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Chief Operating Officer - HousingFirst

Searchlight Group

  • Newly created Executive position
  • Drive high performance
  • Growth sector

HousingFirst is an award-winning, regulated, not-for-profit organisation providing social and affordable housing to over 1600 people across Melbourne. One of Victoria’s largest and fastest-growing community housing organisations, HousingFirst enjoy excellent working relationships with their stakeholders, including local, state and federal governments, developers, financiers, regulators and industry organisations. They are a Registered Housing Association, regulated by the Victorian Housing Registrar, with over 35 years of financial, property development, rental, asset management and community development experience that has created some of Melbourne’s most attractive and liveable homes. With a strong balance sheet and financial performance HousingFirst continue to drive their mission to build affordable homes and local communities.

The HousingFirst 2021-2026 Strategic Plan ‘Building Stronger Together’ outlines an aspirational growth plan from 1500 homes under management today to 5000 homes by 2026. To support this growth HousingFirst have created a new position of Chief Operating Officer to drive operational efficiency and effectiveness whilst building a culture of high performance and continuous improvement.

The Chief Operating Officer (COO) will report to and work closely with the Chief Executive Officer and the Executive leadership team to establish an organisation-wide performance management system that captures relevant data and translates this into key performance indicators and simplified reporting dashboards. Direct reports include ICT, Risk & Compliance, Strategy, Policy & Performance and Marketing and Communications, whilst the role also interacts with a range of stakeholders including the Board, State and Commonwealth governments, peak bodies, private investors, and other community service organisations and partners. The COO is a key part of the HousingFirst growth strategy and will take responsibility for business planning, identifying opportunities for growth and ensuring compliance with the regulatory requirements. This is a role that is highly strategic balanced with the need to drive operational performance and cultural change.

The COO is a new role that will suit someone who is self-motivated and prepared to roll-up their sleeves to quickly understand the HousingFirst Strategy and operations to build organisation intelligence and then prepare an organisational framework for high performance, including KPI’s and metrics. To be successful you will need to have strong experience and knowledge of the social housing sector or a similarly regulated environment and in a role that has encompassed strategic planning and the delivery of operational excellence. You’ll possess sophisticated communication, influencing and negotiating abilities and be able to translate data into simple and meaningful visual graphs, narratives and reports. You will need to be resilient, someone who enjoys working through ambiguity and solving issues and problems as they arise and be someone who consults and collaborates. Importantly, you will be a contemporary and adaptive leader with a personal style and approach that is empathetic and able to engage with staff at all levels, and equally able to drive cultural change leading to high performance and accountability. Strong financial literacy, project management and data governance expertise (ideally in social housing) or similar, along with the ability to successfully deliver outcomes with competing priorities will be expected of the successful applicant. A working knowledge of government funding and procurement processes and cycles will be highly regarded.

For further information about this position and the application process, go to the Searchlight Group website and download some additional information: www.searchlightgroup.com.au/careers.

For a confidential discussion contact Michael Holdway, Searchlight Group on (03) 9600 1137.

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