Director of Talent

Job Type

Full Time



Start Date:



United States


Director of Talent at The Academy Group



Who We Are

The Academy Group (AG) is a unique enterprise founded to realize the long-term potential of young people from underserved communities across the United States. Designed to tap into the deep wells of often overlooked talent that exists nationwide, the Academy Group empowers youth to thrive in school, work and life. 

In 2017, we launched the Chicago Academy, with an enrollment to grow to 1000 students. We expect to establish Academies in cities across the nation in the years ahead. Academy Group students develop the agency and belief to excel. They receive high dosage, individualized academic programming from elementary school through college; a case-based business curriculum focused on building entrepreneurial, financial and analytic expertise; college and career counseling; rigorous job preparation and internships and; personalized advising and executive mentoring. Students attend their home schools, colleges and universities – with Academy programming occurring after school, on weekends and throughout the summer. The core values of the Academy Group are Excellence, Determination and Justice.

The Academy Group is built on a sustainable business model that aligns the commercial and social sectors. The Academy Group take ownership stakes in a diverse portfolio of commercial companies. The earned revenue generated from the Academy Group Companies funds the education programs, provide apprenticeships for students through college, and create employment opportunities to Academy Group graduates. 

Ultimately, the Academy Group aims to generate a new class of innovators and leaders by delivering long-term opportunities for exceptional young people to own, operate and create successful companies across multiple sectors. 

The Role

The Director of Talent will harness the ubiquitous talent that resides across our growing and diverse team. Since its inception in October 2016, the Academy Group has grown to over 15 team members and over 300 students. Now, in our second year, we anticipate doubling team members to reach a maturity scale that can ultimately serve 1,000 students. The Director of Talent will focus on continued development of organizational culture and ethos, employee development, and scaling a pipeline of talent that can serve Academy Chicago and Academies throughout the nation in time. The successful candidate will naturally cultivate the trust and credibility of the organization’s executive leadership team and our employees. The individual will be a strategic forward thinker and visionary thought leader, to ensure that team member interface with respect, accountability and positivity to advance the goals of The Academy Group.

The Director of Talent will report to the Chief Operating Officer.


The Director of Talent will be responsible for achieving the following outcomes within the first year:

·     Support the identification of talent needs and develop a hiring plan (including timeline, revised organizational structures, etc.)

·     Design, implement, and train staff and leadership on onboarding and off-boarding procedure

·     Manage our staff-wide Human Resource Information System (HRIS) to institutionalize and develop scale processes

·     Collaborate with executive leadership to refine the AG staff evaluation protocol and procedure, and train managers and employees

·     Maintain and develop a robust culture that sets strong incentives for each employee to offer their best contributions to the Academy group mission

·     Support the development and implementation of a professional development strategy and schedule, identifying skill and competency needs as well as corresponding resources for addressing those needs

Principle Duties and Responsibilities

·     Benefits and Resource Management

o  Coordinate health, life and disability insurance enrollments for staff and students and communicate with service providers concerning routine administration

o  Reconcile/validate routine reporting requests and monthly reports required for legal and cultural reasons (i.e. Administrative, Equal Employment Opportunity, Work Safety, Student facilities management etc.)

  • Maintain employee benefits programs and inform employees of all benefit policies, changes, including troubleshooting questions, processing changes, system configuration, monitoring integrations, testing, user training, data analysis, and other requirements
  • Ensures the Employee Handbook is kept up-to-date and revised each year according to evolving cultural growth

o  Owns vendor relationships, and other AG service providers across Human Resources and related services  Properly handle complaints and grievance procedures with existing employees

·     New Hire Experience

o  Design onboarding processes aligned with the organizational culture and ethos

o  Assist with new hires’ integration into the organization, including, but not limited to, creating new hire profiles, workstations, employee on-boarding from day one

o  Administer new hire paperwork and ensure compliance with federal, state, local regulations and with organizational values and beliefs

o  Create a strategy for new hire check-ins, and managing the logistics prior to new hire’s start with the business

·     Employee Competency and Skills Evaluation

o  Manage and administer regular employee performance evaluations with relevant supervisors and senior management

o  Provide guidance and council to managers on the performance management process, for consistency across organizational practices

·     Professional Development

  • Maintains the work structure by updating job requirements and job descriptions for all positions, where needed
  • Identifies and secures professional development opportunities for AG team members to address departmental needs
  • Keep ongoing open door policy for employee growth and satisfaction with willingness to intervene for fairness and best practice

o  Maintains professional and technical knowledge to stay current on Human Resources laws, legislation and trends, by attending educational workshops; reviewing professional publications; establishing personal networks, which can include participating in professional societies.

·     Organizational Collaboration

o  Update organizational charts with definition of each position and how each position interfaces with one another

o  Assist department leads to determine how their scope of work aligns with that of other teams to facilitate collaboration

o  Modify workflow as AG grows in scale


Additional Shared Accountabilities/Duties

·     In tandem with Chief of Staff, assist with updating and disseminating organizational policies and developing HR surveys

·     Ensure the AG is operating in compliance with internal policies as well as federal, state, and local regulations related to employment and team member safety

·     Collaborate with executive leadership to develop partnerships with key networks, identifying professional development opportunities and much more

  • Ability to provide analysis and consult with managers to ensure we are making data-driven people decisions
  • Maintain effective administrative Human Resource systems with Chief of Staff


Who We Are Looking For


Qualifications and Experience

·     Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources or Business Management

·     At least five years of Human Resource experience or equivalent combination of education and experience

o  Two to three years administering performance management/employee evaluations and developing employee remediation plan

o  One to two years in developing and/or implementing workplace conflict resolution system (i.e. employee dispute, sexual harassment reporting, absenteeism, and legal matters, etc.)

·     Preferred experience building or knowledge of compensation and wage structures

·     Preferred experience developing and implementing professional development strategies


Demonstrated Attributes


·      Excellent time management, organizational skills and flexibility working in a fast paced and constantly evolving start-up environment

  • Self-starter who can manage workload effectively with competing demands for time, comfortable working autonomously
  • Passion for serving people, organizational development, creating processes that better serve our team
  • Highly adaptable, resourceful, ability to think creatively and approach things differently
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills; a persuasive and passionate communicator with excellent interpersonal and multidisciplinary project skills
  • Ability to work effectively in collaboration with diverse groups of people
  • Passion, integrity, zest, mission-focus, and autonomous nature
  • Knowledge of current community challenges and opportunities relating to the mission of the organization

·      Ability to maintain a high level of confidentiality


This position will be based in Chicago.


Compensation and Benefits

The Academy Group offers a competitive salary and comprehensive medical, vision, dental and 401k package.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

To Apply

Please send your resume and a short (<250 words) note about your interest in the role to