Skip to main content

Head of Projects

This job posting is no longer active.

ISP Middle East
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Date Added: Nov 15, 2022

Save Job Saved


ISP ME Head of Projects Role Profile


Purpose of Role

Reporting to the Regional Managing Director, the ME Head of Projects is responsible for the delivery and opening of new build schools on cost and on time in the region while managing risk. They play a key role in planning and delivery of new school infrastructure, expansion, improvement and renovation projects.  This role requires the ability to build strong, collaborative relationships with individual school leaders, the regional leadership team, school leadership teams, external stakeholders, contractors and consultants to ensure the delivery of positive outcomes across the region. This role involves frequent travel within the region and occasional travel beyond this.

The current pipeline of projects includes two capacity expansions in Dubai and one in Abu Dhabi.

ISP Principles

  • Begin with our children and students. Our children and students are at the heart of what we do. Simply, their success is our success. Wellbeing and safety are both essential for learners and learning. Therefore, we are consistent in identifying potential safeguarding issues and acting and following up on all concerns appropriately. 
  • Treat everyone with care and respect. We look after one another, embrace similarities and differences and promote the well-being of self and others.
  • Operate effectively. We focus relentlessly on the things that are most important and will make the most difference. We apply school policies and procedures and embody the shared ideas of our community.
  • Learn continuously. Getting better is what drives us. We positively engage with personal and professional development and school improvement.


ISP ME Head of Projects Key Responsibilities

Project Delivery

  • Work with the Regional Managing Director to take projects from concept to reality.
  • Plan projects, work on business plans and key project risks.
  • Liaise with the stakeholders to ensure a successful outcome to the project.
  • Ensure that appropriate resource and expertise is brought to bear on a project to ensure its successful outcome within the allocated budget.
  • Work with regulators, educational, marketing and finance colleagues to ensure the successful delivery of the project.
  • Managing the team of contractor and architects on site to ensure milestones are met.
  • Ensure compliance on all standards are being met and followed during the build and pre-opening process.
  • Obtain all permits and licenses (including building completion certificate, Land Dept, government ministries, KHDA NOC, etc.) required for a successful school opening.

Project Implementation

  • With the Regional Managing Director, develop project plans and present them to the DCEO for approval.
  • Be responsible for the implementation of the plans, reporting on progress and managing the risks.
  • Be the budget holder for the project.
  • Establish a robust and rigorous process of on-going review and continuous improvements in all aspects of the new build projects.
  • Create and maintain strong and commercially sound partnerships with real estate developers and construction partners.
  • Managing risks to avoid delays or reputational damage.


  • Carry out duties alongside other members of SLT to prepare the school for opening and ensure smooth operations once opened.
  • Establish effective whole school administrative functions which deliver outcomes within the school’s vision.
  • Establish and use effective methods to review and improve project management systems.
  • Working in an office and on a construction site as required.
  • Ensure all appropriate records are maintained.


  • Work closely with the Head of Finance to ensure budget plans are viable and support effective operations.
  • Prepare business cases for areas such as accommodation, FFE, education resources, HR, transport, ICT infrastructure, service contracts such as catering and landscaping etc.
  • Monitoring of contracts and resources ensuring continued value for money. Devising cost-effective plans to enable effective project completion.
  • Overseeing procurement of goods and services using best practice model and ensuring best value.
  • Establishing of robust systems of control for purchase of goods and services prior to and after opening.
  • Advise the Regional Managing Director immediately where mismanagement of school funds is suspected, or value compromised.
  • Assist in planning for maximising income from external sources such as letting of facilities in conjunction with the Head of ASA.
  • Ensure that an inventory of assets is prepared and maintained by the school.
  • Ensure that the school has sufficient and appropriate insurance cover and other licenses as appropriate.

Management Information Systems & ICT (including phones and photocopiers)

  • Determine with the Head of ICT appropriate IT infrastructure and ensure contractors fulfill installation as per specification agreed.
  • Act as an in-school point of contact for contractors and software and hardware providers to the school. Working closely with Head of ICT communicate the strategy and relevant policies, including data protection for use of technology across the school.
  • Ensure resources, support and training are provided to enable work colleagues to make the best use of available IT.
  • Ensure contingency plans are in place in the case of technology failure.

Health and Safety

  • Oversee the health and safety team to ensure practices and procedures are set up prior to students entering the school.
  • Ensure that appropriate safeguarding procedures are in place for visitors to the school during the project phase.
  • Ensure all service providers are aware of and adhere to safeguarding and health and safety procedures.
  • Ensure all contractors engaged through the tender process adhere to best health and safety practice and policy

Premises and Facilities 

  • Support the initial set up of security operations and maintenance contracts with the Facilities Manager.
  • Ensure the security operations of all school premises.
  • Seek professional advice on insurance and advise the Principal on appropriate insurances for the school and implement and manage such schemes accordingly.


Skills, Qualifications and Experience

  • Professionally qualified in Architecture, Engineering, Surveyor or construction management holding an appropriate degree level qualification.
  • A Master’s degree or further qualification in Facilities Management/Asset Management would be advantageous .
  • 7-10 years of leadership experience managing building and/or project management experience in the UAE.
  • In-depth understanding and knowledge about processes and requirements of ADEK, KHDA and MOEHE.
  • Facilities and Building Management experience, including experience gained in a multi-site environment, Project Management Experience (including management of new builds) and CapEx Management.
  • Experience of managing 3rd party contractors.
  • Planning and project management skills. PMP or equivalent certification will be an advantage.
  • Experience of managing facilities in a school/university environment desirable.
  • Knowledge of development, planning and execution of preventive maintenance routines.
  • Knowledge of Civil protection, fire department, labour law, health and safety, construction parameters and educational infrastructure’ requirements.
  • Knowledge of electrical safety, working at heights, personal protective equipment requirements.
  • Knowledge of property security, access control, CCTV operation, security incident management, car & pedestrians transit regulations.
  • Knowledge of hygiene in schools, water purification, wastewater treatment.
  • Excellent knowledge of MS Office applications (Excel, Word, PowerPoint).
  • An inspiring leader with strong interpersonal skills and the ability to build relationships throughout the region and schools and influence key stakeholders.
  • A methodical, highly organized approach with exceptional attention to detail and the ability to work effectively in a fast-paced environment.
  • Fluent in English, with strong written and verbal communication skills. Additional language skills, especially Arabic, an advantage.
  • Positive, proactive, passionate, personable, results orientated, ambitious professional, who is keen to be part of a fast-growing global group.
  • Cross-functional teamwork experience and the ability and desire to work collaboratively in a matrix structure.
  • Diplomacy and consensus building skills to establish trust and credibility and the ability to handle confidential information with maturity and discretion.
  • Solution-driven, takes the initiative and solves problems with minimal supervision.

ISP Leadership Competencies

You consistently demonstrate and role-model the ISP Leadership Competencies in all that you do.

  • Takes an active part in leading their school or region; is cooperative and a genuine team player, developing positive, supportive relationships with colleagues to solve problems and maximise opportunities.
  • Learning & Getting Better. Continually demonstrates personal commitment and passion for learning and getting better using evidence and feedback, supporting others in their continual learning, development and growth.
  • Innovation Leadership. Is good at creating an environment where ideas for learning initiatives and services are generated and is able to motivate and inspire others through the process of creation through to completion.
  • Outcome driven. Can be counted on to find solutions. Is consistently looking to exceed goals and is focused on KPIs.
  • Can deal with setbacks and challenges calmly and effectively.
  • Community Focus. Is committed to meeting and exceeding the needs and expectations of our students and their families.
  • Integrity & Ethical Management. Has the ability to work ethically and with integrity; helps others feel valued; upholds and models the ISP Vision, Purpose and Principles.
  • Leading & Inspiring Others. Supports, encourages and inspires students, colleagues and teams so that they give their best.
  • Understanding People. Is a very good judge of talent, can objectively articulate the strengths and motivations of people inside or outside the organisation.
  • Influencing & Communication. Consistently informs, influences and inspires students, parents and colleagues through timely and effective communication.
  • Responds and adapts to changing circumstances; manages and solves problems by providing solutions in a climate of ambiguity.
  • Strategic, Commercial & Financial Awareness. Has the ability to apply understanding of the business and industry to improve effectiveness and profitability.
  • Planning & Decision Making. Makes decisions on the best course of action and then plans, organises, prioritises and balances resources to achieve the desired outcome.
  • Diversity & Equity. Has the sensitivity, awareness and skill to understand the values, behaviours, attitudes and practices across cultures that supports all children and adults to learn and work effectively.

ISP Commitment to Safeguarding Principles

ISP is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. All post holders are subject to appropriate vetting procedures and satisfactory Criminal Background Checks or equivalent covering the previous 10 years’ employment history.

Share: mail

Similar Jobs