Senior Project Manager

Edinburgh, United Kingdom
11 Jul 2019
End of advertisement period
09 Aug 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

Closing date 9 Aug 2019 23:00 (UK time)
Salary £50,132–£58,089 (Grade 9)
Location Edinburgh
Department Estates _ Capital Projects
Category Estates
Status Full Time

About Heriot-Watt University

Heriot-Watt University has five campuses: three in the UK (Edinburgh, Scottish Borders and Orkney), one in Dubai and one in Malaysia. The University offers a highly distinctive range of degree programmes in the specialist areas of science, engineering, design, business and languages.

With a history dating back to 1821, Heriot-Watt University has established a reputation for world-class teaching and practical, leading-edge research, which has made it one of the top UK universities for business and industry. We connect with industry at every level and develop programmes to match their needs – so employers get work-ready industry-fit graduates.

Heriot-Watt is also Scotland's most international university, boasting the largest international student cohort.

We have an established set of values that help us to nurture innovation and leadership, and show our commitment to continuous improvement and development in all our activities.

For full details on our University please view our Careers at Heriot-Watt http://www.hw.ac.uk/about/careers-at-heriot-watt.htm

About our Team

Estates and Facilities is a key professional service directorate within the University’s professional services’ operating structure. Capital Projects is currently one of 4 divisions within the directorate. The directorate has around 300 staff.

The University project programme has previously included major developments in the range £10M to £30M, a mid-range of projects from £1M to £10M and a significant range of technically complex smaller alteration, upgrading or refurbishment projects. The 2019/2021 capital programme includes the new-build National Robotarium and a range of refurbishment and upgrade works. The Capital Projects Team currently comprises eight permanent staff supplemented by contract/agency staff as required.

In Edinburgh, the University estate principally comprises a campus site positioned within the green belt to the West of Edinburgh. It totals 154 hectares with some 100 buildings providing a developed floor space of upwards of 160,000m², together with grounds, roads, car parks, HV Electrical network, high pressure gas network, mains water distribution and pumping system and drainage. There are also other Scottish Campuses based at Galashiels and in Orkney. The University also has Campuses located in Dubai and Malaysia.

Detailed Description

Reporting to the Head of Project and Development Services (HoP&DS), the post holder will provide day to day management of the operational activities of the Capital Projects delivery team. Also, the post holder will provide strategic level support to the Head of Project & Development Services in the delivery of strategic capital property projects.

Key duties and responsibilities

The tasks and responsibilities listed under the following Competency Headings form part of all leadership roles in the University at this level and it is expected that the role-holder will perform them to at least an effective standard at all times.

Strategic Outlook:

  1. Contribute to the delivery of the University strategy, drawing upon and sharing knowledge gained through engagement and close relationships with colleagues to inform and influence decisions.
  2. Contribute to the translation of University Strategies into operational planning and outcomes, keeping in mind the bigger picture and the external environment.
  3. Support the planning, development and project management of estates capital projects to enable the delivery of the University Strategic Plan and best possible facilities outcomes for stakeholders, users and enhancement of student experience.


  1. Effective leadership and line management of Project administration and support staff and nominated external contractors, ensuring that high standards are achieved, in accordance with University regulations and procedures.
  2. (NB - The Head of Capital Projects and Development Services is the line manager for all internal Project Managers and Technical staff)
  3. Develop and/or guide other members of the team on specific tasks and activities, giving advice and guidance based on knowledge, identifying any training needs. Monitor and assess achieved learning through observation and feedback, and provide mentoring and guidance to team members.
  4. Carry out annual Performance and Development Review for agreed relevant staff.
  5. Act as Project Manager on delegated projects leading the client management team to facilitate the preparation of feasibility studies and appraisals working with client user groups. Develop project briefs and, through the application of sound professional practice, implement projects within agreed constraints of time, quality safety and cost to a high level of user satisfaction.

Management Responsibilities:

  1. Working with HoCP&DS, manage the Capital Projects Team to deliver a programme of variable capital projects by the design and allocation of appropriate team resource and provision of technical and professional support.
  2. Ensure that projects are developed and managed to appropriate RIBA or University Gateway stages within University process and procedure and Scottish Funding Council Guidelines and are implemented to achieve stakeholders and users' aims and objectives within agreed constraints of time, quality and cost.
  3. Support nominated staff individually, including setting objectives, managing workloads, performance, attendance, capability and development.
  4. Provide support and advice to the relevant senior colleagues (including the directorate management team) and others as required on relevant project and planning matters.
  5. Provide advice on relevant construction and project matters to the Estates and Facilities team and to other University stakeholders including providing support for the delivery of the UK University Estates Strategy and related University business objectives.
  6. Effective financial management, including coordination of financial analysis and reporting in partnership with University Finance Services all in accordance with University procedures.
  7. The exercise of professional skills to ensure optimised value to the University of a wide range of project types.

Team Work:

  1. Proactively support the development of the team and successful collaboration across the Directorate and University.
  2. Build visible and effective professional relationships across the University and external stakeholders.
  3. Contribute to and actively participate in team, Directorate and University projects.

Championing Change:

  1. Assess and lead on change management, influencing and managing stakeholder expectations.
  2. Manage and support the implications of change on the team, and help to maintain team morale and service levels.

Decision Making:

  1. Contribute to operational decision making both independently and collaboratively, including determining section priorities, planning resource allocation within a delegated budget; deciding independently the more effective use of budget; and making decisions with the management team affecting the working of the wider Directorate.

Planning and Organising:

  1. Management of selection/appointment activities of external consultant teams and management of on-site contractors, within University process, procedure and guidelines.
  2. Develop new and improve existing University project systems, processes and procedures to ensure a progression of continuous development.
    • A key responsibility will be ensuring full compliance with University, HEFCE and industry standard process, procedure and guidelines and ensuring accurate and effective financial monitoring and reporting systems.
    • The responsibility will include optimisation of interface systems, processes and procedures, leading to development of short-form Service Level Agreements, in conjunction with key internal partner services.
  3. Plan, prioritise and organise the resources required for the effective operation of a work team; coordinate teams or project streams setting performance standards and developing monitoring procedures to track progress.
  4. Ensure each nominated project is executed within the guidelines required by the University and industry established Project Management Codes of Practice.
  5. Manage delegated project budgets to achieve compliance with University standing financial instructions, procurement procedures and Scottish Funding Council Procedure Notes for Capital Projects including execution of the responsibilities and duties defined for the Project Manager.
  6. Assist with monitoring and updating lists of consultants and contractors engaged by the University including performance appraisal to ensure that they are satisfying the University requirements.

Initiative and Problem Solving:

  1. Use initiative and creativity to resolve problems with no immediately apparent solution using analytical techniques to achieve a solution.
    • E.g. work with the Head of Capital Projects and Development Services to facilitate workshop sessions to assess problems and identify solutions.
  2. Identify and use appropriate existing methods of analysis or investigation as required, obtaining additional information as the investigation develops.
    • E.g. assessing the value and best continuing use of assets; or leading the gathering, collation and analysis of information on the business environment, identifying opportunities for the University, drawing from a number of market intelligence sources.

Service Excellence:

  1. Provide clear leadership to ensure the effective and efficient delivery of a high-quality service, developing high professional standards and excellent customer service.
  2. Development of sector best practice project management processes and procedures for capital projects delivery and advising University senior management accordingly.
  3. With the other relevant managers, ensure that all policies, systems, procedures and guidelines are in place to comply with all legislative and regulatory requirements related to estate development work
  4. Ensure that new building developments are handed over to the University, as the Client, to the required standards and with the appropriate documentation and certificates.
  5. Facilitate seamless handover of completed projects to clients and ensure that formal presentation of facilities and engineering services takes place to in-house maintenance managers and trades personnel.

Clear and Consistent Communications:

  1. Effective engagement and communication with University management, stakeholders and external partners regarding capital projects and estates development.
  2. Set up, lead and co-ordinate nominated project communications between the user clients, external consultants and internal service providers. Ensure lines of communication are understood and that all necessary consultations take place at the appropriate stage. Ensure that regular reports are available on all aspects of the project including cost control and that furniture and equipment requirements commissioning and transfer arrangements are considered, planned and implemented as required.
  3. Establish, maintain and improve relations with client groups and undertake client liaison activities to ensure through proper communication, consultation and planning that appropriate projects are developed and delivered to meet the needs of building users.


  1. Demonstrate the University Values at all times through performance and behaviour
  2. Participate in ad-hoc duties to support the team/University and for personal development
  3. Support newer or inexperienced colleagues within and outside the University by offering support, help and advice
  4. Provide mentoring support (informally and formally)
  5. Positively promote the University internally and externally through positive behaviour and supporting University-wide activities

Special Arrangements

  1. Participate in the University's management out of hours emergency provision arrangements, if required.

This job description is intended as a flexible framework which outlines the key general areas of activity in your position. Other activities may be required which are not outlined above but which are appropriate to the position and grade.

Education, qualifications and experience


  1. Educated to degree level in a relevant discipline, which may include Quantitity Surveying, Building Surveying, building and construction or project management.
  2. Chartered membership of an relevant professional body (e.g. RICS, MCIOB, CIBSE or ICE)
  3. Extensive post qualification experience of managing projects and/or portfolios of projects from inception to completion in a multi-disciplinary environment.
  4. Demonstrable experience of construction contracts, procurement, construction legislation, health and safety management, building design and specification (including NBS), cost management and value engineering.
  5. Knowledge of developing and managing project e-financial management, monitoring and project reporting systems.
  6. Can demonstrate highly skilled and practical hands-on and knowledgeable experience of the building construction industry.
  7. Can demonstrate an ability to write professionally in a business environment – business reports, senior management papers/briefings and contract communications.
  8. Proven experience of preparation of briefing documents and contract formats for major and minor works programmes.
  9. Demonstrable experience of managing resources, workloads and changing priorities for self and others.
  10. Excellent interpersonal, influencing and presentation skills, able to understand and communicate complex issues effectively.
  11. Demonstrable excellent appitude for customer service and attention to detail.
  12. Demonstrable ability to work quickly, flexibly and accurately in a dynamic, changing and pressured environment.
  13. Experience of working closely with stakeholders across all levels of the organisation.
  14. High level organisational skills with the ability to prioritise major developments and to function effectively in a pressured environment.
  15. Ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team.
  16. Excellent influencing skills.
  17. Ability to lead, communicate effectively with, and motivate, teams of professional staff.
  18. Good track record of developing and maintaining positive working relationships with internal and external customers, peers, stakeholders and others.
  19. Flexible, resilient, collaborative and proactive.
  20. Effective IT skills in a business environment (specifically MS Office inc. MS Project).
  21. Knowledge of current fire safety and building control legislation.
  22. Understanding of permit-to-work systems relating to critical services.
  23. Experience of public procurement procedures(OJEU/PCS) in relation to high-value contracts , ensuring compliance with rules and guidelines.


  1. Experience of Higher Education Sector projects either in public or private sector and be familiar with sector direction and student experience priorities.
  2. Demonstable experience of developing, managing and monitoring project e-financial reporting systems.
  3. Demonstable experience of developing, managing and monitoring process & procedure compliance in a changing professional environment.

How To Apply

Applications can be submitted up to midnight (UK time) on PLEASE ENTER CLOSING DATE.

At Heriot-Watt University we understand that being diverse makes us better which is why we support a culture of respect and equal opportunity, and value diversity at the heart of what we do. We want to increase the diversity of our workplace to underpin a dynamic and creative environment.

We welcome and will consider flexible working patterns e.g. part-time working and job share options.

Use our total rewards calculator: https://www.hw.ac.uk/about/work/total-rewards-calculator.htm to see the value of benefits provided by Heriot-Watt University.

Minimum Salary 50132

Maximum Salary 58089

Currency GBP

Amount of Travel

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