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Chief Operations Officer

Role purpose

To manage the operations of the business and to provide leadership to the relevant Business Services Directors, to deliver a suite of services to the business seamlessly and within budget and to lead transformation and process improvement across the firm.

Key accountabilities

The Chief Operations Officer (COO) will support the Managing Partner (MP) in the efficient operational running of the firm, through the delivery of the business’s strategic objectives and business plan.

  • Effectively lead transformation and process improvement by personal example and excellent communication, supported by good technical understanding of the systems and processes involved
  • Exemplify the Culture and Values of the business in Business Services, delivering high quality services to internal customers and on occasion external clients
  • Manage the Business Directors with operational responsibility for HR, IT, Clients & Markets, Operations, Practice Governance & Risk and in collaboration with the Director of Business Finance, Finance Shared Services 
  • Chair the Business Services Executive
  • Sit on the Executive Board, contributing fully to strategy and key decisions
  • Own the Business Services Budget and collaborate with Finance in overseeing the Business Services budget process
  • Ensure that appropriate skills training and development are in place and that a pipeline of talent is identified for succession 
  • Work with the Managing Partner to oversee the appointment and management of Senior Personnel in each Business Services Function

Strategy & Business Plan delivery:

  • Support the Executive in developing, communicating and delivering the firm's strategy on an ongoing basis.
  • Support the formulation, communication and delivery of business and operational plans, ensuring connectivity and consistency between Business Services and the Sectors and Clusters through which we provide client services.
  • Proactively develop and maintain an external network that facilitates access to best practice in other firms/industries. Feedback knowledge gained through these networks for the benefit of the business.
  • Work with the CSG CEO and CSG COO to ensure appropriate resource at an appropriate cost for the CSG business.

Operational Delivery:

  • Responsible for the line management of the operational aspects of the Business Services functions, leadership of the Business Services group overall, budgeting, cost control and ensuring that an efficient and cost effective service is provided through monitoring, reporting and commercial scrutiny.
  • Driving market leading improvements in operational process and performance. 
  • Accountable for the successful delivery of strategic operational projects.
  • Ensure that robust data is available to the business to monitor business performance, trends and support strategic decision making.
  • Work with Cluster and Sector Heads to identify and implement solutions to issues/problems. 
  • Ultimate responsibility for supplier / outsource relationships and contracts


  • Member of Executive, periodic attendance by invitation at Board meetings and chair of Business Services Executive.
  • Work with the MP, the Executive, the Business Services Executive and the firm's comms team to ensure that a mechanism is in place for the clear and timely communication/cascade of key messages internally. 
  • Assist with the compilation of specific pieces of communication/comms strategies as and when required.
  • Maintain a regular dialogue with key stakeholders in the business to assist the MP in identifying and addressing emerging issues or themes within the business.
  • Facilitate the (appropriate) sharing of information and best practice across the business.

Performance Management & Talent:

  • Maintain a good understanding of emerging talent and business critical talent gaps in Business Services and, work with HR, to assist the MP nurture and develop talent and to address talent gaps.

The person

  • Previous experience in a leadership role with overall responsibility for a large team and a substantial budget.
  • Capable of strategic thought in the context of Professional Services businesses
  • Experience of managing other capable and diverse senior managers
  • Leader experienced in Change and Business Transformation, with track record of inspiring others to adapt and grow within a rapidly changing business environment
  • Familiarity with Process Improvement Frameworks, ideally with some exposure to formal process improvement systems
  • Financially literate with a good understanding of the drivers of financial performance in Professional Services businesses.
  • A diplomat, with excellent communications skills and experience of maintaining momentum if sectional interests diverge
  • A high level of personal compliance with firm protocols and procedures
  • Sophisticated people management skills including the ability to influence, motivate, coach and mentor team members at all levels. 
  • Strong understanding and experience of interrogating and utilising commercial KPIs and SLAs.
  • Demonstrable success in the area of reporting and budgetary/ cost control. 
  • Based in Bristol but flexible in terms of travel.

About the firm

With over 2,300 people, DAC Beachcroft combines one of the most comprehensive UK legal networks with coverage across Europe, Latin America, North America and Asia-Pacific. We provide a full service claims, transactional, commercial, risk and advisory capability. We work with clients in a select range of industry sectors and are market leaders in health, insurance and real estate. We are agile, progressive and easy to engage with.

We are committed to supporting the communities where we operate through charitable giving, pro bono work and programmes such as those operated by Business in the Community and The Prince's Trust.

In Chambers UK, the leading legal guide's 2017 edition, the firm received 57 rankings with 36 of our total listings in either Band 1 or Band 2, as well as 99 Ranked Lawyers.

In The Legal 500 UK 2016, one of the leading guides to law firms in the UK, the firm received 105 practice area rankings, over half of which are Tier 1 and 2. In addition to team rankings, 18 of our lawyers have been listed in the elite "leading individuals" list, some in multiple categories, and 161 colleagues are "recommended" in the editorial.

DAC Beachcroft holds certification under ISO9001, the quality assurance standard and ISO27001, the information security standard, and DAC Beachcroft LLP is the largest law firm in the country to hold a Gold Investors in People award

Application Details

DAC Beachcroft is an equal opportunities employer and we welcome applications from every sector of the community. We also welcome direct applications. If this opportunity sounds of interest to you, please make an application and submit your CV. Your application will be dealt with in the strictest of confidence.

Closing Date:

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