Project Manager (StARS+ Programme) – Academic Services – 98081 – Grade 8

Fixed-term Full-time Permanent University of Birmingham in Education and Training Email Job
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Job Description

Position Details

Department of Academic Service

Location: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham UK

Full time starting salary is normally in the range £41,526 to £49,553, with potential progression once in post to £55,750

Grade 8

Full Time

Please note, there are 3 x positions available including permanent contracts and FTC until July 2024.

Closing date – 17th September 2021

Please note, we reserve the right to close the advert should be receive a large volume of applications.

There is a requirement for flexible working on campus and at home.

Job summary

StARS (Student Administration Refresh and Simplification) is a University-wide programme to simplify, standardise and improve our student administration services, enabled by a replacement and upgrade of our student record system. Its vision is to deliver a better experience for students, academics and Professional Services staff; and enables a fundamental shift towards a more flexible set of capabilities and services that are fit for the future.

Reporting to the Programme Manager the StARS programme is looking to recruit a Project Manager to join the Programme’s Team. The post holder will lead, develop and manage the development of a range of service releases as part of the StARS Programme. In conjunction with senior colleagues, the Project Manager will also play a role in engagement, development, and implementation of the project as a whole. The postholder will have  direct line-management of the Project Lead.

This post is an exciting opportunity for career advancement.  Through the role, the successful candidate will develop a thorough understanding of the University’s student administrative services and systems and contribute towards a truly transformational change programme.

We particularly welcome applications from candidates with experience of student administration within a HE context.  If you have the experience but are not sure if the role is for you, please drop us a line at (, and someone from the team will be in touch.

The StARS Programme will complete the delivery of all project service releases by the summer 2024.

Main duties

Project Management

The Project Manager is responsible for delivering and/or quality assuring one of the StARS projects as defined and agreed by the Programme Manager and Programme Director.  To successfully deliver the full implementation of the StARS project from initiation to deployment including:

•    To work collaboratively with the Project Lead, other Project Managers/Leads to develop detailed plans such as, defining project tasks and resource requirements, along with scheduling timelines and deadlines;

•    To work closely with the Project Sponsor (Project Board Chair) and the Project Lead to develop structures for the effective management and administration of the implementation of the StARS programme across the University (e.g. identification, solution, costing, milestones, and delivery);

•    To manage all project deliverables and service releases, to ensure the overall programme is aligned to and directly supports the successful implementation of the StARS programme;

•    To develop and maintain a detailed project plan, and to regularly report on progress at project team meetings, Programme management meetings, project board meetings etc;

•    To develop and maintain a detailed risk register, and to regularly report on risks and exceptions which may affect the project;

Consulting Others

•    Within Academic Services and the Colleges, to provide day-to-day professional services leadership to implement the StARS programme, working with a wide variety of internal stakeholders across the University to meet project goals, adhering to their responsibilities and project milestones;

•    To provide expert advice and guidance to all colleagues on implementation and related issues;

•    To raise awareness of, and increase engagement with, activity to implement the StARS programme across the institution;

•    Any other duties as specified by the Programme Manager.

Required Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications, Experience 

The post-holder must possess and be able to demonstrate:
•    Experience of working in Higher Education;

•    Project Management experience and a consequent understanding of deliverables, deadlines, and risk management;

•    Experience of different planning methods and approaches (work breakdown structures, critical paths, sprint planning and estimating);

•    Experience in engaging, and collaborating, with external stakeholders;

•    Experience of working in complex organisations and successfully working across matrix management structures;

•    Ability to be responsive and adapt to rapidly changing circumstances, whilst maintaining delivery of core goals and priorities;

•    Ability to manage multiple, concurrent, complex projects/programmes of work;

•    Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to achieve buy-in across a spectrum of stakeholders, adapting approaches to meet the different needs of Academic Services Divisions and Colleges;

•    Credibility and gravitas to influence a range of colleagues across the University;

•    Ability to persuade and negotiate effectively with all stakeholders;

•    Ability to write reports and papers for a range of audiences including the University Executive Board, on behalf of the Programme Manager and Programme Director;

•    Understanding of the student lifecycle (i.e. admission; registration; learning; assessment; progression; award; graduation), and an ability to grasp quickly the challenges presented to these stakeholders by the StARS programme;

•    Experience of working with academic colleagues in a Higher Education setting or similar;

•    Self-starting ability to research and master quickly the activity of a service or academic function and, with appropriate consultation and reflection, identify challenges and offer solutions;

•    High level of self-motivation and personal accountability with ability to plan and deliver goals to deadlines under pressure;

•    Ability to design and maintain operational processes which support the ongoing delivery of complex programmes.


•    Formal training in project management techniques and methodology, particularly PRINCE2 or APMP accreditation, is highly desirable.

•    Training and experience of Agile methodologies is highly desirable.

•    Please note that training can be provided should the successful candidate have the necessary experience but not the formal qualification.
Valuing excellence, sustaining investment 

We value diversity and inclusion at the University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community and are open to discussions around all forms of flexible working. 

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