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Field Operations Manager - Kenya



Posted on Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Position Overview

Educate!, a fast-growing and award-winning social enterprise, is seeking a Field Operations Manager to drive our growth and scale in Kenya 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 Managing Director and be responsible for day-to-day field operations work 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) program, and improving the systems and operations of SkillUp Program, 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 maximize 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 and see through to results while also managing, guiding, coaching, and supporting them. Should be comfortable using data to improve operations. You should be 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. 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

Logistics and field systems Development (30%)

  • Map out and oversee the end-to-end field logistics workflows and co-build with the MD the systems that enable last-mile distribution of program materials.
  • Coordinate with the MD, Director of Program Implementation, Program Managers and country operations to identify gaps, challenges and solutions within the OoSY(Out of School Youth) field operations with the goal of creating a cost-effective operating strategies to address such challenges
  • Lead the development of the field operations road maps and share them with the program teams and the Managing Director.
  • Lead research on areas of expansion and possible general and unique challenges to solve in new markets
  • Lead the process of scouting for training locations and build a framework or criteria for training locations. Research on possible challenges of training sites acquisition and how to navigate through these challenges at scale
  • Collaborate with program managers in facilitating efficient and cost effective field training logistics including people travels.
  • Lead the process of systems and processes standardization to ensure level ground in application of our policies, procedures and systems across all areas of operations.

Field Operations team leadership & Performance Management (30%)

  • Constantly review the team capacity in collaboration with the Managing Director and plan for immediate and long term field operations staffing and capacity building needs.
  • Manage the team to achieve the set goals and objectives and maintain overall oversight of work allocation
  • Establish and maintain a strong, positive and engaged team and establish a culture of continuous learning. Promote Educate!’s cultural tenets within the team.
  • Develop field operations manuals and handbooks and train staff on their use
  • Work closely with the HR on hiring of new team members and participate in the hiring process where needed
  • Lead interdepartmental collaborative meetings to understand changes in the programs and use this information to inform field operations priorities. Represent field operations in inter-departmental and strategic meetings

Field Procurement Planning (30%)

  • Co-plan with the country operations and execute field procurement plans to ensure that all programs procurement support and delivery is a top priority
  • Uphold the procurement policy and strategy and promote the culture of cost consciousness and prudence in resource utilization.
  • Ensure that the field procurement processes are complete, accurate, documented and in compliance with relevant laws and Educate! Policies
  • Ensure that vendor files and documentation is complete with all relevant information and submitted to the country operations per the procedure
  • Create a collaborative environment with the program teams, country operations and design team that enables joint planning to drive efficiency within field operations.
  • Anticipate and plan for field procurement needs, create systems and workflows that effectively track key milestones and deliverables.

Field Operations Budgeting and budget Management (10%)

  • Lead the Quarterly and annual field operations budgeting process and present the budgets to the Managing Director for joint review before approval
  • Lead the budget utilization review for the field operations through the monthly and quarterly Budget versus Actual (BvA) process.
  • Co-create the monthly and quarterly operations goals as well as annual operations work plans and performance objectives.
  • Track field operations budget utilization and ensure 100% fidelity to the set budgets. Approve all field operations budgets and ensure that all the expenditure approvals are aligned with the approved quarterly and annual budgets.
  • Flag potential budgets overspend and initiate the process of getting additional budget through a budget memo process
  • Ensure that the budgeting process and budget utilization is in sync with the Educate!’s budgeting philosophy and promotes the culture of cost consciousness.
  • Ensure full compliance to finance processes relating to field operations. This could include but not limited to payment, reporting, Mobile Money use, systems audits, requisitions, accountabilities, approvals, and Common Cost sheet

Qualifications and Requirements

  • Experience working in a company or organization that has experienced growth – adopting new systems and structures as part of the growth.
  • Experience managing medium operational teams and balancing multiple priorities
  • Comfortable working with data, numbers, Google sheets, dashboards and reports with basic budget management experience
  • Strong orientation to team culture and cross-functional work.
  • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree, 5 years of work experience, with 3+ years of management and/or leadership experience
  • This role is open to Kenyan nationals only and requires 40% field travels
  • 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 of their careers, and we are committed to supporting our staff members on that journey.

  1. We put Youth First, Impact-Obsessed - We never forget that Educate! exists to impact youth. We are purpose-driven. We obsess over impact daily and if it doesn’t lead to impact, we want nothing to do with it. We prioritize interacting with and listening to youth. We design and manage the organization to ensure every dollar creates transformative experiences that youth value.
  2. We Exceed Expectations - We take pride in going above and beyond to achieve the best results. When we know what needs to be done, we do it. We don’t wait to be asked and we don’t stop at what is asked of us. We look for solutions as much as we identify problems.
  3. We Are Always Learning - We are committed to seeking and applying new knowledge and ideas. We stay open-minded. We know there is always another way and we are excited to learn about it. We continuously look for resources of all kinds from multiple disciplines. We try new things, experiment, grow, and improve. We invest in learning for ourselves and our teams.
  4. We are One Team, Many Views - We say what we think while treating each other well. We believe that all people have the same inherent value and that diverse ideas and open dialogue fuel excellence. We constantly strive to create an environment where everyone can and does express themselves freely. We support and respect each other as people and colleagues. We act as one team: We prioritize the organization's mission and goals over team or individual goals.
  5. We have the Startup Mindset - We will always keep innovating to grow our impact. We aspire to be game-changing. We never think “we have arrived” or “we’re done.” We question the status quo in our industry. We move fast and embrace change to move towards our long-term vision. We’re not afraid of failure. We interrogate anything that slows us down.

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.

Child Safeguarding: Educate! is committed to child-safe/youth-safe recruitment, selection and screening. Our recruitment and selection procedures reflect our commitment to the safety and protection of children in our programs. The successful candidate will be required to provide a satisfactory Certificate of Good Conduct as a condition of employment. We reserve the right to decline to offer employment to an individual or terminate an employment contract with an employee that may pose a risk to children and youth.