Director of Strategy and Business Planning, HEAnet CLG

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We are looking for a Director of Strategy & Business Planning to join the Senior Leadership Team reporting to the Chief Executive Officer.

As Director of Strategy & Business Planning, you will support shaping the company’s future strategic direction and oversee the execution of strategy in terms of business planning and future business development. The HEAnet strategy for 2020-2022 is to provide quality digital solutions to Education and Research in Ireland. Responsibility will also extend to shaping and executing on Group Strategy in partnership with our subsidiary company, EduCampus Services DAC.

About HEAnet

HEAnet is Ireland’s National Research and Education Network, providing Internet connectivity and ICT shared services across all levels of the Irish education system, reaching 1,000,000 end users. We connect learners and researchers across Ireland to education resources and to fellow national educational and research networks in Europe, and the rest of the world.

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Our mission

Our Vision

Enabling Ireland’s digital ambition.

Our Mission

Delivering common, repeatable and shareable solutions for all of education.

Our Funding

Our funding comes from Ireland’s Universities, Institutes of Technology, The Higher Education Authority, The Department of Education and Skills, The Department of Communications Climate Action and Environment, other educational and research organisations in the Rep. of Ireland and the European Commission.

Strategy and business planning

The purpose of the role is to engage with HEAnet Board members, clients, stakeholders, and the HEAnet organisation, in the planning, development and execution of future strategy. This also includes identifying and evaluating new opportunities, developing compelling business cases that secure funding to enhance and expand our shared services portfolio. The role will co-ordinate strategy execution and business planning across the company. It will involve designing annual delivery plans with contributions from key business areas. This role will have responsibility for our Project Management Office (PMO), and our Innovation R&D team.

The role will focus on delivering value and business benefits to our clients and wider education community, ensuring our services portfolio remains relevant and continues to serve the needs of our client members and stakeholders now and into the future.

Business development will extend to identifying new opportunities and innovations that align with company and sectoral strategy. This should also extend to Group strategy considerations. Areas of potential opportunity include digital transformation, cyber security, analytics, open science, and associated research supports.

The HEAnet strategy is an agile strategy which is aligned with the Group strategy mission statement: to provide quality digital solutions on a shared services basis to Education and Research in Ireland. The group strategic themes are leadership & innovation; services strategy; stakeholder engagement; sustainability & value.

Senior leadership

As a member of the Senior Leadership Team, you will participate in regular management meetings and assist the team in delivering on company goals, annual objectives, and achievement of key performance indicators. You will also contribute to the development of our people, wellbeing, and demonstrate leadership through our HEAnet company and Group values.

The role will lead the PMO and Innovation R&D teams. Your leadership style should encourage creating an environment within the function which encourages innovation, agility, critical thinking, and adaptability. Our expectation of our leaders is to mentor, coach and support our people in their roles. We do this by focusing on people’s strengths with emphasis on people management skills and leading through our company values.

Building and maintaining relationships

Work in close collaboration with the:

  • HEAnet CEO, the Senior Leadership Team in HEAnet, and other leaders across HEAnet and EduCampus, on the successful delivery of goals and strategy.
  • Technical Services Director and Schools Network Director to contribute to the technical services development strategy of current portfolio and potential new services.
  • Client Services Director to understand the client and their needs.
  • Head of Finance on financial viability of existing and new services.
  • People Operations Director to ensure that there is a continual focus on development and progression, balanced with the needs of and value to the company.
  • Corporate Services Director to ensure there is full adherence of our company and charity requirements as well as our GDPR obligations.

How we do it

Our company values underpin how we work in HEAnet. We believe in and live by our values and understand they are integral to making HEAnet a great place to work. You will find more about our values and our values video here: Careers in HEAnet – HEAnet

Our core values

Role requirements


The successful candidate  must be able to demonstrate evidence of:

  • Experience in developing, planning, and implementing successful strategies and delivery relating to multiple goals
  • Experience of advising and/or executing on technology and innovative strategies
  • Experience of successful business case design, evidencing strong commercial acumen, with a focus on viability and sustainability of business models
  • Proven experience of strategy execution in terms of organising teams and resources to execute strategic goals
  • A background in technology and/or education/research, with demonstrated effective engagement across a breadth of stakeholders
  • Experience of Business Development, ideally in an education and research technology setting
  • Experience of Business Planning, to effectively manage people, money, and time
  • Strong commercial and financial acumen to support business case/model design/financial viability considerations
  • Experience of developing constructive and collaborative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time, including communicating up to a senior stakeholder level
  • Proven organisational management and people management ability
  • Proven experience of change management in a flexible and agile environment
  • Excellent analytical and organisational skills

We do not need you to have experience in the following areas, but if you did it could be beneficial.

  • Experience of securing funding in a public sector environment
  • Experience of public procurement
  • Consultancy experience in the context of business case and business model design
  • Knowledge of the Irish education and research sector

What you get from us

Company Benefits

  • Annual performance management system
  • Professional education policy
  • Comprehensive group and individual training & development initiatives
  • On-going well-being initiatives
  • Health insurance for employees
  • Defined contribution pension scheme
  • Flexible start/finish times
  • Working from home
  • Employee Assistance Programme (EAP)
  • Tax Saver Ticket scheme
  • Cycle to Work scheme

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Additional important information

At HEAnet we celebrate diversity and understand how important it is to our ongoing success.  We would like to hear from candidates who are great at what they do and whose values align with ours.

If you need any adjustments made to the application or selection process so you can do your best, please let us know.

How to apply

If you believe you have the drive, passion and experience necessary to take on this role, please apply here by 12pm on Monday 14th March 2022.