University of Waterloo

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Administrative Officer

Administrative Officer

Requisition ID 
Job Category  
3400 - Physics and Astronomy
Job Status 
Temporary Appointment (Contract)
Hiring Range 
$62,976 - $78,721

More information about this job


Term: 15 months


The Administrative Officer is responsible for effective management of all non-academic aspects of the Department of Physics and Astronomy within the framework of the Faculty of Science and the Universitym of Waterloo. The purpose of the position is to manage budget and financial activity; supervise staff and provide support and guidance to the Department with respect to human resources; and to provide management and oversight of other administrative functions, such as space and planning. The Administrative Officer serves as a resource to the Chair and other senior administrators in the Department and provides leadership and support for strategic initiatives and special projects. As the senior administrative staff member in the Department, the Administrative Officer provides continuity as academic leadership changes.


Strategic Planning and Administrative Leadership

  • Provide Chair and Associate Chairs with confidential information and data to support decision making processes
  • Co-ordinate and manage the resources required to support the strategic and operational plans of the department
  • Support the development and completion of long range strategic goals
  • Ensure administrative continuity of academic administrators through effective record keeping and internal departmental procedures
  • Manage and coordinate departmental databases
  • Support requests for departmental information required at the Faculty or institutional level
  • Liaise with academic partners such as the Institute for Quantum Computing, Perimeter Institute and GWPI with respect to collaborative teaching and research projects
  • Manage and participate in departmental self-studies, site visits and outcome responses


Financial Management

  • Oversee the development of the department’s annual operating budget, working with those in senior departmental administrative positions and Faculty Financial Officer
  • Allocate resources for departmental activity (i.e., teaching assistants, sessional lecturers, equipment, and renovations)
  • Provide direction and guidance for income sharing funds and one-time budget transfers between the Department and the Dean of Science Office
  • Actively monitor salary, non-salary expenditures and project-specific budgets for all fund types and provides approvals as designated
  • Provide accurate and up-to-date financial information to the Chair on the overall financial status of the department on a monthly basis and as required
  • Work closely with the Financial Officer to develop, improve, and promote internal financial processes for the Department, ensuring that University policies and procedures are followed
  • Provide direction and guidance to departmental Financial Officer, Administrative Staff and Faculty members to ensure operating, trust and research accounts are effectively managed
  • Provide direct oversight related to the management of special funds or projects (i.e., Endowed Research Chairs)
  • Monitors and reports on the financial status of major strategic and operational initiatives (i.e., partnership agreements, renovations, research services)
  • Conducts analysis to support planned or anticipated program changes & enhancements to provide departmental management with an assessment of financial viability

Human Resources Administration

  • Oversee the recruitment, performance evaluation, professional development and retention of administrative and technical staff members within the department
  • Provide administrative supervision to Lab Demonstrators and Sessional Lecturers in the department
  • Review staff position descriptions & reclassifications, making grading and compensation recommendations
  • Review and up-date administrative processes and make recommendations for improvements
  • Serve as signing authority for the departmental TA budget. Provide approvals for related payroll expenses for Teaching Assistants and casual employees
  • Conduct periodic assessments of Departmental TA funding models to manage financial risks within the context of departmental budgets

Management of Physical Resources

  • Plan, implement and manage space allocations/reallocations within the department
  • Facilitate maintenance and renovation of space as approved through Departmental and Faculty processes
  • Plan and coordinate all moves and disposals within departmental space

Health and Safety

  • Chair departmental Health and Safety committee
  • Responsible for ensuring all graduate students, staff and faculty have completed required online and in-class health and safety training modules
  • Manage departmental health and safety inspections for laboratories, administrative and teaching spaces
  • Ensure proper decommissioning of research laboratories
  • Provide direction and guidance for faculty members and lab associates on health and safety issues
  • Liaise with the Safety Office for Joint Health and Safety inspections and incident reporting
  • Responsible for ensuring all graduate students, staff and faculty have completed required online health-safety training modules


  • University degree in a related field, business administration or commerce preferred. Familiarity with science, engineering or technical disciplines an asset
  • Several years management experience, preferably in academic setting
  • Proven record of administrative leadership and supervisory experience
  • Experience developing, monitoring and managing budgets; ability to synthesize and organize financial information
  • Multi-tasking, concurrent task and problem management skills are essential with the ability to assess, analyze and resolve issues highly complementary
  • Demonstrated analytical skills
  • Tact, judgement & diplomacy are essential
  • Strategic and creative thinking, people management, interpersonal, organizational and communication skills
  • Ability to motivate others, and to facilitate and settle highly sensitive matters
  • External to the Department, this person communicates with Faculty and University level administrators to obtain action, negotiate, and reach agreement. In particular, this role manages the relationship for administrative matters with key partners (internal and external to the university). Examples include IQC, PI, WIN and GWPI
  • Technical Skills include: Advance Microsoft Office, Experience with Sharepoint, iCIMS systems, Unit 4 and Concur