Place of business:
Austin Pets Alive!
Austin Pets Alive! (APA!) is one of Austin’s most dynamic and best-loved nonprofits. With programming that is only 12 years old, the organization is the leader in the No Kill Movement nationally and is considered a national thought leader in animal welfare. APA! locally rescues, treats, and adopts out some 10,000 homeless dogs and cats each year, providing the safety net for Austin’s most at-risk shelter pets, which causes Austin to be a No Kill City, and helps other communities increase their live release rates. The organization is distinguished by the scrappiness of its grassroots, non-traditional animal rescue work. APA! has a huge number of volunteers who serve as critical pieces of APA!’s overall personnel structure. The organization now continues to innovate strategies to save sheltered lives and teaches its renowned No Kill lifesaving model to some 400 students annually, who travel to Austin to attend apprenticeships at APA!’s Maddie’s® Lifesaving Academy, and to hundreds of animal welfare professionals who attend the organization’s annual American Pets Alive! Conference (pre-COVID).
APA! has a people team of over 200 employees, 1500 volunteers, and 1000 fosters. This team must work collectively to achieve the goals and priorities of APA!. The Director of Strategic Human Resources is responsible for directing and overseeing all aspects of Employee Engagement. Included in these responsibilities are all administrative and financial functions related to the management of staff of the organization. As a member of the senior staff, collaborate in planning, developing, and implementing programs for the good of animals, the community, the staff, and volunteers. Develops Employee Engagement policies and programs for the entire organization. The major areas covered are organizational planning, organizational development, employment, training, employee relations, total rewards (compensation, benefits), safety and health, and employee services. Reviews, develops, and revises Employee Engagement policies, practices and objectives that will meet APA! strategic needs. Assists and advises senior management on employee issues.
In order to accomplish that, the Director of Strategic Human Resources will need to possess the following:
- A passion for the causes that we pursue; a true curiosity and commitment around finding more effective ways to stop the killing of pets; a willingness and desire to engage fully in the challenges of this work and to communicate its lessons, challenges, successes, and conclusions to others;
- An understanding of and passion to embrace the competing priorities of urgency and lack of resources that exists in animal welfare; a commitment to serving the operations;
- Experience in executive coaching and employee communication;
- A passion for supporting the Executive Director and Board of Directors in implementing the strategic vision for Austin Pets Alive! and American Pets Alive! (the national outreach division of APA!) at the national level;
- A passion for and understanding of human dynamics between paid and unpaid personnel; how to be inclusive of both at the leadership level; utilizing both in the most effective ways possible to reach goals;
- A core strength in advanced listening and translation skills; the ability and willingness to listen fully and to understand; the ability to ask the right questions; the ability to identify key points, refine the message, and play it back in ways that help clarify the thought and organization of the subject matter experts;
- Ability to determine and recommend employee relations practices necessary to establish a positive employer-employee relationship and promote a high level of employee morale;
- Excitement to play a critical role in overseeing all management actions. These include supervision, motivation, mentoring, evaluating, hiring, and terminating staff in accordance with protocols and policies;
- An excitement to understand the needs of all divisions of the organization to effectively support, develop, and maintain good working relationships with all APA! management and staff and volunteers;
- An equal thought partner with other team members in creating solutions from team discussions; a demonstrated ability to contribute to, and to lead, effective team efforts; the use of outstanding oral communication skills to move work and relationships forward; the ability to apply both formal and informal leadership skills as the situation dictates; the ability and willingness to build and maintain outstanding peer relationships;
- A comfort level with technology and a willingness to experiment in ways of using technology to increase the effectiveness of human resources programs, a curiosity and willingness to explore applications of newer technologies to further the mission of APA!;
- Experience in nonprofit large scale change management, organizational culture, and transitions;
- A relevant experience base and a passion in partnering with our team and other teams as they develop strategies to enable successful large-scale change initiatives; the ability to translate tools, processes, and techniques into useful and effective solutions; a strong ability to advise, influence and lead organizations as they, including APA!, develop a core competency around human resources practices;
- A degree of personal organization and results-orientation that would allow success in a quantitative, outcomes-oriented environment; a proven ability to exercise sound judgment and work independently on complex initiatives; the ability to work both strategically and tactically to drive human resources programs from start to finish; the leadership and motivation to drive to wise decisions and action with minimal management oversight but always in strong coordination with the Executive Director.
The successful candidate will embrace this leadership role; they will jump in, get involved, learn all about the operations from others, and bring ideas and results to the mission. This role cannot be approached as a “pass-through” or role. It is not about passing information from one group to another. The success of the role is dependent upon strong leadership, outstanding creativity, and a high degree of ownership.
Please visit the career page of our website to read the full job description and to apply.