Program Manager

Job description

Program Manager, SME Development Project

Location: Various locations, Saudi Arabia (Minimum 10 months out of the year)

Language: Fluent in Arabic and English, Saudi Nationals preferred

Start time: This is an urgent role. We are accepting applicants on a rolling basis, with expectations to close by November 10th, 2021


AstroLabs is committed to developing the digital ecosystem of the MENA region, and is leading the charge in this effort. We run one of the highest rated digital skills Academies in the region, operate 2 co-working spaces that support over 150 startups in the UAE and KSA, provide Talent and recruitment services to tech companies you use on a daily basis, support the international expansion of organizations through our company incorporation services, and run amazing incubators and accelerators for entrepreneurs with government and corporate partners. We are Ambitious, we take Ownership, and are committed to Excellence.

If you are a high performing, driven individual that loves working with SMEs, has experience with program management or have been a founder yourself, then read on - we would love for you to join our dynamic team!

AstroLabs has been engaged to establish multiple programs to enable a flourishing entrepreneurial business community serving and contributing to the local economy across different cities in the Kingdom. These projects will support the development of SMEs and startups through training, knowledge transfer and execution support.

As program manager, you will lead the successful design and execution of this program. You will own the end-to-end design of program, identify new value-adding activities in terms of content, networks and coaching that go above and beyond in delivering the best in entrepreneurial programs.

Stakeholder management

  • Client relationship management - Primary point of contact with senior management on customer side

  • End-to-end management of the program, ensuring successful outcomes for all participants and stakeholders

Program management

  • Ownership of the overall program design and development, including sourcing, vetting and briefing of speakers, mentors and instructors

  • Complete ownership of program experience: Regularly analysing program feedback to generate actionable insights to improve the program experience

  • Execute strategies and campaigns to source applications, and conduct interviews and assessments to select the most appropriate candidates

  • Responsible to execute demo/graduation events, including management of high profile stakeholders

  • Work closely with AstroLabs program teams in Dubai and Riyadh to ensure seamless and quality execution

  • Recruit and manage local staff, including program associate and other vital team members

Delivery leadership

  • Deliver core SME training content, ensuring content is practical and relevant and drive facilitation of all sessions

  • Provide mentorship, deep knowledge and and expertise in building SMEs and SME ecosystems, especially in regards to digitization

Job requirements

  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience in consulting, project management, SME training or company founder

  • Previous proven experience executing or leading programs for SME development, ideally in Saudi Arabia or the MENA region

  • Previous management experience, building and managing teams and interfacing with key stakeholder and public sector clients

  • Fluent spoken and written Arabic

  • Vision and ambition to develop new and innovative ways of delivering programs that are practical and outcome-driven. AstroLabs does not do traditional classroom-based training. We expect the program manager to be constantly driving innovations in the program design that will lead to better outcomes and greater efficiency

  • Structured and super organized/works well under pressure

  • Outstanding presentation and communication skills

  • Flexibility and coachability

  • Proven interest and passion for entrepreneurship and exposure to the local or international startup ecosystem.

What’s in it for you

Your role will directly impact the economic growth of Saudi, you will play a pivotal role in helping small businesses achieve milestones, meet their next investor or secure their next customer. The personal impact you will have on entrepreneurs is the best part of this role and this should be hugely exciting for you (if it’s not then please don’t apply!).

You will have full autonomy to implement your ideas (actually, that’s the main thing we will ask for) to improve our proposals, think of and implement ideas in our incubators/accelerators that no one else has thought of.

You will become part of a high-performance team focused on helping our customers. No bureaucracy, no corporate politics.

You will get a serious opportunity to grow. We are growing at pace and want our team to grow with us. You will build your personal development plan and have full support in progressing in your career in this job and all the ones that follow!

What will you learn

Continuous learning is a key value at AstroLabs. We are addicted to learning new things every week and we always say that we aim to become 1% better every day. If this is something you don’t enjoy, you probably won’t be a good fit into the team. But if you do enjoy it, here are just a few things you can expect from us:

Freedom to learn on the job. We all are autonomous and have a room to learn new things on the job itself. Constant feedback from your manager, peers and customers will help you improve every day. Here are just a few things we think you will learn during the first 3 months:

  • How to design a practical, outcome-driven program that help SMEs launch, pivot and grow (or fail quickly and cheaply)

  • How to communicate with senior clients in government and private organisations

  • How to effectively manage priorities

AstroLabs Book Club - whether you read, listen to podcasts or other mediums, as long as you enjoy learning, you will always get new resources from us.

Courses - you will have full access to all AstroLabs courses + budget for external learning.