Retail Operations Manager

Durham, United Kingdom
£35,333 - £42,155 per annum
16 Sep 2022
End of advertisement period
30 Sep 2022
Contract Type
Full Time

Operations Directorate

Grade 7: - £35,333 - £42,155 per annum
Open-Ended/Permanent - Full Time
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date : 30-Sep-2022, 6:59:00 AM 

Job Title: Retail Operations Manager
Department: College Operations Directorate    
Grade:  Grade 7 
Salary range: £35,333 - £42,155 per annum   
Working arrangements: Full time – all year around – 52 weeks per year. 35 Hours per week generally between 8am – 6pm any 5 days from 7 mainly Monday to Friday with some occasional weekend working.

The University 

At Durham University we are proud of our people.  A globally outstanding centre of educational excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, a unique and historic setting – Durham is a university like no other. We believe that inspiring our people to do outstanding things at Durham enables Durham people to do outstanding things professionally and personally.  

The Role and Department 

The Colleges Directorate forms part of the Colleges and Student Experience Division which is responsible for providing world class student experience to our diverse student community.

The Colleges Operations Directorate plays an integral role in providing excellent services and facilities to support the personal development of student. The services provided by the Directorate include catering, housekeeping, reception, security and maintenance as well as providing systems for the management of health and safety and food safety.

The Operations Manager is a key management position reporting to the Retail Catering Executive and is responsible for the day-to-day operational management of all retail catering operations. 

Working at Durham  

A competitive salary is only one part of the many fantastic benefits you will receive if you join the University: you will also receive access to the following fantastic benefits:

  • 30 Days annual leave per year in addition to 8 public holidays and 4 customary days per year – a total of 42 days per year.   
  • The University closes between Christmas and New Year.
  • We offer a generous pension scheme, As a new member of staff you will be automatically enrolled  into the University Superannuation Scheme (USS). 
  • No matter how you travel to work, we have you covered.  We have parking across campus, a cycle to work scheme which helps you to buy a bike and discount with local bus and train companies. 
  • There is a genuine commitment to developing our colleagues professionally and personally.  There is a comprehensive range of development courses, apprenticeships and access to qualifications and routes to develop your career in the University.  All staff have dedicated annual time to concentrate on their personal development opportunities.  
  • Lots of support for health and wellbeing including discounted membership for our state of the art sport and gym facilities and access to a 24-7 Employee Assistance Programme. 
  • On site nursery is available and children’s clubs in the summer holidays. 
  • Family friendly policies, including maternity and adoption leave, which are among the most generous in the higher education sector (and likely above and beyond many employers). 
  • The opportunity to take part in staff volunteering activities to make a difference in the local community 
  • Discounts are available via our benefits portal including; money off at supermarkets, high street retailers, IT products such as Apple, the cinema and days out at various attractions.  
  • A salary sacrifice scheme is also available to help you take advantage of tax savings on benefits.  
  • If you are moving to Durham, we can help with removal costs and we have a dedicated team who can help you with the practicalities such as house hunting and schools.  If you need a visa, we cover most visa costs and offer an interest free loan scheme to pay for dependant visas. 

Durham University is committed to equality diversity, inclusion and values

Our collective aim is to create an open and inclusive environment where everyone can reach their full potential and we believe our staff should reflect the diversity of the global community in which we work.   As a University equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) are a key part of the University’s Strategy and a central part of everything we do.  We also live by our values and our Staff Code of Conduct.  At Durham we actively work towards providing an environment where our staff and students can study, work and live in a community which is supportive and inclusive. It’s important to us that all of our colleagues are aligned to both our values and commitment to EDI. 

We welcome and encourage applications from members of groups who are under-represented in our work force including people with disabilities, women and black, Asian and minority ethnic communities.  If you have taken time out of your career, and you feel it relevant, let us know about it in your application.  If you are a candidate with a disability, we are committed to ensuring fair treatment throughout the recruitment process. We will make adjustments to support the interview process wherever it is reasonable to do so and, where successful, reasonable adjustments will be made to support people within their role. 

Typical Role Requirements

Service Delivery

  • Provide input to the design and development of service processes, techniques and deliverables for one or more service areas or projects.  
  • Responsible for managing small budgets for consumables and some capital items, keeping records and processing invoices. 
  • Provide management for the operation of a stakeholder focussed service delivery area. 
  • Prepare and manage the service area budget or budgets and monitor expenditure to ensure cost-effective service delivery. 
  • Contribute to the delivery of activities that generate external income. 
  • Deliver support elements of the wider student experience.  
  • A commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion and the University’s values.

Planning and Organising

  • Manage operational service activities to ensure excellence in the stakeholder experience.  to the analysis of stakeholder feedback to help define needs and requirements, inputting to the design and planning of services. 
  • Manage and monitor service performance and provide metrics and reports to Service Heads, making recommendations as appropriate. 
  • Develop, modify and optimise service protocols and methodologies. 
  • Contribute to the production and analysis of statistical service metrics to identify successful delivery and areas for future improvement. 
  • Implement continuous service improvements to enhance the delivery of stakeholder services. 
  • Contribute to the analysis of stakeholder feedback to help define needs and requirements, inputting to the design and planning of services. 


  • Provide feedback on team and individual performance and identify development needs, conducting regular staff ADR and performance reviews. 
  • Handle the vast majority of welfare issues within a team, referring more complex welfare issues to appropriate support services/senior management. 
  • Delivery of ongoing coaching, mentoring and training to team members. 
  • Devolve responsibilities to team members to ensure continuity of service provision and encourage skills development. 


  • Internal and external relationship development and partnership working, networking and participation to engage and influence future services and the University reputation. 
  • Contribute to business meetings, working groups and sub committees at departmental and operational service levels. 
  • Participate in and monitor communities of practice and partnership working internally and externally. 
  • Network and engage with external and internal stakeholders to gather feedback and identify future service needs, to ensure excellence in service provision. 
  • Distribute and process key service information to all stakeholders. 
  • Communicate with internal and external stakeholders using appropriate media and methods. 

Knowledge and Experience

  • Professional practitioner with clear management experience of managing a team of managers on a day-to-day basis to deliver key objectives and ensure the operational effectiveness of retail sites throughout the university.
  • Maintain an awareness of current policy for University business goals such as widening participation and access.
  • Experience managing a multi-site retail sites/concepts to achieve business objectives in relation to service standards, financial contribution, health & safety and stakeholder partnerships.
  • Experience in the management of food safety systems
  • Any other reasonable duties.

What you need to demonstrate when you apply/Person Specification 

When you apply it is important that you let us know what skills/experience you have from a similar role and/or what skills/experience you have which would make you right for this role.  Further information about the role and responsibilities is at the end of this job description.   

Where a criteria has an asterix* next to it, it may be given additional weighting when your application is considered.  Your application should cover the following criteria: 

Essential Criteria

  1. Excellent oral and written communication skills and the ability to develop excellent working relationships both internally and externally. 
  2. Excellent digital competence with demonstrable skills in using core digital tools including internet, email, digital communication tools, Microsoft 365 applications, digital booking system, project planning, financial systems. 
  3. Five GCSE’s at least Grade C or level four (or equivalent) including English Language and Mathematics (or equivalent experience).
  4. Post-16 qualification (or equivalent experience).
  5. Educated to degree level (or equivalent experience).
  6. Continuing professional development required to maintain professional recognition. 
  7. Professional practitioner with knowledge and expertise used to contribute to the delivery and development of services, events and activities within the organisation. 
  8. Experience of managing and developing a team or teams and/or line management qualification. 
  9. Experience of providing specialist advice and guidance to a range of customers and colleagues, including more senior colleagues. 
  10. Experience of being able to network effectively and develop strong and productive working relationships, to influence perceptions of the University. 
  11. Experience of implementing policy and procedures and involvement with future changes for a service area. 
  12. Knowledge and experience of ensuring compliance with regulatory and organisational policy and guidelines.   
  13. Ability to contribute to planning at operational level. 

Desirable Criteria

  1. Experience working with students from matriculation to graduation
  2. Experience in the planning and operational delivery of new sites and refurbishments

How to Apply

To progress to the assessment stage, candidates must evidence each of the essential criteria required for the role in the person specification above. It will be at the discretion of the recruiting panel as to whether they will also consider any desirable criteria, but we would urge candidates to provide evidence for all criteria.  Please don’t forget to check if there is any weighted criteria (see above). 

While some criteria will be considered at the shortlisting stage, other criteria may be considered later in the assessment process, such as questions at interview.  

Submitting your application  

We prefer to receive applications online.   We will update you about your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system. Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to make sure you have not missed any of our updates. 

What you need to submit    

  1. A CV: and 
  2. A covering letter which outlines your experience and examples of how you meet all of the criteria within the Person Specification.  

Contact details    

For a chat about the role or any further information please contact Deborah Richardson, Retail Catering Executive: deborah.l.richardson@durham.ac.uk

Please note that in submitting your application Durham University will be processing your data. We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement https://www.durham.ac.uk/about-us/governance/information-governance/privacy-notices/privacy-notices/job-applicants/ which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data.

When appointing to this role the University must ensure that it meets any applicable immigration requirements, including salary thresholds which are applicable to some visas.

DBS Requirement: Not Applicable.

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