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  • Vacancy

Director – International Programmes

The Behavioural Insights Team (BIT) is looking for an experienced candidate to lead our London-based international development team and to support the expansion of our behaviourally-informed social impact work internationally with a particular focus on the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The ideal candidate will have a strong network across governments and funders in the region, and experience in business development, leading high performing teams and delivering major programmes of work.

The Behavioural Insights Team is the world leader in applying behavioural science to public policy challenges in order to strengthen communities and improve lives. BIT works with governments in almost every area of policy. Whilst each project is different, there are common threads: we try to understand the contexts in which people make decisions; we find out what has and hasn’t worked before; we come up with innovative ideas for solving policy problems and we test and measure everything we do as robustly as we can. Our focus on testing, with a body of 700 randomised controlled trials, has put us at the forefront of a revolution in evidence-based policy. 

What does a Director do?

Demonstrate expertise and thought leadership

● Driving innovation in policy

You will be ultimately responsible for international programmes spanning a wide range of policy areas including: public health, hygiene and vaccinations; environment and sustainability; education; post-conflict reintegration; corruption; misinformation and lots more. You must be personally credible, adding significant value to projects, and able to drive behavioural, evaluation and policy experts in your team to more impactful solutions and cutting edge thinking. You will also act as a trusted advisor to those in senior leadership and other influential positions in the public sector in the UK and overseas, as well as commissioning and implementation partners.

● Representing BIT leadership both internally and externally

You will be an ambassador for BIT – with strong personal credibility – including presenting to large audiences, publishing articles and giving media interviews.

Grow BIT’s network and international reach 

● Manage key external relationships

Manage and develop key partner relationships, especially with major government, multinational and philanthropic funders. Ensure you understand their priorities and provide trusted advice that addresses their concerns.

● Build our network across the region

Lead an expansion in our network of clients and delivery partners across the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe and Central Asia. It is likely that you will personally lead on one of these areas and support colleagues to specialise in others. 

Support the expansion of our international footprint

Work with the Managing Director of Group Strategy to grow BIT’s permanent presence in the region, both through a network of trusted, long-term contractors, and also through the establishment of a new operational base in the Middle East or Africa, likely operational from late 2023. You will help decide the location, inform the business plan and timeline, and – along with colleagues from our legal, HR and finance teams – support the establishment of the new operation. 

Lead a team

● Developing and building your team

You will ensure your team (currently c.14 people) is sufficiently challenged, supported and has the opportunity to deploy their skills as best they can. You will set expectations for team performance and support them in achieving these goals. Where additional skills or resources are needed, you will identify, recruit, motivate and develop the best people.

● Overseeing the delivery and quality of your team’s work 

You will be responsible for the delivery of a range of behavioural insights projects for diverse government, public and private sector partners. Your role is to ensure these projects are high quality and impactful, and are delivered efficiently and on budget. You will lead by example and support the team’s effective collaboration – with other BIT teams & externally – to draw on the best and most appropriate expertise.

Ensure a healthy pipeline of high impact projects

● Ensure the financial welfare of the team

Plan strategically to make sure the team’s pipeline of projects provides financial sustainability for the team, whilst not sacrificing social impact, intellectual challenge and feasibility of delivery. Win new work by actively pursuing leads, inspiring partners and commissioners to work with us and overseeing successful bids and pitches. Work with colleagues to build a business plan and budgets for the team and then take responsibility for managing that budget. 

 What makes a great Director at BIT?

  • Experience improving government policy and services (at least 8 years) across the EMEA region.
  • A strong international network with organisations tackling social and economic problems: regional governments, NGOs, multilaterals and other funders.
  • Strong leadership skills – including a demonstrated ability to support team members, build a team, and tackle issues constructively as they arise.
  • Experience of business development and planning and a strong record of meeting commercial targets. 
  • Excellent program management skills; ensuring a commitment to quality in all aspects of project delivery.
  • A strong understanding of the behavioural science literature and the ability to design rigorous evaluations are both strongly preferred.

What can we offer you?

BIT really is a great place to work:

  • We have a hive mindset where we think out loud, share ideas and learn from one another. You will work alongside a friendly,  talented, and driven team with diverse expertise – from economics to anthropology and neuroscience – and a wide variety of personal and professional backgrounds. What unites us is the goal to have a positive social impact through our work.
  • We encourage flexible working and have a culture which enables this; for example flexible start and finish times and an IT set up which allows for easy working from home options.
  • We have regular team get-togethers with inspirational external guest speakers from a wide variety of backgrounds and specialisms. There’s always something new to learn about!
  • We have a flexible benefits programme which currently includes things like gym memberships, cycle to work schemes and the ability to buy extra annual leave at the start of the year.
  • We’re a social bunch and have a variety of interest groups including Film Club, BIT Kids for our parents & 5-a-side team to name a few. Many of these have continued virtually!
  • We have a great office in Westminster, which has an amazing coffee machine and fridges stocked full of soft drinks!

How to apply

We use a great platform called Applied to reduce bias in the recruitment process. You will need to answer a few work-based questions which will be anonymously marked by members of our team. Our selection is based on performance in these questions, rather than looking at your CV. 

Candidates with the top scoring answers will be invited to a structured interview where you get to meet some of the team. At the interview stage you will be asked questions that reflect the role and we may also ask you to complete a work-based task, so you have the chance to demonstrate your skills. It’s at this stage we first see your CV. We always give all applicants feedback, no matter what stage your application reaches. We may also consider your application for suitable alternative roles, should one be available.

Key dates

  • Role closes: 17 January 2022 at Midday
  • First round interviews: w/c 24th January 2022
  • Second round interviews: w/c 7th February 2022

All dates are subject to change (but we’ll try our best to not change them!)

Please note:

You will need to have the right to work in the UK in order to be able to undertake this role. We will ask all applicants short-listed for an interview to provide evidence of their right to work during the recruitment process.  If you do not have the right to work for BIT but are the most suitable person for the role we will explore with you whether sponsorship may be an option. However, this may not be possible for all roles.

Some of the personal data you provide to Applied when you apply for a role with The Behavioural Insights Team will be passed on to The Behavioural Insights Team for the purposes of (a) reviewing your application; (b) inviting you for interview; and/or (c) offering you a job and getting you set up as an employee/contractor. For full details on how BIT collects and uses your personal data please visit our Global Recruitment Privacy Notice.

If your application is not successful, any personal data provided to us by Applied (including any personal data relating to equal opportunities monitoring as set out above) will be retained by The Behavioural Insights Team for no longer than 6 months after the application deadline has passed (other than in exceptional circumstances where we may need to retain your personal data for longer), at which point your personal data will be securely deleted. We only keep your information for that period in order to allow us to comply with relevant legal obligations.

Apply now

Interested?