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(Archived) Chief Operations Officer

Last Updated: 5/26/23

Job Description


JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc. (JSI) is a global nonprofit dedicated to improving the health and livelihoods of individuals and communities throughout the world. The JSI family of global agencies includes World Education and the Partnership for Supply Chain Management (PFSCM), as well as independent JSI entities in India, Kenya, and Zambia. Founded in 1978, JSI collaborates with government agencies, the private sector, and local nonprofit and civil society organizations to identify and implement solutions to public health and education challenges. JSI now has more than 4,300 colleagues working across 8 offices in the United States and 46 countries around the world. Staff include researchers, consultants, technologists, project managers, and physicians who provide innovative technical assistance and capacity-building through large-scale implementation projects and smaller consulting projects across public health, health systems, and education. JSI relies on locally and regionally based staff in the US and around the globe to ground its approach in a deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing communities.


Reporting to the CEO of JSI, the Chief Operations Officer (COO) is an enterprise leadership position responsible for ensuring the highest standards of operational and human resource support for our colleagues in the US and around the world. This is a critical thought partner and advisor to the CEO and a key collaborator with the leadership team, to rethink and evolve the operations functions; ensure a people-centered organizational culture; bring vision and experience to the development of key organizational strategies; and translate them operationally to assist JSI’s global network in achievement of its goals.

In collaboration with senior leadership and key stakeholders, the COO will ensure operational practices are consistent, innovative, and collaborative across the various entities within JSI and around the world. This role will be responsible for ensuring global systems and accountability for human resources, safety and security, information technology and knowledge management. The successful candidate will have a deep understanding of the intersections and interdependency among these areas. In addition, the COO will oversee US-based office administration and create a plan to support global operations; and will have the proven ability to assess systems, identify inefficiencies, and introduce major process and practice improvements. The COO will have a very strong HR background, and will lead with a people-based orientation.

This is a new role, created for a new CEO’s mandate to update the operations, human resources, and strategy of a prestigious organization with a long and impressive history. The COO will oversee a diverse and talented staff committed to supporting JSI’s mission, and will identify and lead a dispersed and matrixed group of people in each of the major functional areas to ensure global standards and organizational culture. In concert with other senior staff, the COO has ultimate responsibility for ensuring that JSI effectively serves its employees and clients through operational excellence. The successful candidate will be a superb communicator and people manager, able to:
  • Influence direct and indirect reports;
  • Develop a strategic vision for each department through extensive listening and engagement to learn the needs;
  • Determine organizational structures, reporting relationships, and short and long-range staffing needs based on goals;
  • Manage day-to-day operations and enhance business growth;
  • Engage with other leaders to enhance business growth in a way that is consultative and builds trust;
  • Exercise discretion and transparency with all processes and practices in order to ensure a communicative and collaborative environment founded on principles of equity, that empowers and supports staff

Core responsibilities of the Chief Operations Officer (COO) include but are not limited to:

Information Technology
The COO will ensure that JSI has an information technology (IT) strategy and plan, as well as the capacity to meet the company’s business needs, deliver optimal return on investment, and maintain utmost security. The role will be responsible for ensuring that the appropriate IT team is in place to assist the organization in achieving its business and human resources goals. This includes ensuring JSI’s ability to identify new IT developments and technologies, anticipate the resulting organizational modifications, articulate and manage cybersecurity risk, develop and implement a strategic IT budget, and anticipate the long-term IT needs of the organization. The successful candidate will understand the critical role of a robust IT infrastructure to support JSI’s people; ensure exceptional communication about IT plans, functions, resources, and expectations to staff around the world; and champion creativity, innovation, and effective solutions.

Knowledge Management
The COO will be responsible for working across the IT and HR functions to build upon JSI’s knowledge management (KM) work. The COO will be responsible for ensuring that valuable information assets are findable and usable, and that their integrity and confidentiality are protected where appropriate; and that JSI develops, budgets for, and implements a KM strategy that accommodates both domestic and international teams and considers the differences among the various countries and the rural/urban divide. Critically, the COO will understand the strategic importance of a global KM strategy to evolve the flow of information, decision-making, and power across the JSI organizations.

Human Capital
The COO will develop and execute the long-term umbrella human resources strategy, and partner with senior management to ensure the infrastructure is in place for the global vision to be fully realized. As a trusted thought partner, the COO will advise the CEO in areas of leadership, employee relations, talent acquisition, engagement, compensation, organizational design and change, performance management and learning and development. The COO will ensure a culture of individual and team achievement, in which each employee’s objectives represent and reflect JSI’s strategic plans and are monitored through performance management goals. Of critical importance, the COO will spearhead JSI’s commitment to be a leading-edge diverse, antiracist, equitable, and inclusive organization and will be responsible for developing and executing innovative plans that foster equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging (EDIB). The role will oversee the strategic direction across the full scope of the HR function, domestically and internationally, and take responsibility for guaranteeing that the global teams receive the support they need to operate effectively. The COO will ensure that JSI’s policies and procedures comply with all applicable laws and regulations, and that changes are effectively communicated to all stakeholders.

The COO will work with the CEO and the leadership team to develop, review, and implement enterprise-wide strategic process and strategy. The COO will direct and coordinate the day-to-day functioning of JSI and World Education in accordance with policies, goals and objectives established by the CEO. The successful candidate will have proven leadership and management experience to oversee the short-and long-range strategic goals for operations; and a deep understanding of the interdependency of human resources/workforce planning, training and development, information technology, space management and legal compliance. In coordination with the CFO, the COO will oversee office administration, including but not limited to return-to-office planning; assessment of office use; and office management functions. The COO will create structures and processes to manage JSI’s current operations; monitor and improve their efficiency and cost effectiveness; and work cooperatively with other internal and external stakeholders toward advancing the mission and vision of JSI. Critically, the COO will direct and communicate results across JSI’s operations to assess performance against plans; inform and collaborate with the CEO on business operations matters that affect policy and programs; and work closely with the CFO in stewardship of JSI resources.


The ideal candidate will be an experienced people services professional with demonstrated leadership in a large, complex organization with directly related administrative management experience. The COO will have the proven ability to lead in a manner that promotes trust and transparency in recommending institutional change management; and developing effective policies, procedures, and programs to serve the JSI community.

The COO must be an excellent communicator with high EQ, and a collaborative, flexible individual with the ability to establish strong working relationships with key internal and external stakeholders. It is crucial that this leader works collaboratively with a diverse set of stakeholder groups in support of the JSI’s strategic direction while also balancing the operational needs and compliance requirements.

The ideal candidate will have a successful track record that includes:
  • An excellent record of achievement with at least 10 years of senior management experience.
  • Proven skill in partnering effectively with a variety of stakeholders to foster an environment that can deliver uniquely outstanding services.
  • Directly related broad-based senior human resources, information technology, operations and administrative leadership experience.
  • Proven commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Strong emotional intelligence.
  • Demonstrated record of leading effective organizational change management.
  • A collaborative, effective, and transparent leadership style that combines a capacity for strategic vision with technical expertise in effective operations management.
  • Knowledge of best practices and trends in administrative and business operations.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and implement a comprehensive and strategic vision, including planning, resource allocation, creative problem-solving, people services, learning and development and commitment to continuous improvement.
  • Proven ability to champion data-driven decision-making, innovation, and creativity.
  • Demonstrated capacity to communicate broadly across an institution, coupled with the ability to distill complex information and concepts to a broad array of stakeholders.
  • Outstanding interpersonal, oral, and written communication, negotiation, conflict resolution, and team-building skills.
  • Strong commitment to maintaining the highest levels of integrity and adhering to strong ethical principles of operations management.
  • A high level of professionalism with a demonstrated ability to gain confidence at all levels.

Interested candidates should submit their resumes and cover letters online.

Please apply via our Careers Portal:

Apply For Chief Operations Officer

Company Details

Boston, Massachusetts, United States
John Snow, Inc., and our nonprofit JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc., are public health management consulting and research organizations dedicated to improving the health of individuals and communities throughout the world. Our mission is to improve the health of underserved people and communities and to provide a place where people of passion and commitment can pursue this cause.Our sis...