The Brandeis GPS blog

Insights on online learning, tips for finding balance, and news and updates from Brandeis GPS

Month: March 2017

SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: One Acre Fund

Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where:  One Acre Fund: Kakamega, Kenya; Rubengera, Rwanda; Muramvya, Burundi; Iringa, Tanzania; Jinja, Uganda; Iringa, Tanzania.

About: One Acre Fund is a nonprofit organization that supplies smallholder farmers in East Africa with asset-based financing and agriculture training services to reduce hunger and poverty.

Position: Program Rotation Associate

Position Details: One Acre Fund’s field-facing operations are the front lines of our mission, and a place where our work is evolving rapidly. Our Program Rotation Associate position is designed to grow exceptional early-career professionals into a group capable of addressing some of the most pressing challenges facing One Acre Fund (and the social impact space more broadly). This program will provide highly qualified candidates a chance to contribute to our field program from a variety of angles. Selected Program Rotation Associates will have the opportunity to rotate through a variety of field-based postings, followed by one longer posting:

  • First 18 months: rotation between 3 different six-month long posts;
  • Next 18 months: spent in a single role of particular importance to the organization and interest to the candidate;
  • Afterward: opportunity to join one of our teams permanently.

Example rotations include:

  • Field Operations: This team is the direct service provider to our farmers, with the primary objective of building the capacity of our local staff to provide financially sustainable impact, at scale, to all One Acre Fund farmers. A rotation with Field Operations could include managing an entire season’s worth of training materials for 100,000+ farmers, designing incentives to ensure high repayment, or serving as a liaison to our crop health teams which monitor in-field agricultural problems for our farmers.
  • Business Operations: The objective of our Operations departments is to ensure that we are able to deliver on all of our promises to our clients. Operations encompasses mission-critical systems like finance, client data management, print, procurement and investigations. A rotation with Business Operations could include running bulk SMS service for 100,000+ farmers, creating a new customer service line and systems to support it, or ensuring that we can process farmer insurance claims fairly and rapidly.
  • Logistics: The primary responsibility of our Logistics team is to ensure that we deliver life-changing inputs and materials to farmers on time and at high quality. A rotation with Logistics would likely include managing a season’s worth of deliveries to thousands of farmers, including planning, troubleshooting, procurement of trucks, liaising with warehouses, etc.
  • Program Innovations: The Scale Innovations team aims to deepen One Acre Fund’s impact on every community we serve by increasing the percent of households who join our program, and by developing innovations that help our field staff serve farmers better. Example projects with the Scale Innovations team include running trials related to using tablet computers in field operations, a “junior OAF member” marketing trial, or reconfiguring the role of farmer group leaders in our operations.

Program Rotation Associates will work together with the organization to determine their country or countries of operation, individual rotations, and then their final full-time role. We see the Program Rotation Associate role as an opportunity to develop future leaders in international development, while meeting some of One Acre Fund’s most critical field-facing needs. Part of our commitment to this role is offering high-quality professional development and feedback opportunities as our Associates make their way through the various rotations.

Requirements:  We are seeking exceptional professionals with 2 to 5+ years of work experience, and a demonstrated long-term passion for international development. Candidates who fit the following criteria are strongly encouraged to apply:

  • Strong work experiences. Examples include a demanding professional work experience, or successful entrepreneurial experience (e.g. starting a field program in a developing country, leading a conference, starting a business, etc).
  • Leadership experience at work, or outside of work.
  • Top-performing undergraduate background (include GPA and test scores on your resume).
  • Humility. We are looking for passionate professionals who combine strong leadership skills with good humor, patience, and a humble approach to service to join our growing family of leaders.
  • A willingness to live outside of a capital city, close to our customers for at least two years – this is a long-term, career-track role. The ideal candidate will have at least one year demonstrated experience working in the developing world, although this is not a strict requirement.
  • Language: English required in Kenya, French a plus in Rwanda and Burundi. Swahili-speakers are particularly encouraged to apply.

Benefits:  Health insurance, immunizations, flight, room and board.

Apply:  Apply Here!

Please make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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5 ways to turn a loud home into a quiet study space

As an online student, it can be tricky to find the right place study  particularly if you’re someone who prefers a quiet work-space. If roommates, children, or even a busy street make it challenging for you to find a quiet study environment at home, we’ve got some tips for you!

Five ways to turn a loud home into a quiet study space

  1. Create a permanent study space. Differentiating between spaces in your home that are for relaxing versus doing work is crucial. Make a work station stocked with pens, sticky notes, chargers, snacks or anything else you need to help increase your productivity. Try to consistently use this space for school work and school work alone. This allows to you always associate this space with work and can also minimize distraction. Tip: If possible, try not to make this space in your bedroom. You are more likely to gravitate towards your bed if you can see it calling your name!
  2. Ask everyone to keep the volume down. This one may seem like a no-brainer, but give it a try. Make your children, roommates, or anyone else around aware that you need a bit of quiet time to finish your work before you can join them. With a quieter environment you are more likely to power through your work so everyone can resume their fun. You may a feel a little guilty about imposing a volume restriction, but it’s only temporary and it never hurts to ask, right? Tip: If you live in a noisy area download one of these sound machine apps or crank up the volume on some relaxing tunes.
  3. Eliminate all distractions. Turn your phone on airplane mode, move everything off your desk that isn’t related to your work, and for those who get really easily distracted, check out the Self Control App and block distracting websites on your computer.
  4. Keep track of time. Keep a clock or watch on hand and set a goal for yourself. If you know you want to be done within an hour, you’re more likely to stick to this goal if you hold yourself accountable and stay aware of the time.
  5. Find your hour of productivity. Do you work best if you’ve had some time to eat and relax? Or maybe you’re most productive if you dive right in when you get home from work. Find your most productive time and make it a habit to always conquer your work when you’re feeling most motivated. Tip: If you want to power through but know you’ll be distracted by your growling stomach, prepare a quick healthy snack to hold you over.

Any personal tips to share? Tweet your favorites to @BrandeisGPS!

Brandeis University’s Graduate Professional Studies division (GPS) is dedicated to developing innovative programs for working professionals. GPS offers 11 fully online, part-time master’s degrees and one online graduate certificate. With four 10-week session each year, Brandeis GPS provides exceptional programs with a convenient and flexible online approach. Courses are small by design and led by industry experts who deliver individualized support and professional insights. For more information on our programs visit the Brandeis GPS website.

SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: Hospital for Special Surgery

Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where:  Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, NY

About: Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) was founded in 1863 and is recognized as a world leader in musculoskeletal medicine. Though located in New York City, HSS treats patients from throughout the New York City Metropolitan Area, New York State, the United States, and over 90 countries who seek its internationally recognized specialized care. HSS has 215 beds and 36 operating rooms and performs more than 29,000 surgeries per year. HSS performs more hip surgeries and more knee replacements than any other hospital in the nation. HSS surgeons who specialize in joint replacement perform, on average, 365 of these operations every year. In addition, it handles more than 400,000 non-surgical outpatient visits annually. It is an affiliate of the New York-Presbyterian Healthcare System and Weill Cornell Medical College. It has one of the most sought-after residency programs and its graduates hold prominent positions in hospitals throughout the country.

Position: Senior Director, Enterprise Budget (SDEB)

Position Details: The Senior Director, Enterprise Budget (SDEB) will report to the Vice President of Budget and Financial Forecasting. He/she will also work closely with other members of Finance management, and senior leadership/management throughout HSS.

The SDEB will be responsible for the hospital’s patient-revenue budgeting process, including the development and oversight of the patient-revenue budget model. Working with key stakeholders throughout the organization, he/she will manage the annual budgeting process and develop the annual budget for all external entities/collaborations (e.g., Fund Inc., Properties Corporation, HSS ASC of Manhattan LLC., Stamford Health/collaboration, HS2). The Senior Director will evaluate the current processes for budgeting and take a lead role in advancing the systems in furtherance of strategic goals.

He/she will have deep knowledge of, and direct the development of, every component of HSS’s budgets, including, but not limited to: income statements for all divisions/entities, balance sheets, strategic initiatives, and volume/patient revenue. The SDEB will manage a Senior Analyst for Enterprise Budget.

Responsibilities:

  • Develop an extensive understanding of the hospital, its strategy and mission, its operations and finances, and its integrated strategic financial plan.
  • Manage the annual budget-development process for all external entities and collaborations to include, but not limited to: Fund Inc., Properties Corporation, HSS ASC of Manhattan LLC., Stamford Health/collaboration, HS2. For these entities, analyze and explain variances throughout the year.
  • Manage the patient-revenue budgeting process; develop and oversee the patient-revenue budgeting model; analyze and explain patient-revenue variances.
  • Work with key stakeholders to develop annual volume budgets, key commercial and government rate assumptions, and monthly spreads on volume and revenue.
  • With the VP of Budget and Financial Forecasting, conduct monthly reviews of the financial performance and update overall financial projections (P/Ls, cash flows, etc.) for the year.
  • Assist with the preparation of monthly reporting packages and dashboards for distribution to senior leadership.
  • Develop and coordinate all supporting budget documents required for Board presentations, annual budget book, management presentations, etc.
  • Advise VP of Budget and Financial Forecasting and Director of Financial Planning on relevant assumptions for the annual five-year forecast.
  • Help evaluate the capabilities of the IBM budget system and other potential software tools; lead the development of a world-class, interactive, and comprehensive budget tool.
  • Manage all projects through a systematic approach that translates work plans into deliverables, with measurable outcomes, on a timely and cost-effective basis.
  • Stay current on developments in hospital/healthcare finance and industry dynamics; provide strategic counsel and new thinking that add value to the institution.
  • Manage and mentor personnel; help build a highly capable and engaged team and foster a team-centered culture wholly consistent with that of the hospital.
  • Establish best practices; improve processes, systems, and methods of work to achieve the highest level of productivity and service to all constituents.
  • Establish strong working relationships with financial leadership and colleagues of interfacing departments, as well as key personnel at HSS entities and collaborations.

Requirements: 

  • A bachelor’s degree in accounting/finance or related major is required. Advanced degrees are desirable, but not required.
  • Solid experience (7-10 years0 in hospital budgeting and finance is required. Experience in a successful, dynamic, and growing organization is highly desirable.
  • Minimum of 5 years of supervisory, team-related experience is required.
  • Proven experience with all aspects of finance and budgeting in hospital environments (e.g., income statements for all divisions/entities, balance sheets, capital budgets, strategic initiatives, and volume/patient revenue, etc.)
  • Expertise in planning and developing budgets and financial plans for a hospital(s), as well as for external entities and collaborations.
  • Experience working with budgeting systems and maximizing functionality through productivity enhancements and better reporting applications.
  • Capable of quickly gaining a strong understanding of the operations and finances of the hospital and its integrated strategic plan.
  • Experience in leading and achieving results in a matrixed environment and working with various internal and external stakeholders.
  • Technology and system savvy. Strong Excel, Word, and PowerPoint skills. Familiarity with IBM Cognos TM1 and Epic is a plus.
  • Strong financial, analytical, and problem-solving skills. Experience resolving issues through innovative problem solving and solution development.
  • “Big-picture” thinker, with ability to carry out high-level analyses and relate findings to strategic goals.
  • Possesses a continuous-improvement mind-set. Tackles challenges and issues with a fresh approach; is creative and thinks “out of the box.”
  • Proven leadership and motivational skills. Demonstrated experience leading and managing employees and teams through well-established performance management skills.
  • Detailed, thorough, well organized and disciplined, with the ability to proactively manage multiple priorities/projects and meet tight deadlines.
  • Good written and oral communication skills; good listening capability; skilled at clearly and concisely communicating with all constituencies; can structure and effectively lead business meetings.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills; success at cultivating strong relationships with internal and external stakeholders and creating partnerships at all levels in an
  • Unquestionable personal integrity. Exudes credibility and professionalism. Very likeable. Quickly builds confidence in others. Team player and understands his/her role in relationship to others.
  • A highly committed, results-driven individual, with the necessary drive and stamina to respond to the demands of the institution and work collaboratively to achieve results.

Benefits: The compensation and comprehensive benefit package is competitive.

Apply: To receive full consideration for this position candidates should send a current resume in Word format and a summary of relevant experience/credentials to:

Chiharu (Cara) Arai, Senior Engagement Director: 3D Leadership, LLC – carai@3dleadership.com

Please make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: AXIS COMMUNICATIONS

Spotlight On Jobs

Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where: Axis Communications in Chelmsford, MA

About: Axis is a company; Axis is a culture; Axis is a way of life. The employees at Axis are innovative, dedicated, energetic, charismatic, strive for success, and that’s just the beginning. Their employees are the driving force of the company and seek to move it forward towards the goal of being number one in our industry. Axis encourages their employees to work hard, and play harder; whether it is a game of darts or ping pong on your break, a pickup game of basketball during lunch, or socializing at the summer outing, Axis employees are always outgoing and lively. Axis allows and promotes independent thinking; Axis seeks to act as one, to be always open, and to think big!

Position: Reporting Analyst

Position Details:  Axis Communications is seeking an individual with a proactive approach in understanding the needs of their business and excels at quantitative business reporting and analysis.

Responsibilities:

  • Provide financial and statistical business analysis to support and drive business initiatives
  • Prepare and distribute various sales reports and analysis on a daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly basis for all
    departments and levels of Management
  • Develop new report packages, utilizing Cognos
  • Spearhead database initiatives to increase reporting capabilities and efficiencies surrounding Axis processes
    and analysis
  • Work with Sweden IT team in maintaining appropriate standard reports in a user friendly format within the
    Cognos
  • Provide systematic evaluation of sales systems to ensure data accuracy
  • Assist in executing monthly POS reporting to deliver sales commissions
  • Performs other related duties as needed

To view additional details on this position, please visit the career portal here!

Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business or Finance, Math, Computer Science
  • Fluent in all Microsoft Office Applications
  • IBM Cognos
  • 2-5 years experience

Benefits:

Axis offers competitive pay and a great benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, company paid life insurance, 401K and tuition reimbursement. Perks include five-star company events, a fun culture and a casual dress code. Axis is a nationally ranked Great Place to Work and they’re growing fast. Join their team!

To receive full consideration for this position, candidates are asked to submit an application on the Axis Communications career portal.

Please make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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