Chief Operating Officer

Azavea · Philadelphia, PA (temporarily remote due to Covid-19)

Other Environment Partners & Advocates Food & Agriculture Public Service & Civic Engagement Poverty Alleviation & Economic Development Posted 4 days ago

User Experience Design (UX)
Project Management
Data Science
Machine Learning
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Azavea builds geospatial software and data analytics to address some of the biggest challenges facing our society and planet: climate change, energy, infrastructure, democracy, forests, and water. As a certified B Corporation, our purpose is to create state-of-the-art open source software tools and apply them for civic, social, and environmental impact. Over the past 20 years, we’ve grown from a single consultant to 50+ people that work together to help cities, federal agencies, nonprofits, philanthropies, and commercial organizations increase their impact through technology. Today, we are building software to bring transparency to the apparel supply chain, project wildfire risk, assess COVID vulnerability, measure stormwater runoff, and support urban forests.

We are seeking someone with an operational and managerial background to advance our mission through day-to-day business operations on a 6-12 month time horizon as our Chief Operating Officer (COO ), while the CEO focuses on long-term growth and increasing our global impact. This is a new role that will report to the CEO and work closely with existing executive roles that lead engineering, project management, and business development functions at Azavea. With the support of your executive colleagues, you will provide leadership, coaching, and direction to the Engineering, Finance & Administration, Human Resources, UX Design, and Project Management teams, and ensure alignment with activities that have both a near-term and long-term scope.

Goals of this role
  • Work with the CEO in setting organizational vision and driving operational strategy that aligns with Azavea’s heritage of mission-driven work aimed at innovation and social impact.
  • Oversee company operations by translating our strategy into relevant goals and practices for performance and growth.
  • Evaluate current functions and processes and manage implementation of improvements.
  • Build an inclusive culture that ensures team members grow and diversity, equity, and inclusion objectives are met.
  • Lead, manage, and hold the executive team accountable for achieving agreed- upon quarterly and annual goals.
  • Support recruiting, onboarding, professional development, performance management, and retention of executive leadership.
  • Daily and monthly responsibilities
  • Oversee and integrate major business functions, including Engineering, UX Design, Finance & Administration, Human Resources, and Project Management.
  • Coach and mentor members of the executive team.
  • Analyze internal operations and identify areas for process improvement.
  • Manage for the current year business plan and P&L results.
  • Monitor key performance metrics (for example, contract backlog, utilization rates, employee engagement, revenue, and net operating profit) and establish corrective measures and new metrics when necessary.
  • Meet with colleagues across organizational levels to support effective communication and the company’s innovation and social impact culture.
  • Prepare, support, and help individual contributors and teams with carrying out organizational change.
  • Identify and resolve issues that cross business units with clarity and pragmatism.
  • Develop near-term business strategies and plans that ensure integration with short-term and long-term goals developed in tandem with the CEO.
  • Guide the organization’s annual strategic planning process, including collaborating to develop objectives, metrics, and timelines, as well as monitoring progress.
  • Ensure communication and alignment of company activities with mission and values.
Skills and qualifications
  • Most recently held a senior role in a technology, software, or technology-enabled services organization of more than 50 people and have experience in one or more senior operational or managerial roles.
  • Experience leading, integrating, and managing multiple operating functions of an organization, such as Engineering, Finance, People Operations, and Project Management.
  • Demonstrate clear understanding of and alignment with organizational mission and values.
  • Proven track record of developing and articulating multiple ways to address a challenge or a decision; employing creative problem solving; and building a team for advice and input.
  • Ability to digest complex ideas, summarize and communicate them in simple, clear terms, and then identify areas for improvement and tactics for advancing the status quo.
  • Maintain an execution mind-set and have a bias toward pragmatic action.
  • Relentlessly resourceful and able to make things happen in the face of significant challenges.
  • Have experience mentoring and coaching other managers or senior leaders.
  • Understand that personal success is an outcome of company success, not the other way around.
  • Have a good understanding of basic financial documents such as P&L, balance sheet, cash flow statement, and a range of forecasts and projections.
  • Are comfortable working through conflict to bring parties together to a solution.
  • Demonstrate a solid grasp of data analysis and performance metrics.
Additional experience that may be valuable
  • Experience with professional services organizations focused on software or data engineering.
  • Experience in organizations that fund growth through grants and cash flow, rather than investor capital.
  • Interest in geography or geospatial technology.
  • Interest and passion for work that is aimed at some of the world’s biggest problems.
Reasons to join us
  • Help build a mission-driven company that is a leader in the use of technology for positive impact.
  • Shape an established organization for the next generation of growth and leadership.
  • Contribute to an open knowledge ecosystem through open source, open data, and open standards.
  • Lead and work with a group of people that are among the kindest, most thoughtful, and most capable people in the software world.
What You Can Expect

During the COVID pandemic, we are all working remotely, but our Philadelphia headquarters is located in a brightly lit office on the 5th floor of a converted factory building in the Callowhill neighborhood, a short walk from Center City, the Reading Terminal Market, and SEPTA subway and regional rail stations. For bicyclists, we have in-house bike parking, showers, and lockers. The office itself is assembled as an open office plan with several smaller rooms for team meetings and concentration time. We have flex-time to deal with personal stuff, and most people work a 40 - 45 hour week on a regular schedule. After the first six months, our staff can also spend up to 10% of their time on an open source, professional development, or R&D project. Recent 10% time projects include experiments with machine learning, new libraries, product development, and data science techniques.

We offer a salary commensurate with skills and experience and a benefits package that includes:

  • Fully subsidized health care, dental care, prescription plan, including for spouse/partner and children
  • Fully subsidized life and long-term disability insurance, plus voluntary short-term disability insurance
  • Medical reimbursement plan to cover what the health insurance does not
  • 401(k) retirement plan with company match
  • Almost 4 weeks paid vacation plus additional paid sick/personal time off
  • Family and medical leave
  • Flexible work schedule
  • Paid maternity and paternity leave
  • Child care subsidy
  • Paid time off for voting and volunteering
  • Education assistance plan
  • Student loan assistance
  • Public transit and biking reimbursement plans
  • Monthly guest lectures with lunches on the company
  • 10% time for research or learning projects
  • Profit-sharing bonus plan
  • Financial transparency through an open book policy
  • Kind, capable and thoughtful colleagues

We welcome qualified candidates from all walks of life and value diversity in our company. We prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, veteran status, military service, disability unrelated to job requirements, marital status, or domestic partner status.

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