This job listing has expired and may no longer be relevant!
3 Aug 2022

Operations / Administration Director of Talent Acquisition

Education First

Job Description

The Director of Talent Acquisition leads the development and implementation of strategic talent acquisition and oversees the evaluation of the recruiting function, strategies and processes to find areas of improvement. As Education First continues to work toward our goal of becoming a majority team of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC), the Director will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the firm. Not only will they bring a significant number of new hires to the team, but they will also lead on developing and refining new approaches for a scalable and sustainable recruiting function, including the development of new partnerships, deeper pipeline building work with an emphasis on leveraging our contractor pool and more sophisticated RIDE (Race, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity) strategies for our hiring efforts. 


About Education First

Education First is a mission-driven education policy consultancy dedicated to ensuring that all students – and particularly students in poverty and students of color – are prepared for success in college, careers and life. We work with organizations that are shaping the future of P-16 education across the nation, including school networks and districts, state departments of education, policy and advocacy organizations, youth empowerment organizations, talent organizations and foundations. 

We help these system leaders catalyze change through our services:

  • Conduct research and analysis on policies and provide contextual recommendations and strategic support to translate findings into concrete, sustainable action
  • Develop and implement visionary, coherent strategies and strategic plans by prioritizing inclusive voices, focusing on the right problems and providing space to explore
  • Plan and facilitate meaningful convenings for organizations and individuals to learn, problem solve, collaborate and advance their work
  • Design actionable and equitable solutions that meet client needs, achieve program goals and implement initiatives with clarity and quality
  • Support grantmakers, funders and foundations to develop thoughtful, high-impact investment strategies that align with their goals, interests and resources

We are a team of more than 60 former teachers, district and state education leaders, policy advisors and grant makers who live and work virtually in more than 20 states and DC. Because of our experience, we approach the challenges our clients face with humility, realistic solutions and a commitment to follow-through. Our culture is built on genuine care for our clients and for each other. We celebrate original thinking, collaboration, entrepreneurialism, authenticity and fun.


Our Equity Commitment

We recognize that in order to pursue our own organizational mission at Education First, we must approach our work by studying gaps and inequities, asking tough questions about structural racism and more deliberately engaging diverse voices in problem-solving. We’ve been building our own skills to deliver solutions that center racial equity, with particular attention to equitable ways of thinking and working, and we are committed to helping our clients do the same in projects that have a goal of increasing equity at their core. Within Education First, we have committed to building a race equity culture – creating the conditions to adopt antiracist mindsets and actions.

We believe:

  • Black lives matter. We are collectively responsible to amplify and support Black students, families and leaders.
  • People are experts in their own experience. We cannot effectively support our clients to problem solve and innovate without centering the people they aim to serve.
  • Racism and inequity were designed, and can be redesigned. People make up the systems, policies and processes that govern our experience, and we must support our clients to explore their role in reimagining what could be possible.

For greater detail about our Equity Commitment, please visit our website.


Primary Responsibilities

Reporting to the Chief People and Equity Officer, the Director of Talent Acquisition will be responsible for leading full-cycle recruitment efforts for all open roles with support from our Talent Coordinator and talent consulting partners. They will ensure that the talent acquisition process, the candidate experience, and operational side of our recruitment function are all high quality on a daily basis. The primary responsibilities of the Director of Talent Acquisition are: 

Recruitment & Hiring

  • Manage end-to-end candidate experience from initial sourcing and recruitment through hiring
  • Develop and update job descriptions, candidate marketing materials, selection rubrics and screening tools 
  • Document and proof guidelines for hiring practices within the firm
  • Recommend job posting options to maximize candidate diversity and skill, and conduct proactive candidate sourcing and outreach (e.g., social media, resume books, direct email) 
  • Actively recruit and source candidates for open roles, including executive level searches
  • Report hiring benchmarks relating to candidate diversity, time to fill, hiring manager and candidate satisfaction, cost per hire and onboarding experience and retention 
  • Manage, train and collaborate with the Talent Coordinator on recruitment and hiring efforts

Strategic Planning & Partnership

  • Develop and refine ongoing recruitment strategies and systems, including ensuring that recruitment efforts are legally compliant and RIDE-aligned 
  • Design and manage hiring committee process and practices
  • Lead the development of contractor/collaborator recruitment processes to help the firm extend capacity and act as a pipeline of candidates for open full-time roles 
  • Manage and cultivate all external recruitment relationships, including liaising with contract recruiters/firms, job boards, universities and other partners 
  • Implement strategies and partnerships that produce strong and diverse candidate pools for the firm’s full-time and contracted positions
  • Partner with the Chief People and Equity Officer, the Revenue and Analytics team and other staff members as needed to forecast future hiring needs and align recruitment with broader organizational priorities 

Coaching & Training 

  • Lead anti-bias trainings for hiring teams
  • Provide ongoing coaching and development that supports effective and equitable selection practices
  • Lead hiring systems trainings and provide implementation support as needed 


Experience & Qualifications

  • Seven to ten years of human resources experience with a strong focus on recruiting and talent acquisition, preferably in the education nonprofit and/or professional services/consulting context 
  • Hands-on experience with applicant tracking systems, Human Resource databases, social media platforms and remote hiring tools (e.g., video conferencing software) 
  • Expertise in applying principles of inclusion, diversity and equity to the recruitment and hiring process 
  • Proficiency in fostering long-term relationships with internal teams, external partners and candidates
  • Knowledge of labor and employment laws governing the recruitment process 
  • Familiarity with the national education landscape, including education nonprofits and funders
  • Proven ability to influence and partner with senior leadership and key stakeholders


Who You Are

  • You are committed to supporting the development of a Race Equity Culture
  • A strong decision-maker and resourceful problem-solver who is able to anticipate and adjust for unexpected barriers to success to execute change
  • You are dedicated to professional and personal growth through reflection, feedback and collaboration
  • Effective at managing multiple projects on tight deadlines and with quality 
  • A clear and compelling communicator, both verbally and in written materials 
  • Able to lead by influence, cultivating strong relationships with staff at all levels and offering coaching and support that maximizes quality 
  • A skilled executor who also has an eye for strategy and process improvement 
  • A values-driven leader that prioritizes the integrity of the hiring process in the midst of competing priorities and pressures, with particular attention to RIDE values


Location, Travel & Compensation

All positions are 100% remote and employees can live anywhere in the United States. You should be able to travel for firmwide engagements a few times a year (roughly 5-10% travel) if and when it is safe to do so from a public health perspective. 

Education First offers a market-based competitive salary, comprehensive benefits package (including PPO medical/dental/vision/life insurance), four weeks of paid time off, 11 paid national holidays, paid leave (disability/parental), teleworking subsidy, matching 401(k) plan, work-life flexibility and professional development opportunities. 

The full salary range for this position is $104,000 – $152,000. We typically set initial starting salaries between the minimum and the 25th percentile of the pay range $104,000 – $116,000, commensurate with experience, to ensure there is room for growth over time.

How to Apply

We are excited to receive applications from a broad range of applicants as we grow our team to better reflect the diversity of the communities our firm is committed to serve. Enthusiastic candidates should apply online to submit their resume and respond to the questionnaire describing how your qualifications match the job responsibilities. Please submit all completed application materials by August 28, 2022.  We plan to conduct screening interviews on a rolling basis and share performance tasks with select candidates. Interviews with top candidates will occur in September. Ideally, we’d like our Director of Talent Acquisition to start in October Education First actively engages our team with a robust Race, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (RIDE) strategy to build our staff and organizational capacity to lead on issues of equity and to increase diversity, equity and inclusion at all levels of the firm. As a proud equal opportunity employer, we strongly encourage applications from candidates of all races, national origins, ages, religions, creeds, veteran or disabled statuses, sexual orientations, gender identities or gender expressions. 

Bureaus: Chicago. Job Categories: Full-Time. Job Types: Operations / Administration.