Operations Manager- Central Texas (Austin/San Antonio offices)

Austin, Texas
28 Oct 2016
08 Jan 2017
BI 00013M
Contract Type
Full Time
The Buildings & Infrastructure Line of Business is a global network of employees, which serves both the private and public sector. Our employees work to shape the communities we live in by creating world-class projects that transform the future development patterns of those communities. We provide our clients award-winning planning, engineering, architectural and interior design, construction and program management, and design-build project delivery. The Jacobs business model allows us to successfully service our clients, leverage our integrated services, and provide our employees with growth opportunities while delivering global solutions to our client's local programs.

We consistently receive high rankings from Engineering News-Record (ENR) in many classifications, including the categories of Top Design Firms, Top Contractors, Top Green Buildings Design Firms, and Top Transportation Companies.

The Operations Manager is responsible for all P&L, project and program delivery and execution, and safety, within their operational performance units. The role requires leadership within the regional area to assure that the day-to-day operations are met against the key performance indicators outlined below. The primary and single point of accountability and empowerment for P&L resides with our operations managers. This role also requires leveraging global Jacobs' resources and market sector leadership to develop high-value solutions and drive growth. Overall, the Operations Manager should be intimately familiar with the clients, opportunities, people, and work within the performance unit.

Additional responsibilities include close coordination and involvement with the following regional resources to drive PU growth, provide flawless execution, and safeguard the company's interests; Inside Sales, Outside Sales, Project Execution Group, Project Controls, Project Accounting, Contracts Management Group, Legal, Safety Manager, Quality Manager, Human Resources, and Recruiting.

Key Performance Indicators and Job Responsibilities:


• Keeping people safe is the top priority and should be the foundation of our operation. Our BeyondZero safety culture demands that we embrace the same safety standards regardless of the type of work being engaged. A leader in this role should be passionate about safety and communicate the value and culture throughout the organization. Part of this requires the creation of new ideas, actions and initiatives that help re-enforce the message that all accidents are preventable.

o Performance Measures are Maintain a zero incident rate, Work hours per E-1, TRIR (Jacobs and subcontractors), DAWC (Jacobs and subcontractors), Vehicle accidents per million miles driven (D1s)

o Establish a clear, documented and consistent communication to your management team

o Provide appropriate monitoring and coaching of local HSE/Beyond Zero leadership team

o Actively engage in office and field safety evaluation reviews (SERs) with HSE management and complete per established schedule

o Ensure that all HSE training is up to date for your respective operation

o Establish clearly defined deliverables and expectations from your management team & follow-up on them regularly

Profit & Loss:

• It is critical to the success of the Operations Manager to deliver organic growth consistent with the business plan's established goals with a focus on Net Operating Margin. The primary and single point of accountability and empowerment for P&L resides with our operations managers. This requires instituting clear expectations of your management team to help drive key KPI metrics. There are three aspects that directly affect P&L: Growing gross margin, cost control and protect the balance sheet.

1.) Growing Gross Margin:

It is the responsibility of the Operations Manager to ensure the operation replenishes itself with profitable new work in ever-increasing numbers. This requires looking strategically at the opportunities represented by the markets, technology and geography and how they are implemented within the operation.

Performance Measures:

• Net Operating Margin

• Gross Margin in absolute terms and its trend

• Gross Margin vs. Plan

• GM/G&A Ratio

• Align with Outside and Inside sales to position win "Key Pursuits" and add "flywheel" projects each year to the sales pipeline

• Ensure realistic, meaningful and tangible forecasts are submitted for FY planning, with a focus on growth year-after-year

• Meeting rolling forecast projections, especially in the nearest quarters.

• Ensure accountability towards performance against the plan

2.) Cost Control:

It is important to take a constant "zero-based" look at where money is being spent and why. This insures a detailed look at your costs and will shield against simply asking for an increase over the previous year's spend. This requires constant freeing up of inefficient dollars for use towards new investments towards your top, middle and bottom line. This goes for people and other resources.

Performance Measures:

• G&A vs. Plan (adjusted for actual GM)

• GM/G&A ratio

• Actively monitor and maintain the 510 account on a weekly basis

3.) Protect the Balance Sheet:

Bring focus on two principal areas: cash flow and write offs. This role requires responsibility for maximizing the cash flow from operations. Minimizing past due receivables is a key part of success in this role and therefore requires a constant focus to improve year-after-year results. Part of this requires securing favorable terms with quicker billings and collections with our clients.

The other key component to protecting the balance sheet is minimizing risks and associated write offs. Terms and conditions in our contacts require personal attention. This requires working with your management team to develop programs, activities and other means for creating a culture within your operation that engages people in growth, quality and passion for excellence.

Performance Measures:

• Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) targets as identified by the GM per fiscal year, and show year-over-year improvement

• Set DSO goals for your Designated Project Executives (DPEs)

• Past due receivables should decrease year-over-year

• Unbilled balances decrease year-over-year

• Write-offs as a percent of Gross Margin minimized as directed by the GM

• Hit List "probable" totals awaiting recognition decreases year-over-year

• Active and personal engagement in deflecting potential claims.


You must always work towards attracting, engaging, developing and retaining key personnel. We need to look more broadly than ever before for talent, we need to get the right people from this broader pool and we need to train and develop them.

1.) Inclusion & Diversity:

It's important to put a continual focus on diversity and inclusion as it relates to maintaining and growing talent within as well as bringing new and inspiring talent to the table. This requires working in-conjunction towards the annual Regional Inclusion and Diversity Plan.

Performance Measures:

• Positive progress toward the specific goals and demographics set out in each regional plan

• Develop & promote formal intern programs and focus on hiring high levels of college graduates each year as outlined in each plan

2.) Balancing the Right Staff:

A key element of this leadership role is to continuously search for staff upgrades and staff development opportunities to ensure the best possible people are working within the organization. This role requires honest assessments of the performance of your management team, and the use of progressive discipline for the improvement or removal of individuals that do not meet the expectation or embrace the vision established by Jacobs for the company and the Region.

Performance Measures:

• Key Hires: Focusing tangible efforts towards attracting strong, strategic, and "game changing" talent to the operation

• Ensuring the right staff are on board to execute projects

• Prepare performance goals for each direct report annually in conjunction with conducting their formal performance assessments annually

• Merit increases according to the guidance set by the Regional leadership.

3.) Retention of Staff:

To ensure employees feel connected, this role requires visibility to properly demonstrate the regions and company's values and direction. It's required to visit the home and field offices often, and make yourself available to your people. Hire or develop great bosses that engage the staff. Considerable effort needs to be taken in this regard to both train and coach your leaders in reducing voluntary turnover.

It's important to make sure every employee sees a future, so they don't start looking elsewhere for one instead. Succession planning and development are essential parts to the larger retention tasks.

• Performance Measures:

• Complete performance reviews for all eligible employees at the completion rate determined by your RM

• Focus on meaningful and visible employee recognition and be able to provide specific examples on a regular basis

• Initiate and/or foster Jacobs Future, Jacobs Next within each major metropolitan office

• Support the Jacobs Women's Development Network group

• Implement career development and Leadership Resource Planning for each performance unit

• Hold Voluntary turnover at or less than targets as identified by the RM per fiscal year, and show year-over-year improvement for the PU

• Establish training budgets and track expenditure for the PUs and individual offices


A main strength of our relationship-based approach stems directly from the intimacy between the Operations Manager and our customer. This role requires the direct implementation of the Relationship-Based Sales Model (RBS) to strongly maintain the "customer intimacy" aspect of our business. This requires that our customers have a personal, high-level attention from Jacobs' senior management. This will require significant amounts of time with customers, dealing with their business issues and strengthening the overall business relationship.

This also requires a close partnership with Outside Sales and Inside Sales, with the individuals of all 3 groups mutually supporting each other's goals and objectives towards growth within the PU

This also requires strong leadership of your management team, for them to focus on continual development of the customer relationship and the flawless execution of projects. This requires a deep knowledge of the customer's business drivers and how they judge value. With that knowledge, you will drive continuous improvement of our performance for a given customer and constantly looking for ways to add that value.

This role requires visibility in developing the strategy and design of our relationships with the core clients and key clients in the Operation. This means taking a strong role as executive sponsor and actively participating in the 10:1 teams for the key client base. It also requires personal leadership and continual connectivity towards community engagement & visibility within the industry.

Performance Measures:

• Increase the "presence of Jacobs" within your markets measured by the number of Jacobs staff in leadership board and committee positions in our industry's organizations. This includes personal service in a leadership position to be a visible face of Jacobs in industry associations (i.e. local and national committees, Boards etc.)

• Executive Sponsor, owing primary client relationships

• Active DPE on key projects

• Follow the GM and trends of Key Clients

• Lead and manage the relationship with your Outside and Inside Sales teams

• Achieve and maintain the regionally-established Hit Ratio on key clients and B&P funded pursuits

• Participate in red/pink/green team reviews for projects associated with key and core clients.

• Hold pursuit teams accountable for adherence to the established Operational (503) and Sales (B&P) budgets

Project Execution and Quality:

Ensuring Quality and Project Execution are imperative in this role and for the region. Specific areas include:

• Ensure specific work plans are developed for all projects as part of the project delivery review process. This requires monthly project updates at a minimum.

• Review the people, tools and processes for successful project execution, and eliminate any gaps found.

• Enforce our contract negotiation protocols and maintain favorable contract terms for every contract.

• Develop sustainable programs, communication strategies and outreach efforts to build a culture of quality. Holding the management team directly accountable for poor execution of work, especially if they fail to follow established policy and procedures.

• Require a culture of continuous improvement and delivery of uniquely superior value

• Establish a culture of quality that elevates the passion and commitment to excellence

• Act as the lead strategist and problem solver on difficult, complex or critical problems in the operation.

Performance Measures:

• Client Survey Scores above 90%

• Value Plus & Sustainability Plus Results - establish goals for each

• Write offs trending down

• Ensure client expectation surveys within 15 days of NTP on all new projects and conduct satisfaction surveys for all key clients a minimum of once every 6 months

• Bachelor of Architecture or Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree is required

• Master degree is preferred

• Professional registration as an Architect in Texas, Registered Professional Engineer in Texas, or another professional registration utilized in the AEC industry is preferred

• At least 20 years of experience in buildings or infrastructure design (architecture or engineering) experience is required

• Minimum of 10 years of project management experience involving direct client contact and full responsibility for engineering design and engineering during construction is required.

• Experience in the Austin or San Antonio market is required.

• The candidate must have strong leadership skills, a strategic focus to build an engineering practice, and be able to identify, attract and hire key additional staff.

• The candidate must be able to drive vision and have strong networking and presentation skills

• Extensive business knowledge, relationships and industry connectivity in the Austin /San Antonio (CTx) area is required

• Buildings & Infrastructure industry experience; multiple markets, private sector / public sector is required

• Proven business builder; with a seller /does background, understanding of the Jacobs sales process - and entrepreneurial mentality

• Experience running a larger Design based operation

• People leadership skills; ability to attract & recruit in the B&I industry space is required