Director, Content Acquisition Strategy & Operations

Date: Mar 14, 2023

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 115 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 a Director, Content Acquisition Strategy & Operations.  This position will be located in our headquarters in Columbus, Ohio.

Position Summary

The Content Acquisition Strategy & Operations is a key function within Content Operations’ ecosystem and an essential building block of CAS’s scientific Solutions.


CAS business model depends on the acquisition and ingestion of millions of documents from the best sources of scientific information available worldwide. The Director will oversee all strategic and tactical aspects of the CAS content acquisition process. The position is responsible for designing and executing a thorough, diverse, and ambitious content acquisition strategy meant to serve and support CAS’s solutions pipeline and growth strategy. The Director proactively evaluates a wide variety of data sources and data assets and creates a dynamic portfolio of content acquisition options CAS can leverage and monetize through our solutions and custom services. The function is responsible for managing a multi-million dollars content acquisition budget and for ensuring funds are spent responsibly for CAS’s best benefit.


Directly reporting to this role is the Assistant Director, Content Acquisition & Preparation who oversees a team of ~45-50 employees including 6 people managers.  Together and aligned with the Phoenix Transformation priorities, the Director and Assistant Director will modernize CO’s content acquisition and preparation process.

Position Accountabilities

  1. Creates a robust, ambitious content acquisition roadmap satisfying current needs and offering a wide range of future solutions and service opportunities through a proactive and visionary acquisition strategy. Ensure a high level of transparency on content acquisition strategy and tactics to allow CO and CAS stakeholders to manage content priorities against critical needs and budget constraints.


  1. Leverages private and public content sources and assets to build the most comprehensive, high-quality, and forward-looking content database.
    1. Consistently scan and monitor the market for new, high value content acquisitions.
    2. Proactively propose or suggest acquisition of content sources.
    3. Vet the quality of data assets through data sampling and analysis with Content Operations SMEs.


  1. Guides all stages of content acquisition operations through research, to identify and perform basic technical and creative evaluation of content.
    1. With product usage information, evaluate content impact on CAS solutions’ value and rank content sources.
    2. Negotiates long-term contracts with major publishers, and data asset owners in collaboration with Legal and Finance Departments. Establish and manage strong relationships with publishers.
    3. Make recommendations on potential portfolio changes and investment prioritization. Depending on budget availability for the acquisition of extra content or data assets, work in collaboration with CAS key stakeholders (mainly Content, Product and Finance) to promptly provide a list of ready-to-buy assets.


  1. Develop business fluency with Content Operations and CAS strategic business priorities.


  1. In collaboration with the Phoenix team (content curation process redesign), continue to modernize and improve content acquisition process and contribute to create a seamless transition with the Scientific Data Platform (SDP).


  1. 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. 



  1. Champions cultural and other changes that enable transformation, using best practices and in tandem with CO leadership and Human Resources.  Builds transformation capability across the Content Operations organization.  Embeds skills, changes mindsets, and builds culture to continuously improve and innovate.


  1. When necessary, leverage Content Operations Continuous Improvement (COCI) team, and Lean Six Sigma methodology to best utilize resources and improve output per dollar spent.


Education/Experience/Technological Knowledge

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry or applicable science-related discipline required. MBA, Master’s in science-related discipline is preferred.
  • Resourceful, senior leader with small to medium size organizations (25 to 50 employees) leadership experience including previous experience as a manager of managers.
  • At least 10 years of experience in Content Acquisition desired with a preference for professionals who experience with scientific publications and possibly patents content.
  • At least 5 years of experience in global organizations and/or collaborating with global colleagues.
  • Has established relationships with publishers and is familiar with various content sources and assets in Chemistry, Life Science, Material Science, and Energy.
  • Has experience in successfully leading and developing teams within highly fluid and rapidly changing organizations undergoing digital transformations.
  • Proven experiences leading large, complex, and simultaneous projects and work across the organization and with senior leaders
  • Outstanding demonstrated leadership success through engaging, coaching, developing, and inspiring high performance 
  • High fluency and knowledge of the content acquisition and content ingestion processes involving data analysis, auditing, normalization, enrichment, modeling, ETL, etc.
  • Comfortable with highly technical working environments (data, software solutions) and possess a solid understanding of big data management.
  • Can quickly identify organizations gaps, challenges, and opportunities. Can quickly implement organization change strategies to address issues and build on strengths to reach and surpass objectives and create opportunities for every employee.
  • Ability to engage and motivate a team through effective and respectful communication.
  • Ability to lead teams with multiple reporting levels and multiple simultaneous projects with minimal supervision.
  • Thrive in a diverse, multi-cultural and multi-linguistic environment.
  • Ability to differentiate between strategic decisions and the tactical level and manage and prioritize resources and time accordingly.
  • Able to think clearly and calmly in challenging business and day-to-day work situations. Also capable of managing a certain level of business ambiguity and pressure especially close to deadlines or within highly complex project with tight deliverables.
  • Available, personable leader who can coach and mentor their employees and who understands that team success cannot be achieved if individual performance isn’t tracked and at its best.
  • Executive presence and ability to present and communicate with various audiences.
  • Empower their teams. Practice trust-based leadership where delegation and autonomy are encouraged. Lead by example, talent developer.
  • Organized - skilled at multitasking, prioritizing, and working under tight deadlines and high volume.
  • Analytically savvy – have strong critical thinking and analytical capabilities
  • Detail oriented - skilled at recognizing and troubleshooting errors
  • 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.
  • Strong communication, organizational savvy, interpersonal skills with executives to drive alignment
  • Drives Innovation and Continuous improvement: Focuses on areas of highest potential.  Ensures that the innovation and improvement pipeline aligns to strategy and goals


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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