Head of HR Operational Excellence

KPMG Overview

Joining KPMG means joining a talented team of exceptional colleagues who bring innovative thoughts and a natural curiosity to the work they do each day. No one type of person succeeds at KPMG; a diverse business requires diverse personalities, characters and perspectives. There really is a place for you here.

Service Line Information

We believe working in our People community is an exciting and challenging environment in which to develop your career. We offer a wide range of opportunities across all areas of HR, where our people are highly respected by our clients, not only in the UK, but also across our growing European integrated practice.

Service Line Group


Job Description


Grade:   B 
Service Line:  OEH – KBS 
Reporting to:  Head of Operational Excellence  
Location:  Watford (with intermittent travel to other UK offices including Canary Wharf)

Function Information 

The People Function plays a pivotal role in supporting the delivery of the business strategy. To enable this, we are continually reviewing the way we recruit, develop and reward the people that work for KPMG to make sure that we attract and retain the very best and most diverse talent in the market place and enable them to achieve exceptional things for our clients and customers.  At the heart of our people strategy lies a simple but powerful statement – “our people are extraordinary” 

Department Information 

The People Operations team form part of the wider Operational Excellence Hubs and provide administrative and advisory support to our UK Business.  Through our ‘service pledge’ we underpin our overall People Strategy and Vision.

The operation consists of the following teams based in Watford: HR Shared Services, HR Technology and the HR Transformation team (circa 140 staff in total).

Our focus is customer centric and we are continuously considering how to exceed the expectations of our people across the business with the service we deliver.

Context of role

You will be empowered to lead and manage the delivery of our HR Operational Excellence Hub (OEH) offering HR Administration and HR Advisory services across a number of HR disciplines to KPMG UK. You will have a dual pen reporting line into the Head of Operational Excellence and the UK Head of People.

Working closely with the Head of HR Transformation, HR Leads, the wider HR and Learning teams, functional leads and your KBS and OEH Management Team, you will develop and drive service excellence ensuring the service is fit for purpose, client focused and supportive in progressing the overall UK People agenda. Managing the operating model and ensuring an efficient service without detriment to the experience of the service delivered to our colleagues.

You will manage 3rd party providers, ensuring the service provision supports our overall vision of creating an excellent experience for our colleagues, whilst operating within a controlled and governed framework.

Developing and managing the service delivery to agreed SLAs and within scope of budget of the HR OEH budget. Your focus on continuous improvement of service delivery will be gained through building and maintaining effective relationships with key internal and external customers.

You will drive a customer centric and continuous improvement culture across the operation, helping to develop our overall managed service strategy within KBS Business Services.

As a member of KPMG, you are expected to demonstrate the Firm’s values at all times. 

Role and Responsibilities 

• Work with key HR and KBS OEH stakeholders and potential vendors in helping to shape transactional HR strategic solutions across the business  
• Responsible for change management  and transition of key services into the OEH, identifying service efficiencies and opportunities to implement best in class service provision 
• Oversee and ensure timely, effective and a high level of service is continually provided from the shared service operation and our 3rd party providers. Driving capability across the operation with a robust and sustainable development programme in place for all colleagues and management roles.
• Implement and review periodical Customer Satisfaction Surveys across the client and stakeholder population to ensure that we continue to deliver and improve service levels 
• Responsible for the management and delivery of high-profile HR and operational projects that span across multiple business units and markets via the OEH. Manage the implementation and change into business as usual service delivery. 
• Build and develop close working relationships with key stakeholders and senior leadership teams to support a quality service culture. Pro-active management of all stakeholders, especially the expectations of leaders and management within the organisation (including senior management and partners).   
• Provide strong leadership to the OEH team, ensuring that effective relationships are built and maintained across the team and the appropriate levels within the business. 
• Demonstrate influential and adaptable style of leadership, and maintain integrity when dealing with complex and significantly difficult situations arising from risk, issue and change management. 
• Maintain and manage vendor budgets against commercial terms and the service centre budget against the plan. 
• Manage and review the performance of the 3rd parties based on agreed contractual SLAs and performance measures. Utilising the SRM Governance model to ensure continuous improvement, innovation and best in class benchmarking consistently delivers improvements to the quality and value of service delivery. Drive cultural awareness within the Vendor’s organisation, to better align values, core behaviours and service deliverables.

Experience, Qualification and Skills

Essential skills and experience required 

• Experience in the operational management of a large HR Shared Services environment (15000+ colleague base) within the UK across all disciplines. 
• Proven credibility to lead a key function and provide leadership and direction during a period of change. 
• Experience of partnering with the business at a senior level as well as knowledge and experience of operational delivery. 
• Excellent written, oral communication and presentation skills, with the ability to communicate complex ideas in a focussed, simple and commercially relevant manner. 
• Experience of a complex, fast-moving environment. 
• Change and project management skills and results orientated. 
• Strong influencing skills (able to build business partner relationship) with the ability to challenge at all levels. Ability to influence at a senior level and manage complex stakeholder relationships. 
• Leadership skills and personal drive to deliver results. 
• Experience of managing 3rd Party vendors, including relevant governance frameworks. 
• Able to drive operational efficiencies – Lean and Six Sigma being methods of familiarity and or experience within. 
• Experience of working cross functionally, especially across HR Centre of Excellences and matrix organisations - with strong working relationships across HR Centres of Excellence, HR Business Partners and wider business units. 
• Familiar with Success Factors/Sap HR products - management of HR Systems support teams (inhouse and outsourced models).

Desirable skills:

• Experience of programme management and delivering large change projects. 
• Commercial awareness and strong operational delivery. 
• Experience in managing both in-house and outsourced HR Shared Services (offshore and nearshore operations). 
• Experience in outsourcing HR Shared Services from contract to go-live of service delivery. 
• Experience in the automation of HR processes. 
• Experience in the implementation, coordination and development of HR systems (SAP, Success Factors).


Recognising and Motivating you

At KPMG, your long-term future is every bit as important to us as it is to you. That’s why our aim is to give you experiences that will stay with you for a lifetime. Whether it’s great training and development, mobility opportunities or corporate responsibility volunteering activities – you’ll gain a wealth of experiences on which to build a rewarding career. We’re a firm that encourages you to be yourself, values your contribution, and inspires you to act as a role model, always focused on doing the right thing for each other, our clients and our communities.

We’re at our best when you’re at your best; that’s why we’ve created ‘Our Deal’ and ‘The Academy’. Our Deal is the way we speak about the colleague experience and the expectations we have of our people. We expect the best from our people and in return we provide a stimulating, collaborative environment where each person can reach their extraordinary potential. Through ‘The Academy’, you’ll have access to communities which will support and develop you so that you build your skills and career. From introducing secondment programmes to preferential banking, and student loan payments to your birthday off, we’re making sure that our people have an amazing experience.

Intelligent Working

While our client-facing professionals can be required to travel regularly, and at times be based at client sites, our flexible working arrangements can help you to achieve a balanced lifestyle. We offer part time roles with flexible working arrangements which could include, annualised hours, early or late starts to fit around other commitments, shorter working days etc. We are happy to discuss your own requirements and our range of flexible working arrangements in more detail, should that be of interest and, as part of the recruitment process, we can put you in touch with people who work flexibly.

Applying with a disability

KPMG are proud to be an inclusive, equal opportunity employer and we seek to attract and retain the best people from the widest possible talent pool. As a member of the Business Disability Forum we're committed to ensuring that all candidates are treated fairly throughout the Recruitment Process. Should you be successful after the initial application stage, please discuss with your recruitment contact any reasonable adjustments to our Recruitment Process that you may require.

KPMG's commitment to diversity

KPMG consistently features in the Sunday Times Best Big Companies to work for, which has been recognised with a special achievement award to mark our 10 years in the Top 25. We pride ourselves on being a place where your individuality is valued; you can be yourself and still achieve your potential. We believe that your individuality helps us to deliver the best results to our clients. Diversity of background, diversity of experience, diversity of perspective - that's the KPMG difference. But, don't take our word for it, find out more about diversity at KPMG by viewing our Policy

At KPMG, we recognise that returning to work after an extended career break can be daunting. We understand and appreciate that those with experience who have taken a career break still have a wealth of experience and knowledge to offer our organisation, which helps us to achieve our business goals. We will support you to refresh your skills, develop your confidence and provide a supportive network across the firm to help you best integrate into the working environment. This role welcomes applications for individuals who have been out of work for 18 months or more and who have previous relevant experience.

Policy for Agencies

KPMG has a commitment to sourcing candidates directly and as such we do not accept speculative CV’s from agencies. Please check here to see our policy on agencies: Policy

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