Executive Director, Talent Development & Engagement

University of British Columbia

Staff – Non Union

Job Category
M&P – Excluded M&P

Job Profile
XMP – Human Resources, Level F

Job Title
Executive Director, Talent Development & Engagement

Communities of Expertise Central Human Resources

Compensation Range
$11,198.58 – $17,497.83 CAD Monthly

The Compensation Range is the span between the minimum and maximum base salary for a position. The midpoint of the range is approximately halfway between the minimum and the maximum and represents an employee that possesses full job knowledge, qualifications and experience for the position. In the normal course, employees will be hired, transferred or promoted between the minimum and midpoint of the salary range for a job.

Posting End Date
August 22, 2023

Note: Applications will be accepted until 11:59 PM on the day prior to the Posting End Date above.

Job End Date

At UBC, we believe that attracting and sustaining a diverse workforce is key to the successful pursuit of excellence in research, innovation, and learning for all faculty, staff and students. Our commitment to employment equity helps achieve inclusion and fairness, brings rich diversity to UBC as a workplace, and creates the necessary conditions for a rewarding career. 

Job Summary
This position is responsible for creating the vision and strategy, resourcing and infrastructure to enhance professional growth and performance of employees that aligns with the strategic direction of the University and the changing nature of work.
The role will identify the critical elements to be included in the vision such as the design and delivery model for workplace learning initiatives and appropriate organizational development solutions. The role will also advocate for the appropriate infrastructure and technical solution to support workplace engagement and learning across the University. This role will also lead the organizational change management strategy and its implementation.
In partnership with individuals in key University leadership roles, the Executive Director, Talent Development & Engagement, continually assesses the organizational needs of the University, formulates and recommends strategies to the Associate Vice President, Human Resources. Provides guidance and advises University management in articulating and communicating their vision and mission for the purpose of contributing to strategic planning, and human resource development and engagement initiatives, in advancing the overall goals of the University.
The Executive Director leads a diverse team of HR professionals who are focused on building the capacity of the University to make sound people decisions and invest in the future of our workforce through creating an environment that fosters wellbeing and where faculty and staff can thrive, engage, have meaningful conversations and access innovative workplace learning opportunities.

Organizational Status

Reports to the Associate Vice President, Human Resources, and is a member of the HR Leaders Team. Works collaboratively with colleagues across the VP Human Resources portfolio.

Works collaboratively with diverse groups of academic and administrative stakeholders from across the University, often representing the HR portfolio on University-wide committees or initiatives.

Leads a team focused on developing leadership, performance enablement, succession planning, change management, internal communications, workplace engagement, coaching and learning.
Work Performed

Major Responsibilities:


  • Establishes a vision for workplace learning & engagement that resonates and meets the needs of the workplace today and prepares employees for the workplace of the future.
  • Fosters an environment where innovative workplace and learning practices can flourish.
  • Understands and facilitates the integration of human resource initiatives with other University initiatives. Advocates for Human Resources involvement in initiatives that may not on the surfaces appear to have people implications.
  • Influences leaders and stakeholders within the University to lead, integrate, adopt, and champion human resource initiatives so that initiatives impact all levels of the organization.
  • Provides annual reports to the University Executive and Board of Governors on key HR priority areas such as workplace metrics and progress against strategic priorities.
  • Recommends and advocates for the appropriate workplace learning ecosystem to support both organizational and individual learning needs. Establishes, directs, and maintains the learning ecosystem to ensure effective learning outcomes.
  • Provides strategic leadership to workplace learning, leadership development, change management, workplace engagement, and communications functions.


Leadership and Learning

  • Oversees and leads the vision of an organizational approach to workplace learning that is sustainable and aligns with the needs of the organization.
  • Invests in learning opportunities that build the capacity of the University to create a safe, respectful work environment.
  • Oversees the planning, directing, and evaluating professional development and workplace learning programs.
  • Leads a team of professionals to identify, develop, and implement methods, instructional strategies, and learning technologies in the design, implementation, and evaluation of professional development activities, including but not limited to: face-to-face, synchronous/asynchronous eLearning and blended learning.
  • Ensures the advancement and alignment of programs for specific levels of leadership are rooted in the University’s Leadership Framework.
  • Advocates and provides access to opportunities that support leaders’ ongoing growth and development.
  • Oversees and directs all activities related to planning, development, implementation, and evaluation of professional development strategies and initiatives.
  • Collaborates with partners across the University to ensure that all curriculum reflects diverse perspectives, cultures and experiences. Directs the integration of inclusive instructional strategies that address the needs of all learners and promote equitable access to high-quality learning.
  • Leads the collaboration with internal learning providers across the University to identify synergies and opportunities to position offerings within the construct of workplace learning.
  • Continues to develop a vision for how to evolve and imbed the coaching culture across the organization. Directs the development of a sustainable program that will intersect with other organizational program areas such as Continuing Studies Certificate in Coaching and ALDP. Oversees the administration of the University professional development funds.
  • Continuously assess learning and development needs and identify trends and changes in workplace learning and professional development environments and evaluate and adjust plans and processes accordingly.

Performance Enablement

  • Leads the performance enablement framework, process, systems and training.
  • Leads the development of training for leaders on performance enablement best practices.
  • Analyzes performance data to identify trends and areas for improvement.
  • Provides reporting at the institutional level and recommendations for the VPHR.
  • Collaborates with the HR community and leaders to ensure performance enablement practices are fair, consistent, and aligned.
  • Directs the review and updates of the performance enablement programs to ensure effectiveness and relevance.


Workplace Engagement

  • Leads workplace engagement initiatives that directly impact faculty and staff’s experience at UBC from the orientation and onboarding experience to how people grow their careers and create connections across the organization.
  • Oversees the direction on how to position UBC as an employer of choice, including developing strategies to highlight UBC’s employer story (brand) internally and externally.
  • Oversees the implementation of a robust multi-faceted integrated orientation program that will ensure the effective orientation and onboarding of new staff and faculty. Ensures that the program is built on robust learning pedagogy and is responsive to the needs of the organization and the individual.
  • Champions opportunities and initiatives across the University that contributes to employee engagement.
  • Aligns initiatives that encourage respectful dialogue and communications that align with the Respectful Work Environment Statement.
  • Leads a team that evaluates workplace engagement levels and identifies strategies to respond to findings.
  • Positions HR communications in a way that support workplace engagement and aligns with UBC’s employer story.
  • Implements strategies that move the organization towards performance and career conversations.


Change Management

  • Oversees the development of change and transition strategy, principles and practices that will align with UBC’s overall human resources people practices and principles.
  • Leads University-wide high-level change assessment and evaluations taking an enterprise-wide view. Identifies impacts, risks and inter-dependencies with other University-wide initiatives.
  • Provides the AVP, Human Resources with regular reports and updates on change initiatives that are occurring across the University, including the provision of success metrics, tangible outcomes resulting from change planning, and options for problem resolution. Identifies where change fatigue is occurring organizationally due to competing change priorities.
  • Oversees the strategies to manage impacts, risks and inter-dependencies with other University-wide initiatives.



  • Provides ongoing professional development opportunities for staff to enhance their understanding of equity, diversity, and inclusion in the learning environment.
  • Establishes benchmarks and indicators to assess progress of all learning goals and programs. Regularly evaluates programs to determine their effectiveness and make data-informed adjustments when necessary.
  • Assesses and evaluates the ways in which human resource services are delivered.
  • Forecasts, develops, plans and analyzes resources requirements and ensures that appropriate resources are in place to meet the expected initiative/project outcomes.
  • Manages external contract arrangements.
  • Responsible for the management of the University’s learning budget and professional development funds.
  • Establishes strong relationships with external human resource professionals in both the public and private sectors to ensure that UBC remains conversant in emerging human resource trends and practices.
  • Performs other duties as required.

Consequence of Error/Judgement
Failure to identify organizational priorities and lead initiatives to a satisfactory conclusion may result in reputational, people and financial loss. In addition, poor leadership may negatively impact on relations with the many stakeholders that Human Resources regularly interacts with, including negatively impacting the University’s public image and reputation.
Supervision Received
Works within broad policies and strategic plans under senior executive direction, results reviewed for achievement of long-term objectives. Keeps Associate Vice President informed of actions through reports and discussions. Initiatives are independently led through subordinate senior staff and are usually subject to final review only. Unusual items requiring policy decisions are brought to the Associate Vice President’s attention.
Supervision Given
Directs and manages a group of management, professional and support staff, and external consultants, often indirectly through subordinate managers.
Minimum Qualifications

  • Willingness to respect diverse perspectives, including perspectives in conflict with one’s own.
  • Demonstrates a commitment to enhancing one’s own awareness, knowledge, and skills related to equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in a relevant field or the equivalent combination of education and experience. An emphasis on organizational development, leadership and management development, training, change management, and human resources management required.
  • 10 – 15 years of related progressive experience with demonstrated business knowledge skills in leadership development, coaching, and workplace learning, and in understanding and applying management, supervisory and business skills.
  • Demonstrates an understanding and respect for the University’s culture and environment and its employees. Is able to relate to a diverse group of individuals and positions and is able to facilitate the group consensus.
  • Able to inspire, lead and encourage people to engage in a common goal.
  • Commitment to personal learning, development and improvement in pursuit of own objectives and those of the team and organization.
  • Possesses and demonstrates excellent conflict resolution and mediation skills. Exercises judgment when taking risks.
  • Knowledge of a variety of HR disciplines including emerging trends in the follow areas of specialty: leadership and employee development, training, engagement, performance enablement, succession planning, and change management.
  • A strategic thinker who keeps the long-term vision clearly in view, and who is able to influence in a distributed decision-making environment.
  • Ability to draw on a breadth of business knowledge and depth of HR expertise is required to understand the implications of the project and the subject expertise to manage the project.
  • Innovative, creative and is able to look beyond the immediate problem when directing multiple strategic initiatives.
  • Substantive experience working with senior executive.
  • Ability to establish and build effective and trusting working relationships, in addition to being credible and influential with senior leadership. Understand the reciprocal nature of relationships.
  • Ability to influence the direction of complex initiatives when not necessarily leading the initiative.
  • Ability to balance detail/analytical skills with the need for strategic/philosophical direction.
  • Responsive and productive, able to deal with complex demands for critical audiences.
  • Articulate with superb oral and written presentation and communication skills.
  • Effective in conveying concepts and initiatives to others in a manner that secures a motivated engagement in work objectives.
  • Ability to simultaneously manage multiple projects with limited resources.
  • Adaptable, works well with change, challenge-oriented.
  • Effective self-manager; able to plan and organize a heavy and diverse workload.
  • Demonstrated record of meeting deadlines.
  • Solid judgment; particularly when dealing with confidential and sensitive information.

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