StARS Programme Scrum Master

Academic Services

Birmingham, United Kingdom


  • Posted on: 16th Nov 2021
  • Salary: £42,149 to £50,296. With potential progression once in post to £56,587
  • REF: 98596
  • Closes: 07th December 2021
  • Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
  • Hours: Full Time

Job Summary

StARS+ (Student Administration Refresh and Simplification) is a University-wide programme to simplify, standardise and improve our student administration services, enabled by a replacement and upgrade of our student record system. Its vision is to deliver a better experience for students, academics and Professional Services staff; and enables a fundamental shift towards a more flexible set of capabilities and services that are fit for the future.

Reporting to the Programme Manager the StARS+ programme is looking to recruit a Scrum Manager (Reporting & Data Project) to join the Programme’s Team. The post holder will lead, develop and manage the sprint planning for the development of the reporting needs of the University in relation to the student data. In conjunction with senior colleagues, the Scrum Manager will also play a role in engagement, development, and implementation of the project as a whole. The post holder will be fully conversant with the institutional priorities and understand the technical nature associated with managing data across a complex institution. They will also ensure that the reporting and data approaches used in the StARS+ transformation programme are consistent with those being developed more broadly across the University.

This new post will focus on the Reporting and Data project within the programme ensuring the delivery of the reporting capability to support the University reporting needs in relation to its student administration and associated statutory reporting requirements. The role will need to work closely with IT Services and Strategic Planning so that the changes are aligned with the University reporting and governance arrangements and with the other Project Managers and Leads so that the individual operational reports arising from their projects are coordinated and delivered through a consistent framework and reporting capability.

Main Duties

• Facilitate the daily stand-ups
• Facilitate a scaled SCRUM approach that co-ordinates multiple workstreams
• Organising and running sprint planning and retros
• Ensuring the backlog is ready for planning
• Aligning dependencies and resources across all sprint teams
• Creating and promoting Agile practise around the company
• Manage the scope and timeline for each sprint
• Coordinate sprints, retrospectives and daily stand-ups.
• Reporting and update to the Reporting and Data Project Manager on delivery and progress in line with the project plan

Consulting Others

• Facilitate internal communication and effective collaboration.
• Work with product owners to handle backlogs (in R and D case, this is likely to be a combination of the BA and others.)
• Help teams to implement changes effectively.
• To provide expert advice and guidance to all colleagues on implementation and related issues;
• To raise awareness of, and increase engagement with, activity to implement the StARS+ reporting and data project across the institution;
• Any other duties as specified by the Programme Manager.
• consultation as required with the Programme IT Architect’.

Decision Making/Problem Solving

Without reference to others:

• Ensure deliverables are up to quality standards at the end of each sprint.
• Guide the development teams to higher scrum maturity.
• Resolve conflicts and remove obstacles that occur
• Help build an environment where team members ‘own’ the product
• Be confident in supporting multiple scrum teams

Person Specification



• A degreeor demonstrable equivalent experience;

• Considerable technical project management experience, with a successful track record of managing projects within timescale and budget;

• Training and experience of Agile methodologies is highly essential, an Agile coach is desirable;

• Membership of a professional project management body is high desirable.

The post-holder must possess and be able to demonstrate:

• Significant experience of either working in Higher Education and/or reporting and data related issues with an understanding of data governance mechanisms and data reporting concepts.

• Significant Scrum Master Experience and a consequent understanding of deliverables, deadlines, and risk management;

• Significant experience in engaging, and collaborating, with external stakeholders;

• Significant experience of working in complex organisations and successfully working across matrix management structures;

• Knowledge and significant expertise in strategic planning and translating data into operational and strategic reporting frameworks and business intelligence;

• Ability to be responsive and adapt to rapidly changing circumstances, whilst maintaining delivery of core goals and priorities;

• Ability to manage multiple, concurrent, complex streams of work;

• Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to achieve buy-in across a spectrum of stakeholders, adapting approaches to meet the different needs of Academic Services Divisions and Colleges;

• Credibility and gravitas to influence a range of colleagues across the University;

• Ability to persuade and negotiate effectively with all stakeholders;

• Experience of working with academic colleagues in a Higher Education setting or similar;

• Self-starting ability to research and master quickly the activity of a service or academic function and, with appropriate consultation and reflection, identify challenges and offer solutions;

• High level of self-motivation and personal accountability with ability to plan and deliver goals to deadlines under pressure;

Required Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications and Experience


• Experience gained within a management information/operational reporting or business intelligence project
• Experience of creating and interpreting student related data, alongside producing reports for consumption at a variety of levels.
• Ability to communicate effectively is paramount; this includes being able to translate complex ideas for those without detailed project or financial knowledge.
• Excellent general IT skills, with a strong working knowledge of Microsoft Office and must be highly competent in Microsoft Excel.
• Ability to rigorously prioritise, and work to strict deadlines. This includes the ability to adapt to changes in requirements, often with short notice or immediate turnaround times.
• Ability to listen and communicate clearly and openly with others, both verbally and in writing, and with due consideration for institutional dynamics.


• Good customer interaction skills
• Ability to be proactive, adopting a positive approach to seek resolutions in a calm manner.
• Given the confidential nature of the information that will be handled in this role, the post-holder should have the experience and ability to act with discretion, and should be aware of data compliance regulations.
• Good team player, with an ability to contribute outside their principal area of work in a constructive and helpful manner.
• Establish good working relationships with relevant contacts, not being afraid to challenge where appropriate.
• Experience of working in a large and complex programme ideally within the HE sector.

Informal enquiries can be made to Anna Best –

Valuing excellence, sustaining investment

We value diversity and inclusion at the University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community and are open to discussions around all forms of flexible working.

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