Client Program Director
Merkle is a leading data-driven, technology-enabled, global performance marketing agency that specializes in the delivery of unique, personalized customer experiences across platforms and devices. For more than 30 years, Fortune 1000 companies and leading nonprofit organizations have partnered with Merkle to maximize the value of their customer portfolios.
The agency's heritage in data, technology, and analytics forms the foundation for its unmatched skills in understanding consumer insights that drive people-based marketing strategies. Its combined strengths in performance media, customer experience, customer relationship management, loyalty, and enterprise marketing technology drive improved marketing results and competitive advantage.
With 5,500 employees, Merkle is headquartered in Columbia, Maryland, with 24 additional offices in the US and 25 offices in Europe and APAC. In 2016, the agency joined the Dentsu Aegis Network.
The Program Director is responsible for leading the successful execution of interrelated strategic marketing projects for key client partner(s) and serves as main internal escalation point for all related programs. The Program Director is the focal point for senior program leadership, while leading daily program operations such as project scope, deliverables, resource and capacity planning, and client and project profitability. The individual takes effective measures to ensure that projects are well planned, project risk and change is mitigated and/or addressed throughout the execution, both internally and with the client. The Program Director collaborates with multi-discipline teams responsible for solution delivery and strategic consulting projects. The Program Director continuously assesses quality control and identifies opportunities for improvement and efficiencies regarding process, tools, and systems. Success is measured through client satisfaction, continued improvement to process, and project effectiveness and profitability KPIs.
Description & Responsibilities:
- Partner with Client Leadership to support the growth plan, program roadmap, manage client needs and expectations based on specific marketing initiatives
- Manage long-term, multi-million-dollar engagements with workstreams and multiple project teams as well as demonstrate a firm command of project management processes and methodologies
- Ensure that all internal and external parties participating in the client's programs have the necessary information to fulfill their responsibilities
- Must be able to speak consultatively with all members of the client and internal team(s), including client services, project management, technical team members and senior management when necessary
- With appropriate client facing contact, ensure that program objectives and requirements are clearly communicated and understood within Merkle and achieved within budget and timelines
- Compile and own the program plan with contributions from all participating organizations
- Maintain the plan throughout the program, while tracking and communicating progress and milestone completions
- Work with Program Managers, Producers, Team Leads, and Technical Lead, as well as representatives from partner agencies and the client to identify and resolve issues and remove obstacles
- Work with interdisciplinary departments to ensure the team has the necessary organizational support to meet their objectives
- Think strategically about the client’s marketing strategy and offer creative marketing solutions to create brand-to-consumer interactions that accelerate the client's growth plan
- Develop comprehensive work plans, including determining scope, resourcing and capacity management, schedule availability and budgets that accurately reflect scope of work, with specific focus on engagements and deliverables
- Exercise vision beyond explicit assignments and identify broader longer-term opportunities or ways to improve current client deliverables and overall program operations
- Identify and implement process changes to optimize efficiency and minimize project risk
- Provide a point of accountability for program metrics and KPI’s
- Work with Client Finance to ensure the profitability of projects across the project lifecycle, beginning with scoping and pricing and extending throughout the project lifecycle
- Work daily with client finance to monitor the profitability of in-process projects
- Oversee the internal team members to ensure synergy across disciplines, as well as overall team health
- Manage the program from a strategic level, while also being able to drill into the details when needed, to guide the team in problem solving
- Bachelor’s degree
- 10+ years of experience in marketing program/project management, agency, or technology, with an emphasis on digital marketing programs
- Thinks clearly and diplomatically when participating in complex and sensitive discussion with internal groups and clients
- Ability to lead people in both a direct and indirect supervisory role
- Proficient in MS Word, MS PowerPoint, MS Excel, MS Visio, MS Project, Jira and other project management tools
- Ability to travel and be onsite in key client meetings or depending on the assignment may be onsite part or full time
- Familiarity with Time Tracking tools
- Familiarity with Agile or Agile certification
- Excellent communication, interpersonal, organizational and planning skills – Client facing and/or client management experience strongly preferred
- Strong understanding of web and application development, technologies, and design lifecycle
- Able to translate technical requirements to marketing and non-technical partners
- Organized, extremely detail oriented and able to balance multiple priorities
- Accountability and flexibility with the ability to work in a fast-paced environment
- Possesses strong leadership and decision-making skills
- Able to build strong, resilient relationships with clients and viewed as a partner
- Experience managing project or development teams and leading creative direction
- Effective negotiation and conflict management/risk mitigation skills
- Demonstrates and articulates professional standards of behavior for team members
FLSA Status: Exempt
Merkle is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity for all persons. HelloWorld recruits, employs, evaluates, and considers for promotion employees without regard to race, gender, religion, national origin, age, marital status, height, weight, medical condition or physical handicap or disability, or any other legally protected class, all as required by local, state, and/or federal law.
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