Administrator, Department of Communication Studies
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Salary: 54059.20 - 91977.60
Internal Number: 347689
The Assistant to the Chair has primary responsibility for managing the day-to-day and long-term operations of the Department of Communication Studies. Reporting to the Department Chair, this position requires a high level of skill and experience, with a broad range of competencies, to play a key role in implementing the department’s strategic plan and advancing the academic, professional, and community missions of the department. The position provides support to the Chair and members of the department, working strategically to align the department’s budget, human resources, curriculum management, research-related activities, facilities, technology, data systems, and other operational areas, while ensuring compliance with collegiate and University policy and regulations. This position works collaboratively with collegiate administration (i.e. finance, HR, curriculum, graduate and undergraduate programs, development, etc.) and is responsible for cultivating and maintaining strong and effective relationships with faculty, staff, students, visiting scholars, and other key constituents both within and outside the University.
Strategic Planning and Operational Management (25%)
Partner with the chair/director on issues of strategic planning, including setting priorities to best achieve the research, teaching, service, and administrative goals of the department. Support the development of new initiatives and realignment of existing programs through oversight and management of processes and systems. On behalf of the Chair, draft and disseminate correspondence (proposals, memoranda, operating procedures, etc.), and develop and implement department policy. Serve as a resource for the Chair and the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) in interpreting and implementing University policies regarding graduate students; participate in developing department-level policies and procedures regarding graduate students. Advise the Chair and DGS on financial packages offered to graduate students (incoming and/or continuing).
Serve as Chief of Staff, coordinating all aspects of department management. Anticipate, plan, and manage the daily and strategic administrative operations of the department; investigate and resolve administrative problems. Serve as first point-of-contact for addressing issues related to personnel, facilities and budget. Determine, enact, and manage the formation of operational/ administrative projects as needed. Manage data collection for responding to internal and external surveys. Provide leadership for staff and foster a professional, positive, team-oriented working environment in the department. Work with the Chair (and other members of the department) to develop external communication priorities, strategies, and messages. Supervise and monitor department communication (print, web, and social media).
Build collaborative relationships, while serving as the unit liaison on behalf of chair/director, faculty, staff, and students with CLA, other University and outside entities. Work with chair/director and faculty to establish and maintain important external relationships with professional, academic and community partners. Coordinate data collection for responding to internal and external surveys. Work with the chair/director to develop external communication strategies, priorities and messages.
Financial Planning and Grants Management (20%)
Advise and Assist Char/Director on Fiscal Issues related to funding, budget priorities, operational funding, payroll, faculty research and retention, curriculum management, UMN Foundation (UMF) accounts, and sponsored funds. Manage development of annual budget and budget proposals/ requests, in conjunction with Chair and senior accountant. strategic planning and annual budget. Direct ongoing budget activities through coordinated effort with the College, the University Foundation (UMF), the Office of Research Administration and Technology and other campus units. Advise chair/director on the budget process. Monitor monthly and/or quarterly reports for consistency in spending plans. Review and sign off on bi-weekly payroll abstract. Research and resolve payroll issues.
Coordinate the development of annual operation budget with chair/director, Executive Committee, and senior accountant, as appropriate.
Coordinate unit development, donor relations, and outreach activities with the collegiate Office of Institutional Advancement, UMF and University Relations. Identify topics with potential for regional and national media outreach. Coordinate production of annual development/alumni magazine. Support alumni outreach. Oversee events that involve alumni and donors. Manage projections, spending plans and scholarship/fellowship awards.
Work with fiscal team on all the above.
Serve as curriculum manager. Work with Chair, DIrector of Undergraduate Studies (DUS), and Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) to manage curriculum planning and course scheduling for the department. Ensure course offerings align with classroom scheduling policies, instructional budget parameters, faculty and staff course-load policies, enrollment targets and course buy-outs. Analyze detailed information on instructional costs, enrollments, and course scheduling in order to recommend efficient modifications to curricular plans (class size, etc.).
Manage selection of graduate instructors and adjunct instructors in conjunction with Chair, DUS, and DGS. Manage and enact posting and hiring or affiliate instructional professionals, including activities associated with their hire. Assist Director of Teaching Assistants (TA) with assignments each semester.
Plan annual curriculum in consultation with chair/director, DUS and DGS in accordance with classroom scheduling policies. Prepare and recommend undergraduate and graduate curricular offerings to the unit’s Curriculum Committee. Collaborate with faculty on course development and long-term curriculum development. Manage ECAS/ECS course entry. Track course releases. Identify instructional funding needs and ensure funding is efficiently spent. Coordinate Council of Liberal Education (CLE) and Student Learning Outcomes (SLO), track activities and update processes.
Collect and analyze detailed course scheduling, enrollment and instructional cost reports so that curriculum committees in the unit can most efficiently modify curricular plans.
Using a complex formula of: course enrollment, budgetary resources and staffing resources, assign all teaching assistants and instructors for the academic year and summer session. Manage Intersections entry for graduate assistantships and all graduate payroll processing.
Manage/oversee Teaching Assistant Training and Intersections entry for graduate assistantships. Mentor and coach graduate instructors and teaching assistants. Mediate employment related disputes.
Human Resource Management and Supervision (20%)
Ensure the smooth and efficient operation of the department in all staff functions. Assume full supervisory authority for the office and advising staff, including developing job descriptions and performance standards, managing searches, hiring, orienting, training, assigning,monitoring, and adjusting workload, conducting annual appraisals, professional development, problem-solving, disciplining, terminating, and settling grievances. Approve all overtime compensation.
Serve as department contact for concerns of all employee groups (P&A, civil service, labor represented, faculty, graduate and undergraduate personnel), including those involving employee benefits and human resources policies and/or procedures. Advise the Chair of staffing needs and necessary personnel actions. Ensure secure maintenance of department personnel files, and that all HR processes and documentation are completed for the department. Interpret, refine develop, and implement department policies and procedures.
Serve as the unit contact for civil service, labor represented, P&A, graduate and undergraduate personnel. Supervise office staff. Includes full supervisory authority for developing job descriptions and performance standards; coordinating searches; hiring; training; orienting; assigning, monitoring and adjusting workloads; problem-solving; disciplining; terminating and settling grievances.
Serve as the primary unit expert for chair/director, faculty and staff on University and College policies and procedures involving promotion and tenure; award dossiers; faculty and staff searches; sabbaticals; single semester leaves; EOAA, FMLA; annual review of probationary faculty; annual report of outside professional activities and business procedures. Interpret, develop and implement unit policies and procedures. Manage tracking of all leaves and reporting to CLA of faculty searches, leaves, terminations, retirements, and other types of employment-related processes, including serving as Hiring Authority. Manage and/or construct dossiers for faculty hiring, promotions and tenure, and departmental award nominations (Morse-Alumni, McKnight, Regents, etc.). Coordinate all necessary immigration processes and forms related to international visitors, employees, faculty and staff.
Prepare and process Visa applications and extensions for international employees and graduate students.
Office Management (15%)
Manage all aspects of daily department operations, including policy and procedure development and implementation. Determine and allocate resources by monitoring staff duties and adjusting workloads as needed. Develop annual calendar, set deadlines and priorities. Oversee the updating of department information and data systems. Initiate, identify and manage projects.
Implement acquisition and allocation of capital equipment. Review and approve computer and equipment purchases, involving both non-sponsored and sponsored accounts (ensuring compliance with numerous regulations, both internal and external to the University). Ensure equipment is maintained and inventoried. Coordinate computer inventory and replacement program.
Coordinate space planning, allocation, and reporting. Work with facilities on emergency plans. Oversee physical changes and additions to department facilities.
Ensure department events involving faculty, students, alumni, donors and/or the broader community are welcoming for all attendees. Oversee event logistics and details; coordinate as needed with key faculty and staff assigned to support events (co-sponsored or otherwise), and with internal (to the University) and external suppliers.
Develop, organize and supervise unit communication (web, social media and print). Monitor and update unit web presence.
Bachelor's degree and at least four (4) years of relevant work experience in an academic unit in a higher education setting; or a combination of higher-education and relevant administrative work experience in a higher education setting totaling eight (8) years. Must include two (2) years of supervisory experience.
Experience with at least two of the following: academic searches, promotion and tenure, curriculum management, graduate programs, accounting/budget management, or human resources.
Computer experience with word processing, spreadsheets, and database software; and online reporting systems.
Project management experience.
Administrative experience at the University of Minnesota or in higher education setting providing assistance to the Department Chair or Director of an academic department.
Masters Degree or advanced training in business, human relations or a related field.
Ability to make sound decisions, set priorities and work in a fast-paced environment with deadlines and interruptions.
Successful candidate must be creative and attentive to business and staff needs, perform at a high level of discretion, integrity and confidentiality.
Administrative experience in human resources and payroll.
Demonstrated application of sound business principals.
Successful experience with course scheduling, academic searches and promotion and tenure processes.
Experience with PeopleSoft, EFS, CCS and ECAS.
Proven ability to develop timelines, implement innovative business strategies, identify problems and solutions and conduct systematic processes reviews and improvements.
Experience and/or commitment to working with diverse groups of people.
Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with diverse constituencies.
Demonstrated ability to take initiative and work independently.
The University of Minnesota, founded in the belief that all people are enriched by understanding, is dedicated to the advancement of learning and the search for truth; to the sharing of this knowledge through education for a diverse community; and to the application of this knowledge to benefit the people of the state, the nation, and the world.