NCP Deputy Director (Operations) At Palladium International

About Palladium

Palladium is a global leader in the design, development and delivery of Positive Impact – the intentional creation of enduring social and economic value. We work with governments, businesses, and investors to solve the world’s most pressing challenges. With a team of more than 3,000 employees operating in 90 plus countries and a global network of over 35,000 experts, we help improve economies, societies and, most importantly, people’s lives.

About Program

The New Colombo Plan Managed Administrative and Support Services (NCP MASS) is a signature initiative of the Australian Government that aims to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific in Australia by supporting Australian undergraduates to study and undertake internships in the region. Students undertake Scholarship programs, participate in Mobility projects, and on completion join an Alumni program. The strat egic objective of the NCP is to strengthen Australia’s regional standing by building a diverse cohort of Australian alumni with deeper Indo-Pacific knowledge, capability, and connections, contributing to the development of enduring people-to-people and institutional links, as part of the Australian Government’s public and economic diplomacy.

Palladium is contracted by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to manage the NCP MASS which underpins the effective operation of the Scholarship, Mobility, and Alumni programs, and provides the cross-cutting functions of finance and funds Management, communications, business engagement, risk management, and monitoring, evaluation, and learning. The program provides these services to the DFAT New Colombo Plan Secretariat (NCS) who oversees the program and leads on all NCP strategy, policy, and key stakeholder relationships.


The Deputy Director (Operatio ns) is responsible for providing coordinated and effective support for the NCP MASS in accordance with contractual requirements and program management systems. The Deputy Director (Operations) is responsible for the day-to-day operational management and delivery of all support services in accordance with the contract. Working closely with the Director, NCP MASS, and NCP Management Team, the Deputy Director ensures a consistent, seamless, and high-quality experience for all NCP stakeholders and DFAT. Services are to be delivered in accordance with the contracted schedule of services, Palladium management systems, and approved performance targets.


The role is a full-time, fixed-term role until 30 June 2025, Adelaide or Brisbane is preferred, however, Canberra would be considered.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

Establish, develop, and report against a contract management plan and ensure compliance with key contractual obligations.
Lead the development and maintenance of standard operating procedures including the operations manuals, for use by program staff to enable efficient and effective service delivery.
Manage contract variations and extensions.
Oversee development of Requests for Quotation responses in relation to Additional Services DFAT may request under the Head Contract, and management of any resultant Work Orders.
Establish, manage, and monitor all operational budgets and forecasts in collaboration with Managers.
Oversee the finance team to manage accounts receivable and payable financial processes.
Ensure client invoices and program expenditure reports are delivered in accordance with deadlines and contractual requirements.
Lead on procurement processes, ensuring alignment with Commonwealth Procurement Rules, as well as Palladium and NCP MASS standard operating procedures.
Ensure processes deliver value for money and inclusive outcomes.
Develop and manage a procurement plan aligned with the project work plan.
Undertake contract negotiations with subcontracted personnel and providers.
Oversee management of all contracts and supplier relationships.
Maintain a strong relationship with DFAT NCP Secretariat personnel.
Participate in key discussions, meetings, and events with the client and key stakeholders, including leading the Contract Manager’s Group meeting.
Oversee the recruitment process for all program staff.
Support the Director in the design and delivery of program and team performance management and learning and development frameworks.


1. Demonstrated senior project management experience in government or international donor (preferably DFAT) project and contract experience, including:

technical contract management.
the use of project management tools to effectively plan, implement, monitor, and evaluate activities.
experience in procurement and contractor management.

2. Experience in contract compliance, delivery of quality management systems, and implementation of standard practices and continuous improvements.
3. Demonstrated excellence in client management and stakeholder engagement to maintain engaged and productive relationships.
4. Highly developed interpersonal and communication skills, including business writing skills and the ability to influence a wide range of stakeholders.
5. Experience in building high performing and resilient teams of at least 10-15 personnel supported by constructive supervision, performance development, and role modelling a culture of high performance.


Experience working in the tertiary education sector, particularly with regard to knowledge of scholarships and outbound student mobility programs and/or administration of programs for sponsored students.
Experience in grants or funds management an advantage.

Choose Palladium for

If you are looking for an opportunity that will allow you to create a positive impact in the international community development space, then this is the place for you.

Applications will close 21 December 2023.

Please note – we are only accepting applications from job seekers with full working rights within (country) as this role is unable to be sponsored.
We are not accepting resumes from recruitment agencies for this role.

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

Palladium is committed to embedding equity, diversity, and inclusion into everything we do. We welcome applications from all sections of society and actively encourage diversity to drive innovation, creativity, success and good practice. We positively welcome and seek to ensure we achieve diversity in our workforce; and that all job applicants and employees receive equal and fair treatment regardless of their background or personal characteristics. These include: (but are not limited to) socio-economic background, age, race, gender identity and expression, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, nationality, veteran, marital or Indigenous status.

Should you require any adjustments or accommodations to be made due to a disability or you are a neurodivergent individual or for any other circumstance, please email our team at an d we will be in touch to discuss.


We define Safeguarding as “the preventative action taken by Palladium to protect our people, clients and the communities we work with from harm”. We are committed to ensuring that all children and adults who come into contact with Palladium are treated with respect and are free from abuse. All successful candidates will be subject to an enhanced selection process including safeguarding-focused interviews and a rigorous due diligence process.


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February 2024