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Associate Director, Ops Strategic Planning

Company: Atara Biotherapeutics
Location: Thousand Oaks
Posted on: May 3, 2021

Job Description:

Job Description

Associate Director, Operations Strategic Management (OSM) is a Project Manager position within the Technical Operations business unit. The Project Manager OSM will be responsible for planning, executing, and finalizing projects according to strict deadlines and within budget. This includes acquiring resources and coordinating the efforts of team members and third-party contractors or consultants to deliver projects according to plan. This position will eventually mange a team of junior project managers and associates. The Project Manager, OSM will also define the project's objectives and oversee quality assurance throughout its life cycle. Types of projects in this role include new product introductions and significant improvement projects having significant regulatory impact.

Reports to: Director, Operations Strategic Management

Location: Thousand Oaks, CA

Travel: Travel is not frequently required (<5%)

Primary Responsibilities:

  • This role coordinates, supports, and assists all aspects of complex, cross-functional projects, from original concept through the final implementation on the shop floor, ensuring governance process adherence, project continuity, and stakeholder management. The incumbent develops project budgets, timelines, and risk assessments and is responsible for performance against these parameters; actively monitors and reports on project status, risks and decisions required and highlights assumptions and unknowns to ensure full transparency
  • This role presents reports and the status of the work packages, communicate technical aspects of transfer and Quality needs to those not familiar with the process, and work closely with the Program/Project Managers (P/PM) from other departments to establish timelines and ensure that products/processes are compliant with company quality standards
  • Manage and track project tasks completion by driving accountability. Manage project efforts associated with functions such as Process Development, Analytical Development, Manufacturing, Quality, and Supply Chain
  • Partner with aforementioned functions to develop Statements of Work (SOW) contracts for partnered programs. Work with subject matter experts, legal, finance as required to define scope and budget, facilitate the negotiation and execution of SOWs
  • Own functional and/or PT project meetings and sub-teams by managing meeting schedules, agenda, minutes, action items list, Gantt charts and timelines. Partnering with project sponsors to periodically update project dashboards for communication.
  • Work with the project leads and teams to identify and mitigate risks to meeting project and problem solving schedules by driving scenario planning and escalates to impacted area leads.
  • Conduct lessons learned sessions to identify areas for improvement and maintain tracker for implementation of short and longer-term corrective and improvement measures into standard project management practices.
  • Provide coaching, mentoring, and facilitation, of junior team members and drive leadership.
  • Contribute to the standardization of the project management best practices and seeking opportunities to harmonize processes and systems across programs.


  • Master's degree with 8+ years of directly related experience OR Bachelor's degree and 12+ years of directly related experience, preferably in a science related field
  • Prefer 8+ years of experience in the Biopharma industry
  • Demonstrate ability to lead and work in a team environment to develop, implement and deliver on project goals.
  • Strong knowledge with MS Office applications, MS Project, SharePoint and Document Management System.
  • PMP certification is preferred but not required.
  • Good verbal and written skills. Must be able to articulate issues and solutions to the team and upper management.
  • Good leadership and team building skills capable of leading diverse multidisciplinary teams.
  • Good leadership presence with ability to inspire and motivate a team and attract, develop, and retain strong talents.
  • Demonstrates a breadth of diverse leadership experiences and capabilities including: the ability to influence and collaborate with peers, develop and coach others, oversee and guide the work of other colleagues to achieve meaningful outcomes and create business impact.
  • Strong understanding of pharmaceutical and/or biopharmaceutical manufacturing.
  • Knowledge of GxPs, FDA guidelines, and other relevant international and domestic regulations.
  • Ability to manage mid-size to complex projects with ambitious milestones in high pressure circumstances.
  • Excellent project management skills; highly organized and detailed oriented.
  • Flexible, with positive attitude, and highly self-motivated. Can work independently, able to prioritize, and works effectively under pressure.
  • Facilitate solutions to complex problems which requires the use of ingenuity, innovation, and creativity
  • Displays strong initiative and commitment to the successful, on-time completion of projects
  • Produce high quality project reports and presentations
  • Establish & maintain communication and document sharing structures (meeting invites, information distribution, shared drives)
  • Ability to effectively manage multiple projects simultaneously and in a timely manner.
  • Self-motivated with a "can do" attitude.
  • High bar personal ethics with a "patients first" value system.
  • Recent experience with a smaller entrepreneurial environment is an asset.
  • Role model for Atara's values.

More about Atara Bio

We launched Atara Biotherapeutics in August 2012 to help patients with serious diseases and few therapeutic options. We are considered a leading off-the-shelf T-cell immunotherapy company (Nasdaq ATRA) developing novel treatments for patients with cancer, autoimmune and viral diseases.

We're proud of our team of 425+ Atarians co-located by design in 4 different locations including South San Francisco (corporate headquarters), Thousand Oaks (R&D and manufacturing headquarters), Zug, Switzerland (european headquarters) and a R&D site in the Denver, Colorado area. Our Southern California hub is anchored by a new 90,000 sq. ft., state-of-the-art Atara T-Cell Operations and Manufacturing (ATOM) facility. Our mission - "Transform the lives of patients with serious medical conditions through pioneering science, teamwork, and a commitment to excellence."

Our vision - "T-Cell Immunotherapy for every patient, any time."

Atara offers a competitive benefits packages that includes medical/dental/vision benefits, life and disability, retirement and stock program, as well as a generous paid time off and wellness plan that supports the well-being of our staff. Visit to learn more.

Atara Bio is an equal opportunity employer and makes employment decisions on the basis of merit and other lawful factors. In accordance with applicable law, the Company prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth or medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth), gender identity, expression or dysphoria, marital status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, veteran status, caregiver status, sexual orientation, transgender status or any other classification protected by federal, state or local laws or because of the individual's association with a member of a protected group or connection to an organization or group related to a protected group.We comply with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act. All applicants must have authorization to work for Atara Bio in the United States.

Keywords: Atara Biotherapeutics, Thousand Oaks , Associate Director, Ops Strategic Planning, Other , Thousand Oaks, California

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