Head of Cluster Administration

London (Greater) (GB)
£56,060-£64,405 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance
26 Oct 2020
End of advertisement period
08 Nov 2020
Academic Discipline
Arts & Humanities
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

The Head of Cluster Administration (HCA) is the most senior professional service position within the Arts & Humanities clusters (Arts / Languages & Literatures / Humanities).

Reporting directly to the Faculty Operating Officer, and with a dotted-reporting line to the academic Vice Dean, the HCA ensures that the academic endeavour is strengthened by excellent professional services provision. The HCA is an integral member of the Faculty Executive Team, Faculty Board, and the Professional Services Leadership Team. Through this wide committee membership, they work closely with the Executive Dean and academic Vice Deans, the Faculty Operating Officer, other Heads of Cluster Administration, and professional services leads on all aspects of strategic planning, strategy and policy development.

The HCA also ensures effective implementation and delivery of administration to departments in their cluster, overseeing and leading the Professional Services team, working in close liaison with functional leads in the Faculty and beyond to ensure that standards are met and exceeded, and any obstacles overcome.


The Faculty actively supports the development of a respectful, positive and supportive culture, which sustains excellence and fosters growth, both for individuals and for the Faculty’s professional services as a whole. We are committed to supporting our staff in a range of ways from considering flexible working and job share arrangements, to facilitating and encouraging continuing professional development activities.

This is a full time post, contract is fixed term to reflect the associate role, likely for 6 months.

Key responsibilities

  • Taking the lead role in the planning and development of strategic and operational professional services support for the students and staff of the Cluster
  • Leading the harmonisation and development of systems, processes and procedures across the departments and programmes in the Cluster; playing a leading role in the formulation and subsequent implementation of the Cluster policies that underpin them, and – in conjunction with the Faculty Operating Officer and other members of the Professional Services Leadership Team – developing Faculty-level policy and practice.
  • Working closely with Heads of Department, and actively participating in the leadership team in departments.
  • Working closely with the thematic Vice-Deans to share best practice, to ensure issues are addressed and to encourage, where appropriate, collaboration in approaches between the cluster of departments, and between them and other departments in the Faculty and beyond
  • Managing Cluster resources in partnership with the Academic Cluster Vice Dean and ensuring that they are kept informed of trends and issues affecting the Cluster’s position.
  • Working with Heads of Department, the Academic Cluster Vice Dean and the Faculty Head of Business Support to manage the annual planning and budget-setting processes, and taking a lead role in managing strategic planning, policy and programme development in the Cluster.
  • Leading the Cluster’s professional services team, taking an active role in recruitment, performance management and appraisal, ensuring effective staff performance, and encouraging and facilitating training and development where appropriate.
  • Overseeing the broader Human Resources operations for the Cluster, including the management of recruitment processes for academic and research staff, the provision of appropriate induction arrangements for new staff, and processes for probation, promotion and performance review.
  • Creating an inclusive culture and ethos across the Cluster professional services teams, ensuring that professional services staff work in strong partnership with academic staff in departments and professional services colleagues in the Faculty team, and fostering an environment in which professional services staff can develop and utilise their skills and expertise.
  • Managing the operations of the Cluster professional services teams to ensure the smooth running of activities in the Cluster and its constituent departments, and liaising closely with colleagues from the Faculty and central professional services teams to ensure effective processes and procedures.
  • Leading a process of continual improvement, developing and implementing Cluster processes and procedures, prioritising those which impact most on the quality of service delivery, streamlining where relevant. Working to share good practice with colleagues in other Clusters and pro-actively contributing to the development of Faculty policies.
  • Taking responsibility for the management of the annual budgeting process for the Cluster and, working closely with the Faculty’s Head of Business Support, ensuring the efficient conduct of all financial operations within the Cluster in accordance with College financial regulations and procedures.
  • Taking a lead role in relation to academic and professional services space planning for the Cluster, including representing the Cluster in negotiations about estates and infrastructure developments. To advise on the allocation of Cluster space.
  • Taking a leading role in fostering an excellent staff and student experience across departments in the Cluster, overcoming barriers and proactively working with colleagues across the university to identify and implement innovative practice.
  • Developing and maintaining effective communication and establishing good working relationships with other faculties and central teams, to eliminate potential internal barriers, enhance collegiality and develop best practice.
  • Providing support to colleagues in managing change, including offering encouragement and advice to professional services managers and academic colleagues in leadership roles, energising and motivating staff to engage with change, ensuring buy-in from academic and professional services colleagues, swiftly adapting to and capitalising on change.
  • Ensuring that risks are appropriately managed and that the Cluster is compliant with College and external regulations and policies.
  • Participating in the development of Faculty and university policy, and to actively engage staff and students in the implementation of Faculty and university policy within the Cluster
  • Participating in the Faculty’s Executive, Faculty’s Professional Services Leadership Team, Faculty Board, and other committees as appropriate. This includes chairing meetings and leading working groups.

Please note that this job description reflects the core activities of the post. There may be changes in the emphasis of duties and it is expected that the post holder recognises this, adopting a flexible approach to work and willingness to participate in training. Day-to-day activities and responsibilities will be determined by the Cluster priorities and needs and will inform specific objectives and tasks to be undertaken by post holders. The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.

Skills, knowledge, and experience

Essential criteria

  • Substantial professional services skills gained within the Higher Education sector and a detailed knowledge of the regulatory, policy and procedural context along with the challenges and opportunities faced by the sector
  • Proven commitment to ongoing skills development in self and others
  • Demonstrable experience of strategic planning and implementation, including preparing budgets, business cases and plans, and monitoring key performance indicators, budgets and risks
  • Proven skills in business continuity planning and implementation
  • High degree of numeracy and the proven ability to analyse statistical data to underpin financial strategic decisions and procedure
  • Proven ability to manage change, and lead colleagues through the change management process
  • Excellent staff management and leadership skills, backed by experience of leading and managing large multi-skilled teams.
  • Proven excellent communication, negotiation and influencing skills at all levels
  • Proven ability to apply regulatory knowledge when offering advice and a demonstrable commitment to maintaining confidentiality
  • Ability to adapt to a changing workload, work under pressure and meet tight deadlines
  • Enthusiasm and can-do attitude with a strong work ethic, applied effectively
  • A commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion, actively addressing areas of potential bias. Demonstrable alignment to King’s Principles in Action.

Desirable criteria

  • Educated to degree level or equivalent and/or holding a relevant postgraduate or professional qualification

Further information 

The selection process will involve a panel interview and presentation.

This advertisement does not meet the requirements for a Certificate of Sponsorship under Home Office regulations and therefore the university will not be able to offer sponsorship for this role.