Operations Manager

Basic information

### Applications for this position are now closed ###

Salary: £28,000 – £50,000

Hours: Full-time (flexible)

Location: Remote

The ideal candidate will be able to participate in regular meetings in the following timezones:  UTC (GMT – London), UTC-5 (EST – New York) and UTC-7 (CST – Colorado)  

About us

The Happier Lives Institute connects donors, researchers, and policymakers with the most cost-effective opportunities to increase global wellbeing. Using the latest subjective wellbeing data, we identify the problems that matter most to people and find evidence-based ways to solve them.

The role

The Operations Manager will be an experienced and versatile generalist who can diligently complete a wide variety of tasks and successfully juggle competing priorities.  They will ensure the organisation runs smoothly across a variety of domains including finance, charity compliance, human resources, fundraising, logistics, and the development of internal processes and policies.  Our current Operations Manager has written more about her role here.


General administration (approx. 40%)

  • Assist with day-to-day financial operations such as bookkeeping and processing invoices, service orders, and other expense claims to ensure payments and expenditure reporting are up to date.
  • Manage budget planning and annual reporting, prepare annual draft budgets, and make recommendations based on expenses and revenue.
  • Ensure ongoing compliance with UK Charity Commission requirements.
  • Work with the Director to determine quarterly Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) and contribute to strategic decisions as needed.
  • Coordinate and support meetings, assist with research management, and develop internal systems (e.g. Asana for task management).
  • Create and implement HR policies and procedures as needed (e.g. health and safety, financial controls, conflicts of interest, expense claims, etc.).
  • Plan and organise the logistics for HLI team retreats.
  • Manage the hello@happierlivesinstitute.org inbox
  • Assist with special projects as required.

Recruitment and onboarding (approx. 25%)

  • Ensure that we hire, manage, train, and retain the right people in the right roles across the organisation.
  • Lead all hiring procedures and administrative duties related to recruitment, interviewing, and onboarding of new staff, summer research fellows, and contractors.
  • Support the creation and annual adjustment of employment contracts, including writing position descriptions, conducting salary benchmarking, and optimising existing templates.

Fundraising and donor management (approx. 20%)

  • Develop funding proposals and write grant applications and reports.
  • Take the lead on donor relationship management and work with the Communications Manager to produce donor communications and other materials (such as pitch decks and presentations).
  • Prepare donor reports.

Provide administrative support to the Director (approx. 15%)

  • Manage the Director’s schedule including booking meetings and travel.
  • Manage the Director’s inbox, which includes:
    • Creating and updating processes to ensure emails are replied to in a timely fashion (within 48 hours where possible).
    • Drafting emails to a wide variety of stakeholders including philanthropists, academic experts, and project collaborators.
  • Coordinate expense reimbursements.
  • Other tasks as assigned.

Required skills and experience

  • Passion for HLI’s mission
  • 3+ years experience in operations, project management, logistics, or a related field.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Not afraid to ask lots of questions to check your understanding.
  • Detail-oriented with excellent organisation and planning skills
  • Can-do attitude, excitement to take on new tasks and learn new things, and happy to do anything that helps the team.
  • A team player who enjoys coordinating and working with others.
  • Proactive, assertive and action-oriented; driven to work without supervision.
  • Optimization-focused: you constantly seek out improvements and question the status quo in pursuit of a better solution or system.
  • Service-minded and comfortable with some amount of repetition in your work; motivated by the idea of doing whatever will have the most impact, even when it’s not glamorous.

Desired skills and experience

We don’t expect you to have all the skills and experience on this list. Plus, we want you to learn new skills in this role. If you are on the fence, please err on the side of applying.

  • Familiarity with effective altruism.
  • Experience with fundraising, engaging with major donors, and grant writing.
  • Experience working in finance, HR, charity compliance, or logistics.

What we offer

  • Join a smart and dedicated team to make progress on some of the most pressing research questions for increasing global wellbeing (see our research agenda).
  • Intellectual challenge and a chance to learn and grow in an interdisciplinary setting.
  • Connect with a growing network of wellbeing experts and advocates.
  • Set your own working hours as long as you complete your work in a timely manner and are available for scheduled meetings (full time is considered to be 35 hours/week).
  • Work from wherever you like (we are a fully remote team based mainly in the UK and US).
  • 25 paid days of annual leave + 8 national holidays.
  • 10% of your time (3.5 hours a week) for personal development.
  • An opportunity for travel to conferences and team retreats.
  • A free HLI t-shirt!

How to apply

### Applications for this position are now closed ###

Selected applicants will be invited to complete a series of work tasks and interviews which we expect to take no longer than 5 hours in total.

Please contact hello@happierlivesinstitute.org if you have any questions.

We strongly encourage candidates of all backgrounds and identities to apply to this role. HLI is committed to building a diverse, inclusive, and supportive community where you feel happy, valued, and do your best work.