Programme Manager

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Programme Manager

Production Department

  • Job Title: Programme Manager 
  • Department: Production
  • Reporting to: Programme Director 
  • Direct reports: Project Managers 
  • Location: Cape Town


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 all the Project Managers and ensuring their performance.

Close communication with the Programme Director, Traffic Director and Creative Director 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
  • A trusted advisor and confident to senior clients
  • Represents Lobster Ink at decision making levels
  • Works closely with Global Head of Production and Creative Director to set and deliver on creative targets
  • To lead a team of 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 Project Managers to ensure that deadlines and budgets are consistently met
  • To oversee that the 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 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 submit monthly production reports to the Board of Directors and Global Head of Sales outlining feedback on the profitability, production pipeline, client satisfaction and client retention, as well as communicate the weekly project progress report to the rest of the business
  • To frequently liaise with the Creative Director and Traffic Director to manage risk and proactively try to resolve any potential challenges and queries that might impact on the meeting of client deadlines
  • To regularly liaise with client, Finance, Sales and Operations and the Lobster International team to keep them updated on course production progress and deadlines
  • 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

Basic Requirements

  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience as an Account Director / Project Manager with a proven track record in client engagement and retention
  • Management experience of a team of at least 5 employees 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

Technical Knowledge

  • 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)