Programme Manager

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Programme Manager

Production Department


Job Title: Programme Manager

Department: Production

Reporting to: Programme Director

Location: Cape Town

Summary of Key Responsibilities

The Programme Manager is responsible for managing the production client experience, working with the client to determine their brand objectives in the creation of learning programs and negotiating the best outcome for both the client and the business. This role oversees the full project management function of course production and drives profitability for the business. The Programme Manager is responsible for managing Senior and Mid Project Managers and ensuring their performance.

Close communication with the Programme Director, Traffic Director and Team Leads will be integral for the efficiencies for both client and Lobster Ink.

Key Responsibilities

  • Overall custodian of long term profitable and performance driven client relationships on specific portfolios
  • A trusted advisor and confidant to senior clients
  • Represents Lobster Ink at decision making levels
  • Works closely with Programme Manager and Team Lead to set and deliver on creative targets
  • To lead a team of Senior and Mid Project Managers and mentor them to improve their levels of responsibility and accountability, while managing their day-to-day performance
  • To draft accurate proposals, estimates and project budgets for production and translation projects and assist Project Managers in achieving the same
  • To provide strong guidance to the Senior and Mid Project Managers to ensure that deadlines and budgets are consistently met
  • To oversee that the Senior and Mid Project Managers deliver detailed recon reports in an accurate and timely manner and facilitate case studies and training sessions around these recons to ensure the team learns how to improve on them
  • To encourage innovative thinking across the department and push team members to
  • implement more effective ways of working that improve the timing and delivery of production outputs
  • To build and sustain loyal client relationships so as to develop opportunities for growth of new and existing business
  • To be highly solution-focused and help clients achieve their objectives as smoothly and quickly as possible without jeopardising the Lobster Ink quality of work
  • To take a keen interest in each client and research in-depth knowledge into their market sector, business objectives, and challenges so as to tailor innovative solutions to their specific needs
  • To lead client meetings, manage protocols, resolve challenges and respond effectively to changing client needs
  • To manage all Senior and Mid Project Managers on client production negotiation that impacts on scope change, cancellation, budget parameters or breach of contract
  • To build and manage a strong production pipeline of opportunities and communicate a clear forecast of upcoming work, while working closely with the Traffic Director regarding the availability of resources to meet client commitments
  • To provide feedback to the Primary Account Manager (Lobster International) to give updates on the status of the production opportunity status
  • To seek final approval from Primary Account Manager of all customer quotes that go out to the customer
  • To frequently liaise with the Programme Manager and Team Lead to manage risk and proactively try to resolve any potential challenges and queries that might impact on the meeting of client deadlines
  • To host regular training sessions with the Project Managers
  • To take overall responsibility for the cost management of all projects as well as oversee regular communication with the Finance department to keep updated on the financial status of accounts at all times


  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience as an Producer / Account Director/ Senior Project Manager with a proven track record in client engagement and retention
  • Hospitality, production or education background
  • Qualification or certification in marketing, hospitality or project management
  • Management experience of a team is essential
  • Strategic as well as hands-on project/account management experience
  • Agency experience would be an advantage
  • Strong leadership presence and leadership skills will be a differentiator

Skills, knowledge and attributes

  • Experience with both Microsoft Office and iWork suites as well as other project management programs required for execution
  • Highly proficient in Excel or Numbers
  • Strong proposal writing, pitch preparation and negotiation skills
  • Advanced presentation and influencing skills with the ability to succinctly tell stories when presenting ideas
  • Solid financial/commercial acumen and a strong focus on logistics (for scheduling and resourcing)
  • Excellent client relationship, interpersonal and communication skills
  • Must have excellent ability to work with people within cross functional teams
  • A systematic thinker who is confident, self motivated, articulate and practical
  • The ability to plan and strategize at a senior level
  • A very high level of resilience and the ability to perform consistently under pressure
  • The ability to oversee and mentor the Project Managers in juggling multiple clients and projects at any given time
  • An aptitude for identifying and solving customer problems
  • A hands-on and professional approach with both clients and team members
  • Able to quickly build rapport, credibility, and trust with prospective customers
  • Confident communicator (good public speaker with excellent digital communications etiquette)

What we offer:

  • Salary based on experience
  • An exciting international working environment
  • Working with cutting-edge cloud technology
  • Team up with the best developers in Amsterdam
  • Flexibility and work-from-home days
  • Collective Health Insurance
  • Weekly ‘wine-down’ tradition coming from the hospitality background of Lobster Ink
  • So much more…