USC Human Resources Administration

Job code: 111055Chief of Staff

Grade: M |Overtime eligible: No |Date approved: October 2, 2007


Oversees, directs and coordinates the operations of the executive's office for a school or division. Has responsibility for planning and directing staff, budget administration, space allocation and design, equipment, workflow and operational philosophy. Balances the alignment of the strategic objectives with managing daily activities. Serves as a senior advisor to and acts on behalf of the executive assuring and providing critical, high-level support to optimize executive's time. Conducts and participates in short-and long-range planning for a school or division. Directs and guides the planning, designing, implementation, and updating of the policies, programs, projects and procedures that manage the daily operations. Provides information and administrative assistance to officers, senior management and operating units through specialized service departments. Reports to top executive for the school or division.


Priority Time (%) Task (Performs other related duties as assigned or requested. The university reserves the right to add or change duties at any time.)

% Oversees, directs and coordinates the operations of the top executive's office for a school or division by planning and directing staff, budget administration, space allocation and design, equipment, workflow and operational philosophy. Provides short-and long-term planning of projects, activities and schedule of the executive. Oversees the development, evaluation or review of plans and criteria for a variety of activities. Assesses feasibility of proposed plans, projects and equipment. Ensures that mandatory reporting deadlines are met keeping in mind academic and/or administrative priorities.

% Assists with the creation of strategic plans and develops processes to ensure appropriate monitoring and follow-up. Implements new strategic plans, direction and performance metrics. Participates in planning new business initiatives to gain efficiencies and improve communications. Communicates planning, assumptions and guidelines. Gathers multiple inputs and integrates diverse plans and requests based on school or division priorities. Sets goals, establishes priorities, manages resources, develops concepts and approaches, reviews projects progress and results.

% Serves as primary contact for overall external coordination of activities with offices of officers and senior management, university Board of Trustees, political and civic leaders, major donors, other public and private contacts, etc. Provides information and administrative assistance to officers, senior management and operating units through specialized service departments.

% Oversees the planning of events and special projects. Performs ad hoc project analysis. Analyzes, summarizes and/or reviews data; reports findings, interprets results and/or makes recommendations.

% Recommends, advocates and/or implements, new and/or revisions to existing policies and procedures. Interprets applicable policies and procedures. Ensures compliance and approves any necessary exceptions.

% Directly or indirectly manages staff, usually through subordinate managers, supervisors and professional staff. Determines organizational structures, reporting relationships and short-and long-range staffing needs based on goals. Reviews and approves hiring and salary actions to ensure compliance with policy. Oversees performance appraisal process for staff and remains informed of any disciplinary actions required.

% Directs the budget and financial activities for office operations through financial professional staff. Approves all expenditures and ensures the generation of detailed financial reports. Analyzes financial data for trends and develops forecasts. Apprises executive of financial status.

% Consults with executives, managers and employees to identify problems, develop improvements, create and maintain quality standards.

% Resolves issues and requests referred to executive office by faculty, staff or students. Meets with concerned parties to discuss requests or complaints and determines best course of action for effective resolution.

% Participates in public relations, institutional development or fund-rising activities, especially with major donors.

% Serves on various boards, councils, committees, or task forces to coordinate school or division activities and facilitate goals and initiatives. Makes presentations, as requested by executive. Acts as liaison with internal and external groups, offices, and/or constituents.

% Oversees the planning and organizing of committee meetings, focus groups, etc. including oversight of the creation of agendas and preparation and distribution of minutes. Compiles data, statistics and other information and materials for meetings, presentations, etc. Oversees and directs staff in the preparation of correspondence, documents, special materials, etc. for executive's office. Ensures correspondence, documentation and materials are completed in a timely manner.

% Directs the design, enhancement and maintenance of recordkeeping systems, files, etc. Ensures recordkeeping systems, files, etc. are maintained on a regular basis.

% Develops, manages and maintains an effective communication program within the university, school or division. Ensures the timely reciprocal exchange of information among top management, faculty and staff.

% Monitors current events, legislation and other issues of interest to management and the university, school and/or division.
Essential % Develops and implements security related procedures such as office opening and closing routines, recognition of duress signals and key controls. Coordinates security activities with university public safety department. Promotes and maintains standards for security conscious awareness and behavior. Maintains knowledge of university's crime prevention and suppression programs and services. Ensures dissemination of security related information to staff.
Emergency response/recovery:    
In the event of an emergency, the employee holding this position is required to "report to duty" in accordance with the university's emergency operations plan and/or the employee's department's emergency response and/or recovery plans. Familiarity with those plans and regular training to implement those plans is required. During or immediately following an emergency, the employee will be notified to assist in the emergency response efforts, and mobilize other staff members if needed.


Minimum education Preferred education
  • Master's degree
  • Combined experience/education as substitute for minimum education
Minimum experiencePreferred experience
7 years 10 years
Minimum field of expertise Preferred field of expertise
Directly related administrative management experience in a university or corporate environment. Thorough knowledge of management principles, budgeting, finance, and applicable laws/regulations. Demonstrated leadership in planning, organizing and operating a large complex organization. Exceptional interpersonal skills. Outstanding oral and written communication skills. Strong planning and organizational skills. Ability to use computer technology with efficiency and effectiveness. Demonstrated leadership in planning, organizing and operating a large complex organization in an academic setting.
  • Analysis
  • Assessment/evaluation
  • Budget control
  • Budget development
  • Communication—written and oral skills
  • Conceptualization and design
  • Conflict resolution
  • Counseling
  • Interpretation of policies/analyses/trends/etc.
  • Interviewing
  • Knowledge of applicable laws/policies/principles/etc.
  • Leadership
  • Managerial skills
  • Mediation
  • Networking
  • Organization
  • Planning
  • Problem identification and resolution
  • Project management
  • Research
  • Staff development
  • Teaching/training
  • Calculator
  • Computer and peripheral equipment
  • Computer network (department or school)
  • Computer network (university)
  • Fax
  • Photocopier
Supervises level
Manages through subordinate supervisors performing administrative, clerical/secretarial/managerial/professional/paraprofessional work


Employee: Date:
Supervisor: Date:

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required of personnel so classified.

The University of Southern California is an Equal Opportunity Employer