Are you enthusiastic about emerging technologies that foster advancements in teaching, learning, and research? Do you have experience leading teams that deliver advanced media production and web development services? Northwestern IT, based in the heart of Evanston, is looking for a creative and experienced leader who will challenge the status quo and further the University’s ability to deliver innovative technology solutions that support strategic objectives. This position is a great opportunity to engage with technology leaders, faculty, students, and staff members from across the University in leading innovative projects that enhance the student experience and further research initiatives. The ideal candidate will have experience leading a team of creative IT and media professionals, excellent interpersonal and communication skills, and a proven track record in recruiting, motivating, and developing a high-performing team. Familiarity with delivering IT services in higher education and/or a focus on advanced media and web application development is a plus! In addition to joining a creative and collaborative team, Northwestern employees take advantage of excellent healthcare and retirement benefits, as well as generous paid time off. If you feel this could be a great career match, please apply today!
The Director leads a creative team of media and information technology specialists who deliver a portfolio of services that are specifically designed to further research initiatives, enhance online learning, improve the student experience, and support institutional strategic objectives. An essential element of this role is leading innovation in both the application of technology, production of media, and design of learning spaces to enhance the teaching, learning and research mission of the University. The director will develop and maintain strong working relationships with business and technology leaders across the schools and units to identify priorities for enhancing the existing service portfolio and ensure service offerings align with emerging requirements and industry best practice.
Provide vision and strategic leadership to ensure that the existing portfolio of services continues to evolve and align with University priorities.
Provide overall direction for day-to-day operations that includes leadership of capital projects and University strategic initiatives.
Understand the diverse requirements of the University academic community and industry best practices as they relate to the delivery of innovative technologies, audio/visual systems integration, learning space design, media production, and web and application development.
In close coordination with technology leaders in the schools, plan for improved service points on the Evanston and Chicago campuses.
Engage in IT strategic planning and policy development where appropriate.
Understand the diverse requirements of the University community and emerging technology trends with the goal of delivering professional quality services and support for faculty, students, and staff.
Guide the Northwestern community in the development, application and adoption of novel technologies that support the University’s strategic priorities.
Lead and develop managers and team leads, who have responsibility for the delivery of enterprise-level services that that are specifically designed to further research initiatives, enhance online learning, improve the student experience, and support institutional strategic objectives.
Develop a culture of service excellence and a customer-focused, collaborative support team.
Facilitate continual service improvements that increase efficiencies, decrease the cost of delivery and improve customer satisfaction.
As needed, advise managers and team leads on appropriate policies and procedures for effectively managing employees.
Responsible for a budget of $3.1M, which includes coordinating with Procurement and Payment Services on license renewal, equipment purchases and contract negotiations.
Collaboration and Innovation
Collaborate with faculty, students, staff, researchers and technology partners on the delivery of digital media innovation and design services. Actively seek opportunities for partnership with colleagues across the University in the development and application of novel technologies.
Lead the University community in the exploration and assessment of new and emerging technologies, while examining how those technologies might further enhance the learning, teaching and research experience.
Develop and maintain strong working relationships with technology leaders and senior administrators across the schools and departments to identify potential opportunities to enhance the existing service portfolio and partner in the delivery of IT support.
Participate in IT governance planning committees with responsibility for initiating and leading committee discussions on technology innovation in the area of digital media, learning space design, and related IT services.
Participate in relevant professional organizations, including the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA), and represent the University at appropriate national and international forums.
Serve as a catalyst for technology innovation at Northwestern University.
Deliver reliable, consistent, high-quality IT services with the goal of improving the quality of the customer experience. Ensure that the portfolio of services continues to evolve and align with University strategic priorities.
Deliver professional quality services and support that adhere to IT service management best practices (e.g., service requests, incident management, knowledge management, project management, and change management).
Routinely assess and report on customer satisfaction and utilization of services, as it informs priorities for the enhancement of existing services and development of new services.
Identify opportunities to improve the customer experience by reducing the number of unplanned outages and service disruptions.
Develop standard processes for service request and invoicing. Ensure these practices are communicated and adopted consistently by staff members.
Establish and maintain an appropriate network of professional contacts with counterparts in peer institutions.
Represent Northwestern IT on relevant professional organizations and participate in national groups (e.g., Educause, CCUMC) to share experiences, learn best practices, and influence innovation.
Perform other duties as required and directed.
Bachelor’s degree in computer science, media arts and technology, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
Ten years of experience in higher education or corporate environment in Information Technology.
Seven years of management experience, leading teams who deliver web and application development, video production, audio/visual systems design and integration, UI/UX design services, and related technologies.
Minimum Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities.)
A strong background in delivering and managing IT services and support at an enterprise level.
A proven track record of managing resources to ensure support staff have the capacity and skills necessary to deliver professional quality services.
A solid understanding of web publishing platforms, audio/visual systems, video production and editing technologies, and cloud application development, as it relates to leading diverse, complex and innovative projects that directly support University strategic priorities.
An understanding of evolving academic and research technology requirements and recognition of the need to support both mainstream services and emergent technologies that are relevant, or potentially relevant to academia.
An appreciation of the importance of maintaining a balance between operational excellence and supporting innovation in research, teaching and learning, and administration.
Proven track record in recruiting, directing, motivating and guiding the development of a team of IT support professionals.
A strong customer service focus.
Excellent communication and presentation skills; written and verbal skills; analytical skills; strong interpersonal skills. Ability to explain complex technology in a manner that is understandable to a non-technical person.
Preferred Qualifications: (Education and experience)
Master’s degree in computer science, media arts and technology, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
Delivery of an integrated portfolio of IT and media services that includes experience leading research projects that have received national funding.
Preferred Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities)
Business Acumen – Possesses business savvy and demonstrates the ability to foster and lead cost-efficient initiatives without sacrificing quality or core values.
Conflict Management – Exhibits an understanding of natural sources of conflict and acts to prevent or soften them.
Faculty Support – Relates effectively to faculty interests and development practices, resulting in successful working relationships on IT development projects for teaching, learning, and research.
Decision Making – Follows and teaches others to follow a process or method for problem-solving.
Dependability – Effectively performs duties and responsibilities; displays attention to detail; supports organizational policies; anticipates demands and pressures of assignments and adjusts accordingly.
Development of Self and Others – Stays current on technical and professional information; identifies methods for improving work procedures or systems; and solicits feedback from customers, peers, and superiors.
Initiative – Exhibits energy and desire to achieve, sets ambitious goals and acts decisively, and takes action that no one has requested to improve or enhance job results and avoid problems.
Negotiation – Finds common ground to accommodate the conflicting needs and wants of different stakeholders.
Visionary Leadership – Inspires confidence and optimism through a clear vision and by personal example; reinforces and emphasizes organizational goals through words and actions.
People Management – Setting clear expectations, reviewing progress, providing feedback and guidance, and holding people accountable.
Political Savvy – Shows awareness of political factors and builds an informal network to create influence.
Planning – Devises and implements clearly defined strategies to achieve business objectives.
Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States.
Internal Number: 35790
About Northwestern University
Northwestern University is a major private research university with 12 academic divisions located on three campuses in Evanston, Chicago, and Education City in Doha, Qatar. We have approximately 2,500 full-time faculty members, 17,000 graduate and undergraduate students, and over 5,700 full and part-time staff. Northwestern University combines innovative teaching and pioneering research in a highly collaborative environment. It provides students and faculty exceptional opportunities for intellectual, personal and professional growth.