Academy Operations Planning Specialist

Department: Repair Sector Services
Salary details: Circa £54,200 negotiable + excellent benefits package | 12-month FTC
Published date: 26-Jul-2023

Academy Operations Planning Specialist | Circa £54,200 negotiable + excellent benefits | 12-month FTC | Thatcham Hybrid

Would you like to work for a company that makes a real difference in the automotive industry? The future of collision repair is evolving and as the technologies used in automotive body repair advance, we play an industry leading role in training the automotive repair and insurance industries. Our state-of-the-art automotive training academy is uniquely positioned to provide training and continuous professional development for both apprentices at the start of their career, or technicians and engineers looking to update their skills. 
To support our aspirations for continuous improvement, we are looking for an experienced Operational Planning Specialist with an innovative approach to process improvement, to join our Training Academy on a full time, fixed-term contract for 12 months. Reporting to the Head of Repair Sector Services, you’ll develop plans and strategies to maximise the efficient operational running of the Academy. You’ll observe the as-is and work closely with the commercial team to identify what investments or reductions provide assurance of maximising margins, whilst retaining the highest quality of education services.
  What will you be doing?
  • Provide expert and detailed analysis on capacity that considers people, space, equipment and other key operational resources identifying opportunities for process improvement and operational efficiency.
  • Oversee and update planning and scheduling activities to optimise effectiveness and maximise the operations growth prospects.
  • Develop a robust business case for future needs including investment and divestment to maximise profitability from training operations over the course of 3 to 10 years.
  • Work with product and commercial teams to identify future opportunities and develop strategies to ensure these can be realised.
  • Support the academy operations team to improve understanding and transparency of the true resource requirements for each course including preparation, delivery, marking, change over and quality assurance, identifying where efficiencies could be made.
  • Produce a robust optimised schedule of future courses that maximises our facility/capacity/utilisation showing the potential profitability of an efficient operation.
  • Work with the product and business systems teams to identify optimised planning solutions for our blended training provision.

Skills & experience that will set you up for success in this role

  • Demonstrable experience of developing complex delivery plans for services that meet customer requirements and operational efficiencies.
  • Managing and interrogating financial and operational data to maximise cost efficiency and assure service robustness.
  • Lean, six sigma or other business efficiency tools
  • Proven experience pro-actively managing multiple deadlines and resources within a challenging project environment.
  • Ability to communicate and collaborate effectively with different audiences, such as staff, suppliers, senior leaders, and others in pursuit of common goals.
  • Deep understanding of business processes and workflows
  • The ability to understand operational-level goals and how they align with strategic goals.
  • Familiar with resource requirements, operational budgets, and hiring plans.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office, with aptitude to learn new software and systems.

About you

You are assertive, self-reliant and responsible for your own work. You’re a logical thinker with excellent analytical and problem-solving skills. Your previous experience in complex operational planning has developed your commercial understanding which enables you to consider ‘the bigger picture’. You take time to listen to and understand others with the confidence to challenge, whilst bringing your own ideas and perspectives to the table. You work flexibly to accommodate peak project demands and can work independently, prioritising a diverse workload.   Perks & Benefits

Salary - Circa £54,200 negotiable, dependent on skills & experience.

  • 10% non-contributory pension
  • 29 days holiday (inclusive of Christmas shutdown) + public holidays
  • Group Life Assurance (equal to 3 x basic salary)
  • Group Income Protection (after 2 years’ service)
  • Salary Sacrifice schemes (cycle to work & tech scheme)
  • Money Health Financial Wellbeing Platform
  • Health Cash Plan (cash back on eligible medical treatments)
  • Discounted gym membership
  • Sports & Social club
  • Payroll charitable giving

When we work

Our standard working hours are 8:30 - 16:30 Monday - Thursday, 8:30 - 15:45 Fridays

How we work

Our blended working approach means you’ll spend time working from our head office in Thatcham and from home should you wish to.

What we do

At the cutting edge of automotive research in the UK, Thatcham Research has a unique role in shaping the design of new vehicles and influencing ever higher standards of safety, security and repair.

With an on-site Crash Laboratory, Repair Technology Centre, Training Academy and Crime Lab, our research expertise is driving some of the very latest automotive developments in technology, materials and standards in this fast moving and highly technical industry. Our active safety track site is one of the leading accredited Euro NCAP testing facilities, trialling and assessing the very latest developments in vehicle safety and assistance technologies. 

Our Values

As an organisation that believes a strong set of Values are key to our organisational success and a sense of belonging for all colleagues, we ask that you understand, represent and apply our Values of Fearless, Inquisitive, Resourceful, Supportive and Trusted and demonstrate these Values throughout the recruitment process.

We are proud members of the Automotive 30% Club, a voluntary network of CEOs with a shared objective of achieving a better gender balance within the automotive industry.

Thatcham Research is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applicants from all sections of the community. We are committed to ensuring we have a fair and inclusive recruitment process.

Please let us know if you require any reasonable adjustments to be made at any point during your recruitment journey.

All applicants must have Right to Work in the UK.