“Living successfully in a world of systems requires more of us than our ability to calculate. It requires our full humanity — our rationality, our ability to sort out truth from falsehood, our intuition, our compassion, our vision, and our morality.”
Donella Meadows, Dancing with Systems
Careful Trouble is made up of Careful Industries and Promising Trouble. Careful Industries is a research consultancy. We work with clients to understand the social impact of technologies and technology policies. Our sister organisation Promising Trouble is a social enterprise whose work puts community power at the heart of technology and innovation. Our work centres equity and social justice, with a network of clients and associates distributed internationally.
We are a remote first team, and all team members work across both organisations. Our staff come together for team development events at least twice a year. Attendance at these meetings may involve travel within the UK.
- Care is the organising principle for everything we do: care for and about people and the planet, combined with a rigorous and diligent approach to investigating uncertainty.
- We are constantly learning, always curious, and strive to be inclusive and accepting.
- We champion careful innovation and feminism for the 99%.
- We are wayfinders not competitors.
- We ask good questions, seek useful answers, and listen closely
- We are impatient for change, but careful in our actions
- We use our power to state the unsaid and make space for others
- We look after each other so we can make careful trouble together.
People are at the heart of everything we do. Our Research Project Manager plays an important role working across both organisations to:
- Plan, coordinate and manage assigned research projects
- Manage projects to completion within allotted timelines and budgets
- Support the development of our wider network of partners and collaborators, including community-facing projects
- Ensure overall there is a positive experience of collaborating or engaging with Careful Trouble in any interaction.
We are looking for a Research Project Manager who can develop and grow our approach to project management, and co-create and embed best practices and appropriate ways of working.
We are a small, relatively new organisation, gradually delivering larger and more complex projects, and our project-management practices are still developing. We undertake complex research projects that embrace uncertainty and sometimes include many local and international stakeholders and collaborators. Our work is often exploratory and speculative, but we also have budgetary constraints and deadlines to meet and we need to balance the two.
We use Asana and Slack to keep track of activities, but this is a work-in-progress and we are yet to settle on a project-management methodology that fits with our values.
The Research Project Manager will also play an important role in our community-facing work, whether helping to grow the community of practice for our Community Tech programme, or developing strong relationships with other stakeholders and local communities as part of our work to roll out our very affordable broadband in south London.
Reporting to the Head of Research, this role will liaise with staff, stakeholders, clients and a number of freelancers. At Careful Trouble, we operate a matrix management approach and our Head of Operations leads on governance care for all staff members.
This role requires flexibility and adaptability and the post holder needs to be aware that the role’s tasks and responsibilities may change according to the needs of the organisation. We will always strive to maintain a healthy work life balance and will work with the post holder to achieve this.
The role will initially work primarily on our Community Tech programme, which we are delivering with Power to Change. This programme includes multiple research projects, a funding programme, an evaluation programme and a community of practice, as well as building a new network of collaborators and other stakeholders.
While the role is mainly focused on timely and high quality project management and delivery, there is some scope to tailor it to suit the skills and ambitions of the individual that is recruited.
Duties & Responsibilities
Note: At the moment, our meetings and events are all online-first; over time we may do more hybrid and/or in person events, and we will address how to support these events as the need arises.
- Build a programme overview that combines all activity across Careful Trouble and enables better resource allocation and business forecasting;
- Monitor the progress of projects. This includes overseeing time spent, budget spend, risks and issues;
- Spot when things aren’t going to plan and work effectively with colleagues to solve any problems that arise, in a collaborative and open-minded way;
- Facilitate and programme project events, such as project kick-offs, retros, and research collaboration meeting;
- Develop and embed project management processes that everyone can contribute to;
- Work with the Research Projects Coordinator to document best practice;
- Work with other team members as appropriate to develop and cost research proposals and bids;
- Work with other team members as appropriate to scope and design new projects.
Operations and Resource Management
- Monitor staff and freelance utilisation across projects, sharing any useful observations with colleagues as needed;
- Monitor project progress regularly and share updates with colleagues, client and partners as needed;
- Communicate project information and status to all relevant parties, raising any issues with colleagues in a timely and useful way;
- Contribute to developing our accessibility and inclusion best practice across the organisation;
- Design and embed responsive feedback and evaluation mechanisms;
- Assist in developing Promising Trouble governance/oversight and project advisory board.
Communications and Relationship Management
- Manage and develop multiple relationships – with colleagues, partners, clients and collaborators - in a professional and approachable way;
- Develop useful processes for coordinating and growing communities;
- Ensure all research and community development projects adhere to our safeguarding guidelines and research ethics policies, and that all appropriate permissions and waivers are collected and managed in compliance with our data protection policy;
- Develop an accessibility strategy and best-practice playbook for any workshops or events we run, taking into consideration barriers to participation
- Ensure our contact lists are maintained in secure and efficient ways that are compliant with our data protection policy and also enable us to build a network of contacts
Skills and experience
- Project management experience in small, digitally savvy teams or organisations
- Experience of setting up and embedding new systems
- Experience of resource and account management in an agency setting
- Comfortable with digital tools, including Google Workspace, Asana, Airtable, Slack, etc.
- Ability to prioritise and work across multiple projects and programmes
- An interest in the social impacts of technologies
- Excellent interpersonal skills;
- Great attention to detail and excellent analytical skills
- Creative and effective facilitation of meetings and workshops
- Production and analysis of statistics and reports
- Translating proposals into deliverable projects
- Experience of project management in a not for profit, research-focused organisation/ environment;
- Experience/ knowledge of research skills and activities;
- Experience/ knowledge of evaluation methods and activities;
- Experience/ knowledge of community building, engagement and facilitation of community-facing activities.
- Salary between £38,000 and £42,000 depending on experience
- Full Time - (3-5 days flexible)
- Fixed-Term Contract 12 Months
- Remote First Company and Flexible Working
- 25 Days’ Holiday plus Bank Holidays
- Remote Working Allowance £1,500 (to include Laptop).
How to Apply
To apply for this role please follow this link to the online application form, sending us a CV and Cover letter addressing the questions below.
This job advert closes on 17th October 2022 with interviews taking place week commencing Monday 30th October 2022. We hope to have someone in post by January.
If you have any questions regarding this role, please contact email@example.com
Questions for application form
- Tell us about a time you have set up and embedded a project management process in a small team or organisation. Outline the process, and tell us how you created effective routines that your colleagues could implement. (no more than 500 words)
- Why do you want to join Careful Trouble? (no more than 100 words)