Associate Director of IT - Platform Services

Post Date

Apr 04, 2024



ZIP/Postal Code

Jul 25, 2024 Insight Global

Job Type



Managerial / Professional

Req #


Pay Rate

$144k - $216k (estimate)

Job Description

The Associate Director of CI Platform Services Infrastructure reports to the Director of Platform Services and is responsible for architecting, managing, and supporting Northwestern University's enterprise infrastructure technology and research computing infrastructure. The Associate Director supervises managers and other direct reports responsible for driving enterprise and research infrastructure technologies. The Associate Director has a range of responsibilities that include strategy, resource management, vendor management, operations, portfolio management, technology roadmaps, and production support. The Associate Director also oversees departmental collaboration with helpdesk and infrastructure teams as well as distributed IT units.

Specific Responsibilities:
Leadership and Supervision. Leads and motivates the members of Platform Services Infrastructure (INF) and Research Computing Infrastructure (RCI) in providing services to Northwestern Universitys business units, distributed IT units, and research community:
Leads the transformation from on-premises application systems to cloud application systems where appropriate, ensuring the staff is trained and knowledgeable in the new skill sets and modes of operation while working closely with vendors and staying informed on best practices in higher education.
Optimizes the production of the Platform Services Infrastructure and Research Computing Infrastructure workforce through team assignments and project assignments.
Provides vision, motivation, tactical guidance, and mentorship to the PS Infrastructure and Research Computing teams.
Continuously drives innovation, adoption of new technologies, and process automation.
Ensures Platform Services INF and RCI staff receive appropriate training and opportunities for career growth.
Collaboration. Works in partnership with business partners, other Cyberinfrastructure units, Research Computing Services, service operations, the support center, and distributed IT units to deliver impactful services to the Northwestern community.
Consistently encourages the Platform Services INF and RCI teams to collaborate with all of their stakeholders.
Works with the University community to determine the capabilities, options, and applicability of new technologies and services within IT.
Collaborates with University colleagues to provide IT services that advance the strategic goals of the University.
Identifies, analyzes, and supports shared service initiatives with other University IT leaders.
Customer Service. Provides excellent customer service to business partners, the analyst teams, cyberinfrastructure units, the support center, and distributed IT units.
Supervises the delivery of support for services, ensuring a high quality and customer focused response to support issues.
Reviews metrics data related to capacity and operational performance of the environments and team members on a monthly basis, with intent and action to improve ongoing service delivery.
Manages annual audits, recurring operational projects, monitoring, and 24x7 support.
Ensures quick response to priority incidents.
Ensures CI Service Operations Center is regularly communicated with and trained to support PS INF and RCI infrastructure as appropriate to their role.
Ensures satisfactory progress on all projects owned by Platform Services PS INF AND RCI, and that PS INF AND RCI staff satisfactorily contribute to projects owned by other units. (Application Systems, Support Services, Research, The Schools, and other Northwestern administrative departments)
Miscellaneous. Performs various management functions related to the PS INF AND RCI unit.
Ensures the PS INF AND RCI portfolio and projects are documented and managed in the CI Project Index and all projects leverage the CI Project best practices.
Takes appropriate actions and assists managers and team leads in taking appropriate action related to underperforming personnel, and establishes a culture that regularly provides recognition, positive, and constructive feedback for all personnel.
Leads various committees and working groups in NUIT, Research Computing, and the University.
Participates in various communities outside the University such as the BTAA and vendor/product based communities.
Assists Platform Services Director with management of Platform Services Infrastructure and Research specific budget planning, purchases, and maintenance renewals.
Performs other duties as required and directed.

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Required Skills & Experience

Minimum Qualifications:
Bachelors degree in computer science or equivalent education, training, and experience from which comparable skills, abilities, and knowledge was acquired.
Minimum fifteen years experience in IT with a track record of high performance and increasing responsibility.
At least ten years of leadership experience with direct responsibility for a reasonably sized team supporting information technology.
At least five years of relevant experience in infrastructure strategy and operations that includes architecture, real-time integration, and cloud computing.
Excellent staff management skills, including:
Experience in selection and hiring of customer-focused staff members
Clear programs of staff development through training and mentoring
Clear expression of expectations, goals, and timelines, with appropriate delegation, monitoring of progress
Minimum Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities.)
Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including public speaking and the ability to clearly present technology solutions and services to non-technical staff and administrators.
Excellent organizational skills, management of own time, and respect for the time of others.
Proven ability to think both strategically (e.g., long-term needs) as well as tactically (e.g., current needs/schedule trade-offs).
Demonstrated ability to envision campus-wide approaches to IT services and to develop and implement effective plans for service delivery.
Excellent planning and scheduling skills, with the ability to be flexible in the face of sometimes uncontrollable changes.
Proven ability to effectively control and/or participate in multiple projects of varying priorities in a fast-paced environment in a consistently professional manner.
Proven ability to manage, motivate, and evaluate professional IT staff.
Ability to establish and maintain respectful and effective relationships with management, co-workers, and customers.
Ability to work effectively with a range of responsible parties throughout the University, either as a project leader or as a team member, to advance projects to timely and successful completion.
Demonstrated ability to analyze problems from multiple points of view, to lead consensus building within groups with differing views, and to translate consensus into planned action.
Ability to act on own initiative to further organizational and University goals.

Nice to Have Skills & Experience

Preferred Qualifications:
Past experience in a university or a highly decentralized corporate environment..
Demonstrated experience in working with new technologies and methodologies.
Preferred Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities)
Experience with a broad range of technologies. Including enterprise level Storage, virtualization, networking (Routers, switches, firewalls), software development (Infrastructure as code), automation tools, Backup technologies, Research specific technologies, third party cloud platforms, third party hosted SAAS and infrastructure solutions.
Ability to understand current and new technologies and their business value, and drive discussions with peers and the community around meeting business requirements through the appropriate use of technology.

Benefit packages for this role will start on the 31st day of employment and include medical, dental, and vision insurance, as well as HSA, FSA, and DCFSA account options, and 401k retirement account access with employer matching. Employees in this role are also entitled to paid sick leave and/or other paid time off as provided by applicable law.