Managing Director, Knowledge Center: United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey

United Way of Greater Philadelphia & Southern New Jersey’s mission is to end intergenerational poverty in our region by harnessing, leveraging and strategically investing the collective power of donors, advocates, and volunteers, to help individuals and families break the cycle of poverty.

Role Summary: United Way is seeking an experienced Managing Director to help lead data collection and evaluation efforts for the Knowledge Center, the evidence hub for the Poverty Action Fund, a city-wide public/private partnership in Philadelphia, and future regional collaborations. The Knowledge Center will provide continuous measurement, accountability, and learning to maximize the value of poverty reduction investments.

Reports to: The CEO of United Way of Greater Philadelphia & Southern New Jersey

Position Description: 

The Managing Director will be responsible for developing, designing, implementing, and leading the programs and activities of the Knowledge Center. The Managing Director’s primary role is to work with the United Way and the Knowledge Center Advisory Committee to design and develop strategies that align with and fulfill the Poverty Action Fund’s strategic plan. The Managing Director will manage internal data and facilitate the data to be used to advance the Knowledge Center’s efforts related to program evaluation, communications, and grantee management. The position requires a blend of program management, program design and evaluation, and responsiveness to data and impact assessment needs in the areas of poverty reduction and nonprofit service delivery.

Successful candidates will have programmatic experience, and technical capability or experience in data management, information science, program evaluation, or other related fields in the context of using data for program management and impact. Successful candidates will have demonstrated abilities in translating data into useful information for program impact, program evaluation, and communications pieces for broader audiences.

The Managing Director will play a key role in helping streamline evidence-focused grantmaking processes and support high-performing community organizations and partnerships. In the first major initiative of the Knowledge Center, the Managing Director will drive the measurement and accountability efforts related to the Philadelphia Poverty Action Fund, a joint effort between United Way, the City of Philadelphia and private philanthropy to reduce Philadelphia’s poverty rate and create opportunities for an equitable recovery from the economic collapse. The Philadelphia Poverty Action Fund will be grounded in measurement, accountability, and learning. The Knowledge Center will provide a hub for data collection, assessment, transparent reporting, and continuous learning and adaptation. The Knowledge Center will serve four primary functions:

  1. Set the overarching goals and measurement strategy
  2. Provide technical assistance for data collection and reporting to selected grantees to ensure high quality data and evidence
  3. Evaluate implementation and short-and long-term program outcomes
  4. Conduct primary research on poverty trends in Philadelphia and comparison cities to inform strategy

 Overview of Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

Strategic Management: (40%)

  • Advise leadership team on codifying strategic goals so that they are measurable, impactful, and compelling; develop system for effectively tracking progress toward goals
  • Forge collaborations with research and/or university partners to lead technical assistance, evaluation, and broad-based citywide research efforts
  • Lead Knowledge Center efforts to define project roadmaps, short- and long-term goals, and key metrics and milestones for measurement
  • Help the team share powerful stories about investment results with stakeholders (e.g. potential funders, community members, elected officials and other supporters) by producing relevant quantitative and qualitative data and reports as needed
  • Establish the foundation for a culture of accountability, responsiveness, flexibility and results
  • Collaborate with the CEO of the United Way to raise awareness and funding for the Knowledge Center, and build new partnerships in Greater Philadelphia

Data Management: (40%)

  • Ensure collection and quality assurance of data and work with partners to analyze and produce actionable insights to help team identify potential opportunities and red flags related to outcomes
  • Oversee the development and management of a central database for reporting and analysis
  • Conduct exploratory analysis of internal data and make recommendations about the types of questions leadership should be asking and the types of narratives to develop for external audiences
  • Coordinate research and technical assistance partners
  • Collaborate with learning and evaluation partners to analyze external quantitative data and distill key takeaways for external communications

Project Management: (20%)

  • Manage project budgets, timelines, resources and deliverables
  • Track project costs in order to meet budget based on scope of work and resource requirements
  • Provide project updates on a consistent basis to various stakeholders about strategy, adjustments, and progress; maintain excellent client and consultant relationships
  • Facilitate the development of data transfer agreements with external data vendors
  • Manage contracts with vendors and suppliers by assigning tasks and communicating expected deliverables

 Job qualifications, knowledge, skills, and abilities: 

  • 7+ years practical experience with project management, especially related to the areas of research and evaluation or data collection and analysis
  • Experience leading complex data collection, measurement, and learning projects
  • Strong familiarity with project management software tools, methodologies, and best practices
  • Experience managing complex projects and seeing through the full life cycle
  • Experience with process improvement to help the team run more efficiently
  • Excellent analytical skills
  • Proven ability to solve problems creatively
  • Strong interpersonal and relationship management skills and extremely resourceful
  • Ability to maintain a professional demeanor and adapt to rapidly changing priorities
  • Demonstrated ability to prioritize multiple projects simultaneously to meet deadlines within planned scope, budget, and timeline
  • 4-year degree; advanced degree in policy, data science, program evaluation or related fields preferred

UWGPSNJ promotes a culture of inclusion and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, veteran status or any other legally protected factor.


Medical, dental & vision insurance

Company paid life insurance & LTD

Vacation, sick, personal, volunteer time off

How to Apply

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To apply please submit your resume and cover letter to: