Director of Design & Research Operations

15 days ago
San Francisco, CA • fulltime


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Company Description

Thank you for your interest in Dropbox careers. We are actively hiring for this position and look forward to reviewing your application. Dropbox is continuing to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic as the health and safety of our community, employees and candidates remain our number one priority. We appreciate your flexibility as we adapt our hiring processes during this evolving situation.

Dropbox is the world’s first smart workspace that helps people and teams focus on the work that matters. With more than 600 million registered users across 180 countries, we’re on a mission to design a more enlightened way of working. Dropbox is headquartered in San Francisco, CA, and has 12 offices around the world.

Team Description

Our Research & Design team crafts delightful experiences that make people's lives easier. We're a close-knit, collaborative group, guided by a highly iterative user-centered design process. Combining research, data, and thoughtful critique, we're discovering needs and solving fundamental problems that impact work and life for millions of people around the world.

Role Description

This role sits within the Design Leadership Team and is integral to the heartbeat of the Design team at Dropbox.  Our Design org is 150+ people across functions and teams and distributed across San Francisco, New York, Seattle and Tel Aviv.  Acting as the operating partner to the VP of Design, you’ll be a critical driver in building up the Design organization’s operational muscle critical to our long term success and scale. You’ll be tasked with using your creativity, initiative, operational savvy and resolve to ensure the team is well positioned to execute. You’ll partner with Design leadership across org boundaries to create the business practices and operational infrastructure that frees our teams to deliver great customer experiences, build programs that engage and develop our team, and build connections with the community in meaningful ways. 
And you’ll be driving all this with the support of a growing Design & Research Operations team that supports our ability to connect with customers, actively engages our internal and external community with high value programming, and embeds in our product teams to improve the way we work and how work gets done. You’ll continue to evolve the charter of what Ops does (and doesn’t do) at Dropbox. We want someone who’s been in the trenches before, someone who knows how to see new ways around organizational challenges, and knows how to level up our capabilities to keep pace with the demands of the org.   
  • Closely partner with the VP Design and extended Design Leadership team to help drive decisions, ensure alignment, and connect dots across the work
  • Advise on organization wide strategy and planning
  • Introduce new practices and programs that enable makers to make delightful customer experiences (and help us sunset the practices that are getting in the way) 
  • Implement tools and practices to help the team create, collaborate and communicate better
  • Manage the communication strategy within Design to keep the team informed and motivated
  • Strike a balance between minimum viable process and allowing for creative freedom
  • Lead strategic initiatives in partnership with cross functional working groups
  • Own the annual planning and budget preparation process, as well as executive roll-ups
  • Maintain a pulse on the Design org, and orchestrate response to problem areas
  • Act as liaison and evangelize design with partner groups - HR, Recruiting, Finance, Legal, IT
  • Grow and mature the capabilities of a medium sized Design & Research Operations team
  • Own the strategy and roadmap execution for your team
  • Evolve team structures to optimally reflect changing organizational needs
  • Continually improve our people practices - hiring experience, talent management, employee engagement, diversity & inclusion, learning & development, and community programs
  • Proven strategic leader with 10+ yrs leadership experience, specifically having led a Design Operations and/or Research Operations team
  • Experience serving in a Chief of Staff or trusted advisory role to a Head of Design
  • Deeply familiar with the needs of designers, researchers and writers.
  • Has successfully lead a UX/Design/Research Operations function, as this role will be managing a team of 10 program management/operations specialists to start.
  • Methodical approach to project planning and change management
  • Experience planning and managing headcount and budgets
  • Experience on-boarding and managing software and services vendors
  • Experience building practices that are scalable across an organization
  • Analytical, structured thinking, with intentional prioritization strategy
  • As strong strategically as you are in the details - knows when/how to strike the balance
  • Often teaching those around you, sharing best practices and insights
  • Superb communication skills - written, verbal, and presentation
  • Experience with research participant recruitment practices.

Benefits and Perks
  • 100% company paid individual medical, dental, & vision insurance coverage
  • 401k + company match
  • Market competitive total compensation package
  • Free Dropbox space for your friends and family
  • Wellness Reimbursement
  • Generous vacation policy
  • 10 company paid holidays
  • Volunteer time off 
  • Company sponsored tech talks (technology and other relevant professional topics)
Dropbox is an equal opportunity employer. We are a welcoming place for everyone, and we do our best to make sure all people feel supported and connected at work. A big part of that effort is our support for members and allies of internal groups like Asians at Dropbox, BlackDropboxers, Latinx, Pridebox (LGBTQ), Vets at Dropbox, Women at Dropbox, ATX Diversity (based in Austin, Texas) and the Dropbox Empowerment Network (based in Dublin, Ireland).

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