Head of HR Operations


This is a fantastic opportunity to be part of our transformation journey.  

As the Head of HR Operations you will provide strategic direction and leadership to deliver effective and efficient people services and systems. Driving  the ongoing development and improvement of services, processes and supporting technologies with be a major focus. 

We are looking for some who will contribute to the strategic development of the HR function by shaping a progressive business focussed HR Operations strategy that supports the people and organisation plans. 

This is a time of significant change for the firm and for the legal industry.  DLA Piper is leading the way through our focus on radical change, and the HR team are partnering with the business through the evolution to a pre-eminent alternative to the established legal elite.   


  • Lead the development and delivery of people services and systems for DLA Piper International, working with Communities of Expertise and Business Facing HR to ensure services will meet the needs of the business in an efficient and effective manner
  • Lead and develop the HR Operations team to deliver consistent, high quality, timely, accurate, added value services to the business, including oversight of the performance and development of HR shared services
  • Conduct operating performance reviews with HR and business stakeholders to assess delivery of people services and systems and inform development activities
  • Drive a continuous service and process improvement culture, ensuring that the voice of the customer is integrated in to process and service development
  • Provide HR functional leadership to ensure the provision of modern HR technologies, reporting and analytics services that provide insights to inform the strategic people and organisation plans of the business and process workflows which support great people leaders
  • Ensure an HR systems roadmap is in place and take the lead on behalf of HR in identifying, designing, building and implementing new systems, managing change control and prioritisation, partnering with colleagues in IT and other key stakeholders
  • Deliver effective governance processes to ensure compliance with legal, regulatory and internal requirements governing process, services, data and information management
  • Ensure the necessary financial, performance, and compliance arrangements are in place to provide assurance for all HR functional activities. Take the lead on business planning for HR, ensuring demand is translated into effective delivery plans and changes are properly managed
  • Manage the change and demand management processes across HR, ensuring prioritisation of key activities and that plans, budget and resources are effectively allocated
  • Manage the HR Operations budget, ensuring services are delivered within agreed cost parameters and driving efficiencies where possible
  • Own and manage the HR risk register on behalf of the function and ensure appropriate ownership for actions across the HR function leadership team
  • Identify and manage risks and issues associated with HR Operations delivery and put in place appropriate mitigation plans. Ensure the continuity of services can be maintained at all times
  • Deal with escalated issues and ensure their timely resolution. Role model and promote effective customer relationship management
  • Ensure HR Operations adapts to changing business needs and adopts new technologies and ways of working to enhance services, leading the HR team and business colleagues through change
  • Ensure effective communications are in place within HR and with business stakeholders to enable consistent , coordinated and effective messaging, with appropriate channels for feedback
  • Build and maintain constructive stakeholder relationships that position HR Operations and the wider HR team for success and help drive the development of great people leaders across the business
  • Lead significant projects and programmes of work on behalf of the HR team and support the wider team in building project management capability
  • Maintain an understanding of employment regulations, industry trends, current practices, new developments and applicable laws, bringing best practice into the organisation
  • Lead, coach and develop a team of functional specialists and influence others at specialism or functional level to create and deliver effective operational and project plans    


  • Relevant experience of HR shared services and the different stages of shared services development, including in-house, out-sourced and off-shore service models
  • Solid understanding of HR systems, ideally including modern cloud based solutions, and ability to engage with technical specialists and partner with them as a functional expert
  • Project management and internal consulting skills underpinned by strong analytical capabilities
  • Fluent in the development and use of metrics for business decision making
  • Experience of business process design, process mapping, problem solving and related decision making
  • Strong communication and stakeholder management skills, with the ability to engage with diverse teams; both culturally and geographically
  • The ability to effectively plan, set priorities, and manage several complex projects simultaneously
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills to effectively collaborate at all levels within the organisation
  • Strong business acumen and willingness to take the initiative, to identify new opportunities and challenge established ways of doing things
  • Strong leadership, coaching, counselling and consulting skills, coupled with the ability to influence, negotiate and persuade
  • Ability to build and maintain strong relationships both within and outside the firm, acting as an effective brand ambassador for DLA Piper, and an internal change agent
  • A sound understanding of contemporary HR practices and HR best practice, including knowledge of international employment legislation, relevant regulations and policy. Strong knowledge of data protection laws and regulations
  • Working knowledge of MS Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Microsoft Project and Visio
  • Ideally CIPD qualified, with Lean six sigma, Prince 2 or equivalent qualifications or experience


DLA Piper is a global law firm with lawyers located in more than 40 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific. Our global reach ensures that we can help businesses with their legal needs anywhere in the world.  We strive to be the leading global business law firm by delivering quality, service excellence and value to our clients and offering  practical and innovative legal solutions to help them succeed. Our clients range from multinational, Global 1000, and Fortune 500 enterprises to emerging companies developing industry-leading technologies, as well as government and public sector bodies.


In everything we do connected with our People, our Clients and our Communities, we live by these values:   

  • Be Supportive - we care about others, value diversity and act thoughtfully
  • Be Collaborative - we give, we share and we join in
  • Be Bold - we stand tall and challenge ourselves to think big
  • Be Exceptional - we exceed standards and expectations


At DLA Piper we are working hard to ensure that our talent pool is diverse. For us, diversity isn't just about visible differences, it's the unique blend of talents, skills, experiences and perspectives that makes each of us an individual.   

We know it's crucial to have a culture and environment where those differences are genuinely valued and that's why we strive to be a business where everyone can thrive, develop and succeed based on their talent.  Our aim is to build an inclusive and supportive culture where all our people feel they belong and can achieve their best.


We recognise that people have responsibilities and interests outside of their career and that as a business, we all benefit from working flexibly.  That's why we are open to discussing with candidates the different ways in which we are able to support requests for agile working arrangements.   


In the event that we make an offer to you, and where local legislation permits, we may conduct pre-engagement screening checks that may include but are not limited to your professional and academic qualifications, your eligibility to work in the relevant jurisdiction, any criminal records, your financial stability and references from previous employers.

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