Assistant Director, Portfolio & Project Management-Transformation

Date: Nov 12, 2021

Location: Columbus, OH, US, 43202

Company: American Chemical Society

CAS uses intuitive technology, unparalleled scientific content and unmatched human expertise to help companies create groundbreaking innovations that benefit the world. As the scientific information solutions division of the American Chemical Society, CAS manages the largest curated reservoir of scientific knowledge, and for 114 years, has helped innovators mine, assess and apply that information to keep businesses thriving. The CAS team is global, diverse, endlessly curious and strives to make scientific insights accessible to innovators worldwide.

CAS is currently seeking an Assistant Director, Portfolio & Program Management-Transformation.  This position will be located in our Columbus, OH headquarters.

The Phoenix Transformation Program Lead is responsible for portfolio management aspects of the highly visible transformation strategies and tactical execution of initiatives that deliver both short and long-term results to the business. 

Phoenix transformation initiatives are to achieve improvements in processes, technologies, efficiency, effectiveness, cost-reduction and maximization of value for changes that support the organization’s core mission.  This includes, but is not limited to, leveraging and influencing key internal groups and external partners to analyze business operations, assess processes, evaluate financial impacts, develop and articulate a strategy, obtain buy-in, and execute transformation plans to drive success.

This leader in this role must have significant experience in leadership of transformation programs, wide leadership range, and demonstrated success in influencing executive leaders and coaching across very large and diverse teams. This role reports to the Chief Scientific Officer & Vice President, Content Operations.

Key accountabilities:

Drives alignment and influence regarding the vision and overall strategy for the Phoenix Transformation including transformation governance through cross-functional and matrixed teams. Originates, executes, and influences transformation governance strategy and success measures. Executes end-to-end portfolio governance and portfolio management practices and processes for Phoenix, the largest, most impactful, and most complex transformation in company history and in alignment with the strategic goals and objective of CAS’s senior leadership team.

Supervises and leads portfolio, program and/or project managers to oversee the impacts and interdependencies between transformation workstreams. Advises influences, and coaches team members in the development and achievement of project goals and plans. Support Phoenix Workstream Program Leads by coordinating and driving alignment across workstreams. 

Develops and maintain strong business relationships, individually, and across teams. Role models and influences peers and colleagues on collaboration and partnership. Provides constructive feedback and influences to leadership of all levels to help optimize and streamline transformation plans, procedures, and processes.

Oversees portfolio of transformation programs/projects in accordance with program management best practices including, but not limited to: develops and distributes quality project-related documentation to all interested parties, including project plan and schedule, project charter, communications plan, requirements document, design document, deployment plan, test plan, maintenance transition plan, RAID log, and notification of project end. Oversees program change control process (SCR’s)

In collaboration with appropriate colleagues, determines the scope, budget, and resources for Phoenix projects based on historical information, input from other staff, and high-level technical understanding of project tasks.  Holds project meetings internally and externally to ensure proper level of project-related communication, including project kickoff meeting to establish/confirm roles, regularly scheduled project team meetings to track progress, stakeholder meetings to provide status, post-implementation meeting with customers to ensure that project criteria have been fully met, and lessons learned meeting to gather feedback for use in future projects.

Measures and reports transformation performance, milestones, and other project information to project stakeholders and senior management on a regular basis, including escalating issues that require management attention. Leads risk, actions, issue and decisions management for the Phoenix portfolio. Ensures measures are taken in projects to increase quality and mitigate risk, including risk analyses, impact assessment, needs assessment, requirements signoff, code reviews, test planning and execution, fallback plans, and deployment plans.

Aligns and collaborates with Human Resources/OCM with our change management efforts, CAS Strategic PMO, and other existing mechanisms wherever possible to drive changes into core business processes. Partner with our HR team to develop plans to address not just the process changes, but the cultural changes needed for our success. Collaborates with HR colleagues and leadership to define and monitor status of key stakeholders / business readiness activities for deployment.

Drives tactical activities required to ensure integration with other enterprise initiatives. Ensures appropriate transformation hand-off and closure occurs, including holding the final retrospective/lessons learned sessions, and leveraging learnings to improve cross-matrix team project practices.

Displays collaborative leadership and ensures alignment across diverse stakeholders through business leadership of ideation, intake, initiation, planning, execution, and closure stages. Establishes and safeguards partnership and alignment across diverse groups to transform Content Operations with optimized and aligned processes, practices, policies, tools, technologies, and culture in Content Operations. 

Manages talent and culture using best practices. Creates positive, respectful environment in which people desire to work. Creates shared vision and defines clear roles and objectives. Builds employee engagement, inspires teams, appreciates and recognizes efforts and results, coaches and provides feedback. Fosters career development, builds bench strength. Enhances culture across teams led personally and among the Content Operations organization. Champions cultural and other changes that enable transformation, using best practices and in tandem with CO leadership and Human Resources. Embeds skills, changes mindsets, and builds culture to continuously improve and innovate.

Establishes and sustains customer experience top-of-mind for leadership and transformation teams, balancing transformation needs with operations needs in ways that positively affect customers and our CAS brand. Partners with peers to achieve current state service levels during transformation initiatives.


Minimum Education/Experience/Competencies/Technological Knowledge

15 or more years’ experience in in project management with a strong proven concentration of work in large digital transformation.

Bachelor’s Degree required and Master’s/Advanced Degree preferred in business, management, information systems, computer science or a related field. MBA strongly preferred.

Proven ability to lead large, complex digital transformation program/portfolio across the organization and with senior leaders

Demonstrated capability to manage projects/programs with multi-million dollar budgets leading these projects to successful implementation and life cycle.

Strong knowledge of program, process, and change management techniques; structured approaches to problem solving, decision making, and business strategy.

Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office Suite (particularly Word, Excel & PowerPoint).  Knowledge of project management software required.



Project Management Professional certification (PMP) required; agile program and project management certifications (e.g. PSM, CSM, SPC) preferred



Ability to engage with senior leaders to represent the organization and defend governance practices to maintain alignment with CAS and organization objectives and priorities. 

Strong leadership competencies for hiring, managing, coaching and developing staff. Outstanding leadership success through engaging, coaching, developing, and inspiring high performance.

Developer of talent and capabilities: Identifies and cultivates essential skills and attributes to maximize individual contribution and engagement and ensure right people, right skills, and right time.

High-energy, passionate, positive and contagious enthusiasm for CAS and our future

Respect, credibility, and influence with employees, peers, and c-suite

Creates high-engagement environment of shared vision, strategy, goals, role clarity optimism, coaching, developing, and mentoring

Builder of organization where people want to work with culture of optimism, respect, and high-trust

Sees, thinks, and acts solutions and opportunities instead of problem and obstacles

Strong intellectual ability paired with high emotional



Excellent verbal, written, and interpersonal communication skills. Ability to guide and facilitate leadership to effective decision making and present status information to management and executive teams.

Organizational Agility:  Must have the ability to navigate and influence successfully across a complex, highly-matrix environment among all organizational levels. Exceptional influence without authority and excellent collaboration skills.


Portfolio/Program Management

Program and Project Governance:  Deep subject matter expertise in project management methodologies encompassing both formalized programs, projects and out-of-cycle request.

Data Analysis/Interpretation:  Ability to convert general data and findings into applied, specific information and suggestions that add value to business planning and program evaluation.

Program Project Management:  Ability to manage projects to ensure successful deliver (on time, within budget, meeting agreed upon success criteria) to establish clear goals and accountabilities.  Also includes the ability to develop project plans, allocate resources, identify potential issues/risks and develop contingency plans.

Key Performance Measures:  Significant in executing on comprehensive performance measures and metrics by which to assess program performance, looking at company and organization objectives and strategies, cost/spend data, quality, schedule, resources return on investment, and other measurement variables. 

Program Lifecycle Disciplines: Strong knowledge of the integrated systems lifecycle development utilizing different – and sometimes – multiple development models (e.g., agile, waterfall, hybrid, etc.)


CAS offers a competitive salary and comprehensive benefits package, including a generous vacation plan, medical, dental, vision insurance plans, and employee savings and retirement plans. Candidates for this position must be authorized to work in the United States and not require work authorization sponsorship by our company for this position now or in the future. EEO/Minority/Female/Disabled/Veteran

Nearest Major Market: Columbus

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