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Chief Operations Officer

23 September 2019

UWC Dilijan 

TITLE:  Chief Operations Officer
LOCATION:   Dilijan, Armenia
TERM:   Full-time

Job description

The Chief Operations Officer is a key member of the College Leadership Team of UWC Dilijan with responsibility for finance, administration and operations. As such, he/she must share the vision and ethos of the school and strive at all times to ensure that everyone working for the school in any financial or operational capacity maintains the values of the school in all dealings with other staff, students, members of the public, and the wider community in Dilijan and Armenia.
While at present the job is focused on UWC Dilijan, as the College continues to develop this role may involve connected initiatives such as the Dilijan Educational Cluster. 
S/he will explore new opportunities for partnerships and commercial opportunities to create new sources of revenue for the College.

Job responsibilities

  • The Chief Operations Officer reports to the Head of College.
  • The Chief Operations Officer is responsible for finance, administration, operations, legal and IT services, including financial and operational planning, budgeting, reporting, performance monitoring and risk management.
  • He/she is a member of the CLT and, as such, has involvement in managerial decisions relating to the school and will be the principal source of information for the Head of College and CLT about the statutory, regulatory, financial and operational requirements of the school.
  • Primary responsibilities include ensuring statutory compliance, managing books, records and the accounting, legal, IT and operational staff of the school, including such operations as may from time to time be outsourced, and ensuring the operational efficiency and safety of all activities on the campus.
  • The Chief Operations Officer will be responsible for preparation of reports and accounts in accordance with such standards as shall be prescribed by the Board of Governors and the prevailing regulations in Armenia.

Finance and Accounting

  • Advises the Head of College and the CLT on all financial matters, including drawing attention to changes in legislation that may materially affect the running of the school.
  • The Chief Operations Officer supervises the Chief Accountant’s day-to-day activities.
  • Manages the financial systems of the school to ensure the integrity of financial data and reporting as well as adherence to best financial practices in accordance with the accounting standards as required.
  • Fully utilizes the accounting system for monthly closing and financial reporting on a timely basis in accordance with the laws of Armenia ensuring that budget holders have updated information.
  • Participates in the evaluation of financial need for scholarship students and keeps proper records of all such scholarships to maintain budgetary integrity.
  • Works closely with the Head of College to facilitate the budgeting process for the school, ensuring input from all interested parties.
  • Tracks financial performance against budget and provides variance and trend analysis, along with other management reports, including management accounts, as per the reporting schedule required by the Head of College and the Board of Governors.
  • Provides leadership in developing benchmarks, both from internal and external sources, for management and evaluation purposes.
  • Creates, maintains and utilizes the fixed assets register and provides the necessary support and analysis for capital expenditure and depreciation.
  • Manages fee collection and bill payment functions to optimize cash flow and working capital.
  • With the Chief Accountant, sets up and manages payroll systems and ensures that terms are reviewed and implemented as per contracts. Ensures all statutory and regulatory compliances are met, especially over tax remittances.
  • Implements internal controls to comply with both internal and external audit requirements.
  • Actively investigates the fees of comparable and competitor schools nationally and internationally and advises the Head of College and through him/her the Board of Governors of the appropriate and necessary fee structure and scholarship provision.
  • Carries out a regular review of insurable risks and maintains adequate insurance coverage.
  • Identifies and sets up processes to obtain and manage fiscal exemptions in accordance with the statutory provisions approved by the government of Armenia.
  • Ensures the safekeeping of contractual and other legal documents and records including historic financial and other documents needed for internal and external audit as required by prevailing regulations.
  • The Chief Operations Officer liaises with the UWC International Office and will be part of different groups and task-forces as needed as needed.
  • Is expected to operate the departments reporting to him/her as part of Dilijan International School of Armenia (UWC Dilijan), which is part of the larger network of the RVVZ Foundation. He/she will be expected to maintain professional and collaborative working relationships with other members of the school and the RVVZ, to establish reliable and consistent internal audit procedures and to comply with all audit requirements.

Operations and IT

  • Works with the Facilities Manager to negotiate terms and conditions of all contracts, follows up and report to the Head of College on procurement of goods and services.
  • Gives general guidance to the Facilities Manager, sets up and puts in place processes for the following:
    • Ensuring that the catering on campus is fit for purpose with good dietary and financial value.
    • Ensuring that security on campus is of the highest quality to ensure the safety of all personnel and property.
    • Establishing and maintaining housekeeping, landscaping and maintenance functions sufficient to the efficient operation of the school and to an appropriate high standard.
    • Ensuring that transport facilities are fit for purpose, including the maintenance and safety of all vehicles, the qualifications of all drivers, and the timing and provision of such transport as shall from time to time be needed for expeditions and the conveyance of students and staff.
    • Advises the Head of College of any operational matters that may give rise to significant or​​​​​ unbudgeted expenditure at the earliest possible opportunity.
  • Gives general guidance to the IT Manager, sets up and puts in place processes for the following:
    • Ensuring that IT security is ensured and maintained at the appropriate standard.
    • Ensuring that all users have access to IT equipment, infrastructure and software that meet their needs.


  • Actively engages with the other CLT members in developing policies and procedures for the reporting departments.
  • Under the direction of the Head of College and in consultation with other relevant members of the school, contributes to the development and implementation of plans and processes that are important to the goals of the school and which are consistent with the guidance provided by the Head of College.
  • Ensures that the document flow is put in place and maintained appropriately.
  • Ensures that the college complies with its own Charter, applicable legislation, internal policies and procedures, including international standards for authorization (International Baccalaureate) and accreditation (Council of International Schools)
  • Makes business continuity and contingency plans to limit risks and ensure preparedness for foreseeable crisis.

Required qualifications and skills

  • Minimum 10 years of experience in operations, finance and administrative management, preferably in an international setting.
  • Strong management and leadership skills, including the ability to work in a multicultural environment.
  • Proficiency in English, Armenian and/or Russian.
  • Ability to work with partners across the RVVZ ecosystem, the UWC movement and IB schools worldwide.
  • Understanding of and sympathy with residential education
  • ACCA, CFA qualifications will be an advantage
  • Excellent interpersonal and team working skills

Application Procedure

Being an intentionally diverse community, UWC Dilijan college welcomes applications from
qualified candidates from all cultural and educational backgrounds. All applications have to be
submitted electronically via: before midnight on October 10th (UTC +4).
Please specify the title of job "Chief Operations Officer" in the subject line. All attached
documentation should be sent as a single PDF file of less than 4 MB.
Keeping children safe is everyone’s responsibility at UWCD. In keeping with the mission and
values of the UWC movement, we believe that every child and young person, regardless of age,
has at all times and in all situations a right to feel safe and protected. We are committed to
safeguarding processes which include protecting students from abuse and neglect, preventing risk of harm to children’s health or development, and ensuring children grow up with the provision of safe and supportive care.
An application for a position implies explicit consent to undergo thorough background checks
and screening. Successful candidates will be subject to background checks, including reference
requests from previous employees as well as a security check. 

About UWC Dilijan

One of the 18 United World Colleges, UWC Dilijan is an intentionally diverse international
boarding school in Armenia. It first opened its doors in August 2014 and now has 228 students
(16 to 18-year-old) from 88 countries studying the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma.