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Practice Director (Signalling & Telecoms Framework)

  • Job reference: R-027465
  • Sector: Atkins
  • Location: London
This vacancy has now expired

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Practice Director (Signalling & Telecoms Framework) – Transportation

The evolution of SNC-Lavalin’s; Engineering, Design & Project Management (EDPM) division and within it the combining of Atkins Transportation and SNC-Lavalin’s Rail & Transit business in the UK has created a single business of some 3000 talented engineers and professionals.  The breadth of services in transport, combined with our scale makes us a leading UK transport consultancy and a major Design & Build Contractor.
The Transportation Division in the UK has an extensive portfolio of major projects and programmes including complex Engineering, Procurement & Construction (EPC) contracts and frameworks for Network Rail, design contracts with contractors for the largest UK infrastructure schemes and long-term partnership frameworks for Local Authorities.  These projects are delivered by the Project Delivery Practice, led by the Project Delivery Director.

The objectives for the Project Delivery Practice
The development and performance of the Project Delivery Practice sits at the heart of the Transportation Division and is required to provide exceptional project leadership and develop a team of highly proficient project directors and managers, with the appropriate support, capacity, capability and tools to manage our most risky and complex projects.  The practice includes and brings together appropriate commercial and project controls support to build delivery teams to both win and deliver work in our transportation markets.
Maintaining a pipeline of growing project leadership for Atkins, by spotting and nurturing talent from across the division and providing demonstrable development opportunities for those choosing the Project Management career path is a critical success factor.
Delivering our promises externally and internally is vital to the success of the transportation division.

Within the Project Delivery Practice, a number of Delivery Practice Directors report directly to the Project Delivery Director, currently;
•Practice Director (Rail Signalling & Telecoms Frameworks) – This Role
•Practice Director (Major Rail Projects)
•Practice Director (Highways Projects)

Practice Directors are allocated a portfolio of projects within the delivery practice with the following responsibilities;
Project Leadership
•Practice Directors will provide leadership of at least one of the projects and or programmes in their portfolio, taking responsibility for achieving the project objectives.  This includes, in addition to achieving the cost, time and quality requirements of the project, establishing strong client relationships and adhering to high safety standards.  It is expected that the project/s managed by the Practice Director will serve as an exemplar for other projects in the portfolio.  In the case of the Practice Director (Rail Signalling & Telecoms Framework), this is the framework its self and may include other projects, as required.
For the Framework this will include;
•Responsible for Health & Safety performance to Network Rail and will be supported by our Framework HSSEQ Lead.

•Responsible for supplier selection.  Engage with the supplier’s senior management to ensure that there is a cultural alignment with the key values of the Framework.

•Establish a Framework Delivery Organisation (FDO), the organisation will be geographically based within the Framework area and led by the Framework Director, regionally appointed Framework Delivery Manager and Engineering Manager.  These key individuals will sit on the Framework Management Group & be supported by a team of experienced discipline leads.

Client Facing
The S&T Framework Director will build strong relationships with the Client delivery teams, route teams, working with them to develop their investment and renewals programmes.
The individual will get a real ‘kick’ out of working with people (especially clients) and have excellent communication skills.
They will also have a good understanding of Key Account Management and first-class service provision, where the following would be advantageous;
•Experience of working with route teams, train operators, maintenance and regionally based contractors within the Strategic Rail marketplace.

•Proven track record of building effective networks and identifying/securing new opportunities through new value propositions and partnering with clients.

•Opportunity management (leading and winning).

•Have a high level of commercial awareness.

Line Management
Take responsibility for the line management (recruitment, staff development and training, performance assessments, rewards and recognition) of a proportion of the project management staff in the Project Delivery Practice.  The team managed will generally align with the project management team deployed on the portfolio of projects allocated to the PD.  However, given the matrix structure of the organisation, this will vary to some extent as project management staff transfer between projects that sit in other portfolios.
The Practice Director (Signalling & Telecoms Framework) is to provide mentoring support to the project leadership and delivery teams within the portfolio, the extent of which will depend upon the project circumstances.  Where a shortfall in capability is identified, the responsibility of the Practice Director (Signalling & Telecoms Framework) to propose and oversee corrective actions.

Support to Project Delivery Director
Beyond the project and specific portfolio needs identified above, provide support to the PDD to carry out the following;
• Recruit skills and capability to meet the needs of the markets and practice.
• Provide project leadership to strategic bids where appropriate.
• Contribute to achieving practice performance targets including meeting or exceeding productivity targets, minimising break-even costs and obtaining maximum value from non-billable time.
• Drive consistency in the use of management tools and techniques.
• Lead a team of project directors and project managers across a number of offices that respond flexibly to business needs.
• Drive collaboration across markets and divisions.
• Drive consistent tools and methodology across the division and include as appropriate the community leading on lower risk projects, not directly controlled by Project Delivery but managed from within the practices.
• Work with the Client Directors to establish both long- and short-term resource demand based on the pipeline of opportunities.
• Ensure skills and capacity meet the needs of the target markets through targeted recruitment and staff development.
• Where skills are not available in-house, create relationships with external partners and subcontractors to deliver project needs.
• Provide project leadership to strategic bids and live projects when appropriate.
• Drive Project Management (PM) excellence and lead on delivering priorities within the business plan.
• Use the senior Project Manager and Project Director community to deliver coaching and mentoring to develop our emerging talent and maintain succession plans for delivery leadership.
• Ensure the appropriate governance measures are applied on our projects.
• Ensure the effectiveness of the line management of the staff within your practice team, facilitated by regular two-way communications.

• Proven Programme Management experience in senior leadership roles within major and/or complex projects and understanding of the support and tools needed to support effective project delivery.
• Proven Programme management experience in a senior leadership role developing, costing & delivering multiple minor works type works. 
• Ability to command respect from the senior project management community.
• Well developed leadership, communication, negotiating, influencing and interpersonal skills, with the drive and commitment to achieve project and programme wide objectives.
• Ability and desire to engage with clients at all levels to fulfil market, project and client needs.
• Experienced in programme planning, able to set standards, provide guidance, and audit delivery of standards.
• Knowledge and experience to handle contractual issues competently.
• Awareness and specialist knowledge, sufficient to ensure safety in the transportation environment.
• Management level knowledge of and commitment to customer service, financial control, competitive tendering, engineering quality and health and safety matters.
• Performance and goal driven.

The Individual
•Professionally qualified with a relevant engineering or project management profession.
•Experience of shaping and leading a large team of professionals achieved either through a significant major project or in a broader leadership role.
•A hard working and flexible individual, familiar with working within a matrix structure, who is reliable proactive and innovative, whilst able to keep calm under pressure and when working to often demanding deadlines.
•A high expectation of performance for themselves and other members of the team, coupled with drive for continuous improvement.
•Customer focused with excellent relationship management skills.
•You should have strong leadership and managerial qualities, with proven team management and communication skills and the ability to motivate and mentor staff accordingly.
•A supporting and encouraging approach to mentoring less experienced members of project teams, combined with a passion for staff development.
•Strong collaborative behaviours to interface with the markets and practices and other functions within transportation.
•Be able to travel across the UK and work away from home, including possible periods overseas on assignments.

Key Measures
•Practice group utilisation.
•Practice Group breakeven reduction.
•Project development and conversion rate for each year during the framework
•Staff development and performance.
•Employee satisfaction, retention rate and people development.
•Promote project management excellence across the practice and the wider Transportation business.
•Support and promote the use of our Global Delivery Centre on projects where delivery efficiencies can be gained.

Atkins develops individuals through a portfolio of training and development activities designed to help you make the best of your abilities and talents.  These are reviewed with individuals through an annual appraisal process.  We actively support staff in achieving corporate membership of relevant institutions.

Additional Information
We support flexible working and equal opportunities as we believe that diverse teams provide the best mix of interpersonal and technical skills needed to exceed our customers’ expectations.

This role may require security clearance and offers of employment will be dependent on obtaining the relevant level of clearance. If this is necessary it will be discussed with you at interview.

If applying to this role please do not make reference to (in conversation) or include in your application or CV, details of any current or previously held security clearance. 

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