COOP Seeks Director of People (NYC)

Every college grad deserves a fair shot at a meaningful, upwardly mobile career. That’s the promise of higher education in America, but the payoff depends on who you know, not just what you learned.

COOP Careers closes the social capital gap by recruiting and investing deeply in diverse, low-income, and first-generation grads from the City University of New York, San Francisco State, and other urban public colleges.

Our flagship program is the Digital Apprenticeship. Peer cohorts of 16 motivated, underemployed grads meet nightly for 16 weeks (200 hours) to learn technical skills, build community, and jumpstart careers in digital marketing and data analytics. Each cohort is led by a team of four captains, “near-peer” COOP alumni who serve as coaches, mentors, and guides on top of busy day jobs at local ad agencies and tech companies. In parallel, COOP helps these same employers meet, interview, and hire more and more diverse candidates.

Since 2014, COOP has run 76 cohorts with over 1,000 alumni, on our way to 10,000 by 2023. Four-in-five alumni work full-time, earning an average of $45,000 after 12 months (3x pre-program average) and almost $70,000 after three years (2x peer baseline).

Long-term, COOP aims to double lifetime income of alumni—fueling upward mobility and fulfilling our collective promise of higher education. Learn more here.

Our Workplace

COOP is an energetic, come-as-you-are, alumni-led organization. Over 70% of our staff members have been program participants. This translates to a workplace that is mission-driven through and through, where we collaborate in the spirit of servant leadership with equal parts head, heart and hustle. We are a team of 19 in the Bay Area and NYC. We come together for monthly lunch & learns and semi-annual retreats and earnestly create space for professional development and learning. We dig into strategy, equity, our own humanity and the intersections among it all, working with purpose to overcome underemployment, and bringing optimism and fun to the challenge.

The Opportunity

COOP Careers is seeking a dynamic servant leader (who leads with head and heart!) to provide strategic, impassioned leadership to all aspects of its results-driven and quickly growing organization. In 2020, COOP will hire 30 new team members across its New York and California offices as well as serve 500 recent grads.

The Director of People (DoP) will launch a new functional team at COOP to support the organization’s most valuable resource–people–as we embark on this exciting growth phase. The DoP will report directly to the COO, and in collaboration with senior leadership, will manage and execute an organizational strategy including hiring, onboarding, HR and team member development.

The ideal candidate will bring experience in recruiting, hiring and coaching as well as in using quantitative and qualitative data to drive performance. They will be a cross-functional collaborator, creative innovator, and have a proven track record of achieving results in a feedback-driven culture. Working closely with the Director of Operations and Finance, the DoP will play a critical role in ensuring that all positions within the organization are filled, and that we scale our capacity in alignment with our team’s needs and the demands of our growing program.


Organization-wide recruiting, hiring and onboarding strategy (50%)

  • Provide strategic partnership with COOP’s national leadership team to develop our organizational growth plan, including refining and/or developing recruitment and hiring systems

  • Implement strategies, procedures, and processes to ensure hiring of a diverse workforce

  • Manage an aggressive hiring calendar, staffing a variety of roles at all organizational levels to meet the needs of COOP’s growth plan

  • Partner with national and regional leaders at COOP to facilitate thorough and streamlined hiring processes that include a variety of stakeholders

    • Develop strategies to proactively identify and connect with high quality candidates

  • Develop comprehensive onboarding plans across functional teams to ensure that new team members hit the ground running

Ongoing staff development and growth (30%)

  • Collaborate with the COO to set and execute a comprehensive vision for team member development, including the utilization of COOP’s $1500 annual PD budget for each team member

  • Create and implement a plan to support organizational culture by implementing regular team surveys and feedback systems and individual team member performance

    • Translate results, present recommendations, and provide support for people leaders to implement strategies focused on addressing areas staff members’ needed and desired areas of support

  • Develop a strategy to identify, assess, and develop internal talent (i.e., internal talent pipeline)

  • Develop systems to recognize team members’ contributions in alignment with COOP’s Core Values

Other HR-related functions (20%)

  • Design and manage a comprehensive performance management system including annual reviews and a 30-60-90 day review process for new hires

  • Support the implementation of COOP performance management systems

  • In collaboration with the Director of Operations and Finance and the COO, ensure that all of COOP’s HR related responsibilities are achieved, including compliance and staff trainings

  • Support benchmarking, assessment, and recommendation of COOP’s benefits offerings to ensure competitiveness in the market


  • 5+ years of directly related professional experience with significant experience in the people, operations, HR, Recruiting, non-profit, education, and/or workforce development sectors is highly desired

  • At least 3 years of experience recruiting, developing, coaching and growing individuals and teams with a focus on cultivating and maintaining a data-driven, results-oriented, and high-feedback culture; track record of building efficiencies and implementing process improvements

  • Thrives in a fast-paced environment and enjoys teamwork and collaboration

  • Demonstrated ability being a strategic thought partner to senior leadership, utilizing analyses of data to make recommendations for remediation or innovation strategies, preferably in the area of people/talent development

  • Strong quantitative analytical skills with the ability to use data (both quantitative and qualitative) to identify patterns and performance metrics to create targeted strategies and management support structures

  • Excellent communicator at a variety of levels; exceptional presentation skills and the ability to manage by influence and coach across a wide range of audiences

  • Ability to travel occasionally to current and future COOP markets (once per quarter on average)

  • Deep commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion and aligned in thought and action with COOP’s values; strong alignment with COOP’s mission and vision

  • Bachelor’s degree required

Compensation, Perks & Benefits

  • Competitive salary, commensurate with experience

  • A generous and flexible vacation policy, including holidays and office closed the last week of December (12/25-1/1)

  • Flexible scheduling and work-from-home Fridays

  • Up to 100% employer-funded comprehensive medical, dental and vision coverage for you and your family

  • $1,500 annual professional development budget

  • Commuter benefits

  • 401(K) retirement plan (employer match TBD)

  • All the niceties of WeWork (fruit water!)

Apply Today!

Please submit your resume and a simple cover letter highlighting your professional background and interest in our mission to this google form. We will review applications on a rolling basis.

COOP provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, or genetics. We seek to build a diverse staff representative of the communities we serve. All qualified applicants are strongly encouraged to apply.

Thank you for your time and interest in our mission.

To apply, visit https://forms.gle/6SfdKeU7AQpXNTP48

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