Director - Finance & Operations

Apply now Job no: 504029
Work type: Staff Full Time
Campus: UMass Amherst
Department: Institute Applied Life Science
Pay Grade: 31
Categories: Accounting/Finance, Administrative/Office Support, Professional Staff Union (PSU)

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

The Institute for Applied Life Sciences (IALS) is home to three unique Centers focused on translational life sciences research: Center for Bioactive Delivery, Center for Models to Medicine, and Center for Personalized Health Monitoring ( and manages over 30 research facilities on campus.  Under the leadership of the Director of IALS, the Finance and Operations Director is responsible for all day-to- day operations of IALS, including supporting its infrastructure and management.


Essential Functions

Finance & Operations:

  • Direct, oversee and implement all administrative, financial and business matters associated with IALS
  • Direct, oversee and implement all HR related functions for the Institute and Cores.
  • As a member of the strategic planning team, steering committee, and external/industrial advisory boards, influence and implement decisions to achieve the mission and goals of IALS.
  • Serve, on behalf of the Director, as the IALS representative in complex administrative and business matters, maintaining confidentiality at all times.
  • Work closely and support the Core Facility team at the Institute to ensure that financial objectives of IALS are aligned with the budget projections of the more than 30 Core Facilities.
  • Direct and oversee the faculty start up budgets and salaries of all IALS associated faculty.
  • Plan and oversee the IALS Seed Grant program on an annual basis.
  • Oversee the facility operations and IT support of the Life Science Laboratories Building (North and South)



  • Responsible for all financial management and reporting activities in compliance with state and federal regulations and industry terms and conditions.
  •  Direct, oversee and implement all IALS purchases, including multi-million dollar equipment purchases for smooth operations of all Core Facilities.
  • Prepares budget forecasts and analyses of budget trends. Develops and implements new processes to increase efficiency and reliability.



  • Represent the Director as primary liaison with internal and external partners on a daily basis.
  • On behalf of the Director, work closely with the communications team comprised of a web developer and system support personnel.
  • Influence, plan, and assist with the execution of strategic events that promote the IALS mission, including retreats, seminars, site visits, and strategic planning meetings.



  • Oversee and supervise two administrative support positions and other support positions including a Building Manager and IT Support staff.


Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business administration, public administration, or related field, plus 7 years financial management associated with a complex and fast moving environment.
  • Extensive background in budgeting and interpretation of the rules governing the administration of grants and contracts.
  • Excellent interpersonal, organizational, and communication skills.
  • Strong analytical skills
  • Demonstrated experience and ability to work effectively with various computer systems, e.g., Microsoft Office, database management, and presentation software.
  • Ability to work effectively with a wide range of individuals, including administration, faculty, staff, and students.
  • Ability to exercise a high degree of confidentiality, judgment, initiative, and leadership.


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Master’s degree in Business administration, public administration, or related field, plus 5 years financial management associated with a complex and fast moving environment.
  • Experience in higher education preferred.
  • Experience with federals and state sponsors preferred.
  • Experience with software such as PeopleSoft and QuickBooks preferred.


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical office environment 


Work Schedule

Monday – Friday, 37.5 hours/week

Occasional Weekends/evenings and/or work-related travel including overnight meetings/conferences.


Salary Information

PSU Level 31

Salary Chart


Special Instructions to Applicants

Review of applications will begin January 6, 2020 and continue until the position is filled.  Required application materials include: a cover letter, resume and names and contact information for three professional references.

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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The University of Massachusetts is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Title IX employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age over 40, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, marital status, or other protected class.