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Chief Operating Officer

Perth (Suburb), Western Australia (AU)
$123,330 – $130,504 p.a. (pro-rata) plus 17% superannuation
Closing date
14 Mar 2024
  • Lead operational excellence to drive impactful agricultural research and development collaborations in Western Australia.
  • Level 10, full-time appointment on a 17-month fixed term basis.
  • Base salary range: $123,330 – $130,504 p.a. (pro-rata) plus 17% superannuation.

The University of Western Australia (UWA) is ranked among the top 100 universities in the world and a member of the prestigious Australian Group of Eight research intensive universities. With a strong research track record, vibrant campus and working environments, supported by the freedom to innovate and inspire, there is no better time to join Western Australia’s top university.

About the team

The Western Australian Agricultural Research Collaboration (WAARC) is a new WA state initiative committed to advancing agricultural research, innovation and capacity in the state. WAARC has been allocated funding by the Western Australian Government through The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) – $25 million from FY 22/23 to 25/26. This WAARC funding is to be used to leverage and co-fund new funding and projects into the state. The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD), Grower Group Alliance, CSIRO and the three public Western Australian Universities- Curtin University, Murdoch University and The University of Western Australia (UWA) and stand as the foundation partners. These entities will enter into a joint venture agreement with the goal of fostering and evolving WAARC into a sustainable, long-term national collaboration. As the Chief Operating Officer, you will play a pivotal role in ensuring the smooth and effective functioning of WAARC. You will oversee a wide range of operational activities, from managing governance and finance to supporting the delivery and oversight of research projects and fostering a collaborative environment. Your expertise will directly contribute to the success of our research initiatives and the growth of the Collaboration.

About the opportunity

As the appointee you will, under broad direction, work with the Director to develop policies, budgets, governance frameworks, fulfil contracting requirements and other key deliverables that will ensure the WAARC’s effective and efficient functioning.

You will also be responsible for ensuring compliance with all fiscal, statutory, policy, and legal requirements of the Collaboration and its responsibility to the Western Australian Government. The role is preferably Perth-based but a rural or regional location within Western Australia is negotiable. Regular trips to Perth for meetings will be required. The role is preferably a 1.0 full time equivalent position, but this is negotiable.

About you

To be considered for this opportunity, you will demonstrate:

  • Relevant tertiary qualifications or demonstrated equivalent experience.
  • Proven extensive experience in operations management, preferably in a research or agricultural setting.
  • Proven extensive experience in planning, budgeting, financial control, resource allocation, and reporting.
  • Excellent planning and organisational skills with the demonstrated ability to manage a wide range of responsibilities, set priorities, and meet deadlines.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop new systems and adapt to a dynamic environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal, written and verbal communication skills with demonstrated ability to manage key relationships with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Ability to work independently, show initiative, problem solve, and work productively in a team environment.
  • Proficiency in a range of computing skills including word processing, spreadsheets, and databases.

About your application

Full details of the position's responsibilities and the selection criteria are outlined in the position description: Download File P2461P~1.DOC (2).pdf.

You are required to address the selection criteria in your submission in a separate document (max. 3 pages). For information to assist you with compiling statements to answer the selection criteria, please visit Addressing the selection criteria.

You may also submit an additional statement (1 page max) outlining any personal circumstances which should be considered when assessing your application. Applicants who have experienced periods of academic/professional interruption or other relevant events can include a description of achievements relative to opportunity in this statement.

Closing date: 11:55 PM AWST on Thursday, 14 March 2024.

To learn more about this opportunity, please contact Kelly Pearce at

This position is only open to applicants with relevant rights to work in Australia.

Application Details: Please apply online via the Apply Now button.

Our commitment to inclusion and diversity

UWA is committed to a diverse workforce and an equitable and inclusive workplace. We celebrate difference and believe diversity is fundamental to achieving our goals as a globally recognised Top 100 educational and research institution. We are committed to creating a safe work environment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, women, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, the LGBTIQA+ community and people living with disability.

  • We have a globally competitive, gender neutral parental leave policy with 26 weeks paid leave after 12 months service and 36 weeks after 5 years.
  • We have on-campus childcare facilities for children aged 6 weeks to kindy.
  • We facilitate flexible working, with part-time and job-sharing arrangements considered.
  • We have an ongoing partnership with Pride in Diversity and were recently awarded a Bronze Employer status for LGBTIQA+ inclusion.
  • We have Athena SWAN Bronze accreditation and actively work to improve gender equity.

Should you have any queries relating to your application, please contact the individual named in the advertisement. Alternatively, contact the Talent team at with details of your query. To enable a quick response, please include the 6-digit job reference number and a member of the team will respond to your enquiry.

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