Director of Operations

SmithGroupJJR SmithGroupJJR Employer:
San Francisco, CA, USLocation:
Tue, Jun 26 '18Posted on:

SmithGroupJJR is an international idea-oriented design firm that is committed to creating inspiring places that enrich the human spirit. We believe extraordinary environments are created when the design process is based on the principles of exploration, experimentation, innovation, sustainability, research, and collaboration. Our expertise in providing thoughtful and innovative solutions keeps SmithGroupJJR at the forefront of architectural, engineering and planning firms around the world. According to the 2017 Building Design + Construction magazine “Giants” ranking, SmithGroupJJR is the 7th largest architecture/engineering firm in the U.S.

The San Francisco office of SmithGroupJJR is looking for a Director of Operations to oversee all operational and financial aspects of the office. Guided by the objectives of the company, the DOO provides the leadership, management and vision necessary to ensure that the office has the proper operational controls, administrative and reporting procedures, and people systems in place to effectively grow the organization and to ensure financial strength and operating efficiency.

Working with us, you will:  

  • Manage office budget and control office expenses effectively.

  • Develop, monitor and report on operating costs within functional office areas.

  • Be responsible for the office’s audits.

  • Meet with PM’s on regular basis to determine earnings on projects.

  • Act as an advisor on any contracts into which the office may enter.

  • Work with Studio Leaders and Human Resources to resolve staffing needs.

  • Participate in the interview process for key staff candidates.

  • Participate in the development of the office’s plans and programs as a strategic partner.

  • Participate in policy development, communication and implementation.

  • Assist in providing leadership for problem resolution to facilitate faster improvements and improved working relationships.

  • Be available as a resource for work groups and others.

  • Set annual goals, reviews performance, counsel and mentor staff.

  • Help to identify and develop individuals for succession and advancement.

  • Assist in determining standards of performance as a basis to review progress of Studio Leaders.

  • Maintain a favorable working relationship with all other company employees to foster and promote a cooperative working climate. Help to foster cohesion and communication within and between the various studios.

  • Foster cross-office collaboration on standards and staff sharing with other DOO’s.

  • Serve as Principal-in-Charge on projects when appropriate in order to maintain practice legitimacy.

An ideal candidate has:  

  • At least 10 years of management experience.

  • Experience with Architectural, Engineering, Interior Design, Planning or similar service industries.

  • Demonstrated ability to lead people and get results through others.

  • At least a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture, Interior Design, Architectural Engineering, Engineering, or related major or equivalent combination of education and experience.

  • Professional license in a relevant field of discipline or certification within professional discipline.

  • Design-build and IPD experience a plus.

  • Successful Change Management experience a plus

Success Metrics:  

  • Accurate office budgets with appropriate feedback on status and potential action plans.

  • Accurate forecasts coordinated between studios and office leadership.

  • Timely delivery of key financial and performance reviews and their impacts on the office as a whole.

  • Acknowledgement of constructive and supportive engagement in cross-office reviews and national DOO initiatives.

  • Timely implementation of appropriate new policy initiatives or adjustments to existing ones as they apply to operations issues.

  • Strong staff retention metrics, except for occasional attrition attributable to “life changes”.

  • Positive feedback on hiring efforts – the right people at the right time, quickly integrated into projects and the office.

  • Generation of new ideas for office improvement, in conjunction with the OD as a partnership.

  • Staff and leadership perception that the DOO is accessible and responsive.

SmithGroupJJR offers competitive compensation and an excellent benefit package, including 401(k) and continuing educational reimbursement. We offer three weeks of paid time off within the first year of employment, with the option of purchasing additional time off, and pay for seven or eight federal holidays. We also offer an alternative work schedule that provides employees with an additional 15 days off per year (usually Fridays) to help with work/life balance.

Equal Opportunity Employer/Veterans/Disabled 

SmithGroupJJR is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, or protected veteran status and will not be discriminated against on the basis of disability or arrest/conviction records.

Interested in joining us? Get started today by clicking the link below. Be sure to fill in the required information, and submit your cover letter and resume as PDF attachments.


Instructions for applying – please read carefully.

  • Go to and go to the Careers page / San Francisco.
  • On the Director of Operations posting, please click the Apply here link. Fill in the required information, and submit your cover letter and resume. Please include salary requirements in your cover letter.

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