Head of Technology Partners

We’re The Very Group, home to Very.co.uk, Littlewoods.com and a team of 4,000 super-talented people.

We’re the UK’s largest integrated digital retailer and financial services provider, and we’ve been helping customers say yes when it matters most for over 100 years. In that time, we’ve consistently reinvented our business to adapt to economic conditions and industry changes – going from bricks, to clicks, to mobile.

But despite our passion for reinvention, we’ve never wavered from our purpose; to make good things easily accessible to more people. It means giving our customers the brands they love, an outstanding shopping experience and flexible ways to spread the cost.

We’ve continued to deliver for our customers throughout the Covid-19 outbreak – and we’ve done it by transforming the way we work. The role itself will be a mix of on-site vs remote, we’ve adapted well to remote ways of working and will continue to embrace those practices moving forward.

We’re fired up for the future and the next stage in our development. We’ll give customers access to more great brands for themselves and their families, a seamless shopping experience and even more control of their finances through innovation in flexible ways to pay.

Ready to reinvent?

About the role

Reporting into our Tech Ops Director, we’re looking for an experienced Head of Technology Partners to take overall accountability for strategy with our technology partners across The Very Group. Identifying new opportunities to ensure market fit of products and services based on current sector trends and anticipated further market developments.

As the Head of Technology Partners, you wlll have line management of three direct reports. Develop an in-depth understanding of the Partner’s business objectives and effectively communicate and align with The Very Group to drive incremental growth.

Here you will ensure a detailed knowledge of the technology partnerships to be able to recognise and manage at any early stage any issues and to escalate, where necessary.

You’ll have the full ability to create and manage a framework for lifecycle management of partners (selection, onboarding, reviews, termination, billing) to generate value jointly and value add from partners services, e.g. infra, network, SaaS apps, agile delivery partners.

We’ll also lean on your experience in Identifying technology partnerships that are complementary to and/or fill gaps in The Very Group suite and develop the relationships.

To be successful in this role, you’ll need to have a track record of introducing and updating effective contract management processes and a strong understanding of the financial and legal elements within contracts, you’ll also be used to Identifying new business opportunities with or through partners, develop plans for how The Very Group leverage these and gain agreement with requisite stakeholders on execution.

Day to day:

Developing the Tech Partners strategy, identifying and establishing relationships with technical partners. Developing business opportunities, communicating the company’s strategy, vision & updates to strategic partners. Representing the company to build potential new relationships.

You will be responsible for supporting technology in generating optimal solutions for new and existing partners. You will be fully conversant in all forms of IT licensing and software as a service arrangement to be able to negotiate agreements with input from legal, finance and key internal stakeholders for larger partners working with commercial finance to build business cases to support large scale investments.

Work alongside business directors and technology tribes to support the development of appropriate tech partner strategies for smaller contracts/partners.

Work with tribes, information security, governance teams and senior leaders within our business to articulate the key risks inherent in our contracts or tech partner systems ensuring those risks are visible and actively managed and are mitigated, where possible.

Requirements

  • Previous experience establishing high-value strategic partnerships
  • Experience in managing complex relationships
  • Vendor management
  • Procurement process management
  • Experience in combatting vendor issues, escalations etc
  • Experience in commercial elements to modern contracts, specifically around information security and data and key elements of how you protect your business from a contact point of view.
  • Proven track record of stakeholder management
  • Experience within Cloud / Web-Based / SaaS technology
  • Ability to build relationships and demonstrate excellent negotiation skills with various stakeholder groups
  • Strong negotiation skills
  • Strong organisational skills and rigorous attention to detail
  • Executive presence, strong business and financial acumen and the demonstrable ability to drive deals from ideas to outcomes
  • Ability to review and understand the core details of a contract, working closely with legal teams
  • A strong understanding of and practical experience in partnership development and management specifically within high-tech at both a strategic, tactical and operational level
  • Strategy, business planning formulation and execution experience, with measurable result
  • Experience managing complex relationships across multiple levels and disciplines
  • Ability to manage a complex selling environment where objectives between the Partner and The Very Group may not always be aligned
  • Demonstrated ability to quickly gain trust and credibility together with a willingness to challenge to protect the business.
  • Ability to deliver effective diplomatic communications as well as handle sensitive information and materials in a confidential manner
  • An excellent written and verbal communicator with a high level of business acumen
  • Ability to effectively work independently in a fast-moving environment
  • Passion to win, entrepreneurial, high energy, responsive, and results-driven self-starter.
  • Ability to deal well with change and be a team player, builder, and leader.
  • Excellent presentation skills and confidence

This is a fantastic opportunity for someone who is a passionate Leader looking for their next career move. If you’re interested to find out more please contact Steven Williams in the talent acquisition team at The Very Group or apply online.

Please note that the talent acquisition team are managing this vacancy directly, and if successful in securing this role, you may be required to undertake a credit, CIFAS and CRB check.

Please note this is an SMCR captured role.

We’re an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, colour, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

Benefits

  • £10,000 flexible benefits allowance
  • 30 days holiday + bank holidays + option to buy or sell 5
  • A flexible working culture
  • Onsite gym with over 25 classes
  • 25% discount on our Very.co.uk clothing and footwear, 15% off home and electricals
  • Health and wellbeing agenda
  • Private pension matched at 6%
  • Bonus potential (performance and business related)
  • On-site discounted restaurant and coffee houses
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Free on-site parking *Subject to availability and postcode eligibility
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