managing, guiding, coaching, and supporting them. Should be comfortable using data to improve operations, open to learning from other industries, adopting new ways of working, and changing processes based on feedback. A driven, creative systems builder & problem-solver who is motivated by removing obstacles to help field teams design and scale high-impact operations systems. 

About Educate! 

What if there was a way to measurably change the trajectory of the lives of youth across Africa? Since its launch in 2009, Educate! has worked to do just this, delivering outsized impacts at scale and at disproportionately low cost, through a product-led approach to youth development. As a disruptive, not-for-profit, social enterprise, our team leverages an obsession with evidence and entrepreneurial drive to tackle one of our planet's greatest challenges - unlocking the potential of its youngest continent. 

Educate!’s core model combines training in key skills with access to practical experience starting a business and mentorship, a formula that has been validated by several independent evaluations. This model is distributed through products targeting two lead channels. First, Educate! works with governments to help reform education systems at scale through policy change, teacher behaviour change and tech-enabled products targeting systems-level sustainability, while also working directly with select schools. Second, Educate! builds employment-focused bootcamps and business support services targeting out-of-school youth left out of the education system. To date, more than 200,000 youth have been meaningfully impacted by this model across Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya and along the way, Educate! has become the largest youth skills provider in East Africa.

Educate! is a team of over 160 largely African staff and 300 volunteer youth mentors. We have been backed by top foundations and product leaders such as Imaginable Futures, Big Bang Philanthropy, Echoing Green, the 1st Google Employee’s foundation, the head of Google Search and Rippleworks Foundation. Educate! won a 2018 Klaus J. Jacobs Prize and a 2015 WISE Award, and has been highlighted by Bill Gates, in the World Bank’s S4YE's Impact Portfolio, an Al Jazeera documentary, BBC, and The Brookings Institution as one of 14 case studies in their global scaling education learning initiative. Educate! was also selected by the UN’s Generation Unlimited as 1 of 20 innovative youth solutions and by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as a Goalkeepers Accelerator

Educate!'s long-term vision is to design solutions that measurably impact millions of youth across Africa each year.

Performance Objectives 

Program Field Operations Systems’ Oversight  30%

  • Set up the field operations department by creating job descriptions and leading the hiring and establishment of the team in line with Educate! culture. 
  • Coordinate with the director of implementation, strategists and the Deputy COO to identify areas or gaps, challenges and solutions within the field operations with the goal of creating a cost-effective operating strategy for residential bootcamps
  • Oversee and optimize the implementation of the systems and workflows of the field operations. Collaborate with the Director of Tech to develop efficient and automated approaches to field operations systems. 
  • Lead the development of the field operations road maps and share them with the program teams.
  • Set up finance systems that enable efficient financial approvals by the Country and Program Directors while ensuring all program payments are processed and received on time. Work with the Program Managers to budget for all field operation activities and systems while meeting with the finance department monthly to liaise on issues of procedure compliance, payment reports, mobile money cash flow, and audit. Oversee finance systems from requests, to finance approvals to teams receiving funds to run programs.
  • Solve field logistical program operations-related challenges based on deep research from reputable sources including peer organisations and auditors

Field Operations Department leadership & Performance Management 30%

  • Manage the team to achieve departmental goals and objectives. Develop capacity building process for the Field Operations Manager, Program data quality officers and youth leaders
  • Establish and maintain a strong, positive and engaged team culture. Serve as a coach and mentor to staff empowering the team to achieve exceptional results while establishing a strategy for pipelining staff for management positions
  • Create field operations manual and provide oversight on youth leader and mentor handbooks
  • Maintain oversight of work allocation and capacity and participate in hiring processes as needed. Work with HR to review and update youth leaders and program quality officers' recruitment strategy.
  • Lead interdepartmental meetings to understand changes in the programs and inform updates in the field operations priorities and solve field operations interdepartmental challenges. Represent field operations in the retrospective and strategic product meetings
  • Align field operations systems to financial systems, policies and procedures to changes in products and field operations.
  • Model and promote Educate!’s cultural tenets. Establish a mentor-centred management culture. Ensure honesty and integrity of management style and information.
  • Regularly observe field program managers & program quality officers lead meetings, conference calls, and training and provide feedback based on observation.
  • Conduct 3-tier management by observing program quality officers and youth leaders in their roles. 

Reporting procedures and Workflows Oversight 20%

  • Collaborate with performance metrics to make sure data flows and pipelines are built for the OoSY program. Ensure termly review of the Educate! Experience data flows and pipelines to identify gaps and areas that need to be strengthened
  • Identify areas that require new or improved systems and workflows and collaborate with the technology and performance metrics team to solve them.
  • Identify reporting capacity needs and suggest solutions to the technology and performance metrics team.
  • Review end-of-term monitoring reports and provide insights from the data collection field operations lens.
  • Ensure timely communication with the technology, product  & performance metrics teams when there are glitches in the systems or workflows
  • Attend technology and performance team strategy meetings to be fully updated on the goals, priorities and challenges they are working on.
  • Oversight of data collection, data accuracy and data collection implementation by the field operations team.

Mentor Strategy and OOSY Contractor Strategy Oversight  20%

  • Mentor oversight: Coordinate with the Director of program implementation to inform mentor strategy updates and changes. Ensure the field operations team has an updated mentor list with mentor backups and that all mentor agreements are filled before they start volunteering with the organisation. Ensure all mentors are observed and given feedback to inform their performance tracking and capacity building.
  • Follow up with field operations managers to share weekly mentor reports which are updated with mentor drops. Audit the mentor request centre monthly to evaluate how we respond to mentor challenges or questions.
  • Contractor strategy oversight: Create an efficient system to recruit and manage contractors. Plan for the youth entrepreneurship training to have a constant list or trainer backup ready to implement OoSY bootcamps. Ensure all contractors have signed contracts before they begin any work and that they are paid on time after completing all their deliverables.  Set up a contractor performance system to drop those that are not performing well.

Qualifications 

    • Experience working in a company or organization that has experienced growth – adopting new systems and structures as part of the growth.
    • Experience managing medium to large-sized operational teams at scale and balancing multiple priorities 
    • Comfortable working with data, numbers, and reports with basic budget management experience
    • Strong orientation to team culture and cross-functional work.
    • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree, 8+ years of work experience, with 5+ years of management and/or leadership experience
    • This role is open to Ugandan nationals only and women are strongly encouraged to apply.
    • A good fit with our Five Cultural Tenets (see “What is Educate! About?” Below; learn more by looking at Educate!’s culture deck here

What Is Educate! About?

We’re ambitious. Are you? Educate! is growing fast, so new opportunities are opening up and expanding all the time. We’re inspired by people with drive, and we love to help them reach their full potential. We expect everyone at Educate! to contribute above and beyond their job description, grow their skills, and advance their careers, and we are committed to supporting our staff members on that journey.

  1. We Put Youth First - The youth we serve come first. Always. In everything. That means we wake up thinking of ways we can serve youth even better and get the highest impact out of every dollar that we spend. It means Educate! doesn’t own a single vehicle, because we’d rather take the bus if it means one more student can participate. It means making every decision as the future depends on it — because if we get our way, it does.
  2. We Are Always Learning - When you work at Educate!, educating yourself is part of your job too. We encourage every employee to find the best book on management; share the latest article on graphic design; bring in your favourite college mentor, or meet the researcher pushing the edge of the field. We are always thirsty for knowledge and love to share.
  3. We Only Solve a Problem Once - We are allergic to band-aids so we love the person who brings the new system to solve the problem for good, even problems we haven’t recognized yet.
  4. We Are Flexible - We thrive on change — we’re driving it. We are growing every day, so we have to adapt quickly to meet new challenges, and our team keeps up.
  5. We Exceed Expectations - We assume we can achieve the impossible because we already have, year after year. We want our staff to create their own challenges, ask the toughest questions, and dream scary big!

Every person at Educate! from interns to the executive director is evaluated by how they live up to these five cultural tenets. They are at the core of how we achieve our mission and why we work as well as we do. 

Educate is committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all who interact in our community.  In creating this environment, we encourage people from a variety of cultures, backgrounds and life experiences to join our diverse team. 

Apply for this Job

* Required
resume chosen  
(File types: pdf, doc, docx, txt, rtf)
cover_letter chosen  
(File types: pdf, doc, docx, txt, rtf)