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Head of Commercial Operations - Student Union

Location: York
Approx. Salary: c£35k+ package

The University of York Students’ Union (YUSU) is the representative body for the full diversity of 18,000+ students registered at the University of York. Just over 50 years old and growing rapidly, the students’ union provides a wide range of charitable and trading services and activities designed to improve students’ lives, create student employment opportunities, and support them to make the most of their time at York. As one of the largest registered charities in North Yorkshire, we aim to be amongst the best students’ unions in the UK. Rapid growth over the last five years has seen our turnover approach £5.5m p.a., our student participation increase and our estate grow. Our employee population approaches 200 staff, creating employment opportunities for around 150 part-time student staff across all areas of our operation. YUSU has been through a real period of change driven by our previous strategic plan, and this ability to adapt quickly is now bringing us through the current pandemic. We believe we were significantly ahead of the curve in responding creatively to the dramatic changes in the way we were able to run our venues and wider student services; we successfully adjusted a number of venues to ensure they could continue to operate, reduced our core overheads by closing some venues that were less agile and secured funding to open new venues, generate income and continue to provide great facilities for students. Year on year we retained just over 60% of sales, despite the devastating effects and disruption of the global crisis. We are now developing our next strategic plan and thinking creatively with our students, funders, staff and wider stakeholders about what our future priorities should be and where our new opportunities lay, particularly in a ‘post covid world’. We are very conscious of the need to ensure high-quality services that enhance student life, but also recognise that the need to diversify income opportunities is key to avoid excessive dependency on licensed activity. We think that strong organisational credibility, a creative and entrepreneurial spirit and students’ expectations and hunger for great student life can drive further growth in existing and new areas as we develop new partnerships and collaborations, secure institutional investment into student services and build relationships on and off campus.

To support the Director of Commercial Operations in the service delivery in YUSU operational venues to a student body at a consistently high standard. To develop the commercial team to ensure YUSU get maximum return and student impact from commercial operations and physical resources. To ensure the services are delivered to a high standard and in a professional and safe manner. Main Duties and Responsibilities • To ensure excellent customer service to agreed standard operating procedures in all union venues and operations. • To ensure the services are operated in a safe and secure manner and that the safety of customers and staff if given the upmost priority. • To ensure operations are delivered in a sustainable manner in line with Union policies and that the supply chain and operational practices follow ethical best practice models. • To introduce manage and amend processes that ensure the profitability of the commercial services and that ensure transactions and stock are secure and properly audited. • To lead the team in professionally budgeting and forecasting the income and use of the resources and to ensure that procurement and staffing levels are controlled to agreed ratios that reflect the expected levels of business. • To ensure that the workforce is trained commensurate to their work activity and that all staff receive the correct direction in due diligence and safety matters. To ensure compliance with the principles of the Licencing act, the Health and Safety at work act and the Food Safety act. • To lead the recruitment training and development of all levels of the Commercial Operations team and ensure staff receive the correct training and coaching to complete their jobs effectively. • To use insight to guide development decisions and ensure that student have a part in the development of our commercial services and offering. To work effectively with student clubs and societies and engage with their activity and objectives. • To support the delivery of events and ensure we have a commercial offer which is suited to the objectives and Profile of Union events and campaigns. To develop and maintain a networking relationship with Commercial Lead.

A truly great role for someone who has worked in Commercial Operations in Retail & Hospitality, but craves more freedom to express themselves and create better experiences for different Customers and tastes , across independent original Brands , all underpinned by creating a great Student experience, and making the SU a great place to work and develop too.

Date Posted: 13 January 2021

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