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Senior Project Manager


We are looking to recruit an experienced Senior Project Manager with commercial acumen and excellent problem solving capabilities to lead the successful delivery of projects in close cooperation with the project technical managers. Reporting to the Head of Project Management, the successful candidate must have a track record of delivering multiple technical projects simultaneously and within demanding constraints in a project-based technical environment - preferably with a research and development aspect. It must be a project manager used to working under pressure with excellent communication and interpersonal skills

As a Senior Project Manager your main responsibilities will include:

  • Take full ownership of the project management assignments from bid to closure.
  • Lead the project team to a successful project outcome, ensuring that customer requirements and business’ objectives are delivered profitably, on schedule and within budget.
  • Act as the prime point of contact with customer representatives for assigned projects, supporting negotiations with customers across ARA’s project portfolio, and supporting business development activities.
  • Lead and support the preparation of bids, supported by project and technical managers, including: estimating, risk management, planning (including preparation of product and work breakdown structures and schedules), proposal preparation and presentation.
  • Lead the project change management process, working with the project teams and the customer to effectively manage changes to requirements, timescales and associated costs while protecting ARA’s commercial interests.
  • Work with ARA’s project managers and resource managers to communicate and secure project resource requirements effectively, ensuring that information in ARA’s SAP business management system is useful and current.
  • Work with ARA’s project, technical and resource managers to effectively manage risks identified in project delivery including threat mitigation and opportunity exploitation. Continuous improvement activities form a fundamental part of how projects are delivered and smaller improvements are expected to be delivered as part of the project budget and within the project schedule.
  • Work closely with ARA’s financial management and procurement teams to support effective cash flow management; sales; orders and returns.
  • Prepare and present regular project status reports to senior management and customers supported by the project teams - escalating issues which breach project constraints - and offering solutions to overcome them.
  • Work with the Head of Project Management and the project management team to build project management skills, tools, techniques and processes - and help grow the project management capabilities and experience of technical leaders across ARA’s business streams.
  • Essential technical skills
    Provide the project teams with leadership, ensuring that communications with colleagues, customers and suppliers are clear.
    Work with project and resource managers to prepare a project schedule which is compliant with ARA’s available resource capacity (including subcontractors)
    The ability to understand technical information in unfamiliar disciplines with guidance from technical experts.
    Excellent spoken and written English.
    Proven experience of project leadership, ensuring that communications with colleagues, customers and suppliers are clear and consistent.
    Ability to understand customer requirements from a statement of work and prepare a product breakdown structure and resource estimate.
    Proven experience preparing a bid pack and supporting documentation including pricing estimate(s) and risk and opportunity register(s).
Required qualifications / skills
  • Whole life cycle of project management experience with a minimum of 3 years’ working experience.
  • University honours degree in a STEM/technically related discipline.
  • Demonstrable knowledge and experience of project management methodologies and tools.
Desirable qualifications / skills
  • A Master’s degree in Engineering, Mathematics, Physics or a related discipline.
  • A project management qualification.
  • Project management experience in sectors such as: defence aerospace; automotive; mechanical engineering
In addition, the successful candidate must demonstrate the following personal attributes:
  • Autonomous.
  • Imaginative and creative with good problem solving skills.
  • Competent in making critical decisions promptly.
  • Readily adaptable to rapidly changing circumstances.
  • Have a collaborative approach to problem solving with ability to influence.
  • Confident and self-motivated
  • Well organised
  • Flexible - occasional international travel and out of hours working required.
This is an exciting opportunity for the right person to be part of a successful and established precision manufacturing team operating in a world-class facility.  In return, we offer a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package.
• Salary
We offer competitive salaries for a basic 38 hour working week, with an aim to attract talented people with the skills and enthusiasm to help us succeed.  Future salary growth is linked to performance and contribution.
• Pension & Life Assurance
Company matched contributions to a nominated personal pension scheme. Life assurance cover from first day of employment.
• Private Medical Insurance
Free to all employees and cover can be extended to family.
• Holiday
26 days annual leave, increasing to 29 days with longer service; in addition to Bank/Public Holidays.
• Car Parking
There is ample free, and secure, car parking on site.
The successful candidate must satisfy security clearance requirements, including 5 years continuous UK residency.
To apply please send your CV with a covering letter to
Aircraft Research Association Ltd is proud to be an Equal Opportunities Employer