Head of Property Management

Edinburgh, City of Edinburgh
£41,526 - £49,553
08 Jun 2021
30 Jun 2021
Job Role
Contract Type
Full Time

About our Team   

The Estates and Facilities Directorate leads the global provision for Strategic Planning and Operational Management of Estates, Facilities and Hospitality Services.  Additionally, in the Directorate is Oriam, Scotland’s National Sports Performance Centre and is a leading facility for performance sports which has been recognised for providing best in-class facilities for our students and the community.  The remit is to ensure that the facilities and services within the directorate are capable of supporting the delivery of the University Strategic Plan and beyond.

In Edinburgh, the University estate principally comprises a campus site positioned within the green belt to the West of Edinburgh.  It totals 222 acres hectares with 132 buildings providing a developed floor space of upwards of 230,000m², together with halls of residence, extensive landscaped grounds and the infrastructure such roads, car parks and essential utilities network. 

Two other Scottish Campuses in Scotland are based at Galashiels and in Orkney and we have international campuses located in Dubai and Malaysia.

Estates and Facilities is a key professional service directorate within the University’s Professional Services’ operating structure. Property Management is currently one of 4  divisions within the directorate.

Purpose of Role 

This 15 month fixed term opportunity will provide maternity cover for the substantive role holder for this strategically aligned role.

Reporting to the Global Director of Estates & Facilities , the post of Head of Property Management is a specialist role which will be responsible for the management of the University’s diverse portfolio of land and property. On a day to day basis the role holder will be responsible for providing high quality property management support to the Global Director of Estates & Facilities and the wider University acting as a point of contact for the University for all property management matters.

Key duties and responsibilities

  • The key priority for this role is to deal with all aspects of day-to-day management of the portfolio however during the term of the appointment the University has some critical deliverables including but not limited to:
    • Space Utilisation – project to capture current space utilisation and to develop a forward for space optimisation and utilisation
    • Estates data reporting primarily to support the University’s regulatory obligations
    • Working with the external property advisors to relaunch the marketing campaign and refresh of the property management of our Research Park
    • Management of University leased space issues and landlord management including the relationship management of third party tenants and occupiers
    • Lease negotiation for any new tenancies both as Landlord and as tenant
    • Maintenance of an accurate and up to date property ownership and lease database
    • Working with the Head of Project Services to develop and launch the new Edinburgh Strategic Estate Masterplan

Education, qualifications and experience

About you

  1. You will be a Chartered Surveyor and/or have extensive work experience with a proven track record of negotiating successfully in multi-stakeholder environments.
  2. Your understanding of Scottish property law will be sound and up to date
  3. Extensive “client side” commercial property management experience gained either in public or private sector.

The tasks and responsibilities listed under the following Competency Headings form part of all leadership roles in the University at this level and it is expected that the role-holder will perform them to at least an effective standard at all times.

Management Responsibilities:

  1. Act as the Estates and Facilities specialist point of contact on all matters relating to property and space management including to lead, develop and manage the University’s approach to space planning and allocation.
  2. Manage the University’s property interests including oversight of freeholds, leases and licensees ensuring compliance with all landlord and tenant legislation and statutory requirements and ensuring that income/expenditure relating to landlord and tenant arrangements are effectively managed.
  3. Manage the database of Estate occupancy to ensure optimum utilisation, adopting professional and best practice space planning principles.
  4. Deliver property management services which are customer focussed and commercially driven.
  5. Assist the Director in maintaining and enhancing the value of the University’s assets.
  6. Responsibility for ensuring that the University complies with all its property ownership and landlord requirements.

Decision Making

  1. Provide advice and make recommendations to the University to support its decision making in all property matters.
  2. Provide timely and accurate advice to customers and stakeholders based on your technical or specialist knowledge.
  3. Assess the risks of various options and work with the relevant customer/stakeholder to achieve the optimum outcome.
  4. Following Procurement guidelines, negotiate with suppliers regarding prices and deliveries to increase financial efficiency.

 Planning and Organising

  1. Ownership of accurate space records, including audits of space use and records retention for statutory purposes
  2. Support space moves across the University estate, to deliver space designs that meet their requirements.
  3. Plan, prioritise and organise the resources required for space planning.
  4. Develop new and improved statutory maintenance resource planning processes and procedures to ensure maximum resource efficiency.
  5. Develop, maintain and deliver the relevant Service Level Agreements.
  6. Manage delegated budgets ensuring compliance with University standing financial instructions. 

Initiative and Problem Solving

  1. Provide advice and guidance on complex and non-standard queries, using personal knowledge and experience.
  2. Use initiative and creative ideas to resolve non-standard problems using experience and reasoning to reach an effective conclusion. 
  3. Generate original ideas and innovative solutions through the provision of specialist  know-how and advice as appropriate
  4. Gather and analyse requirements for systems in order to identify optimum solutions

Service Excellence

  1. Create relationships and networks with customers, partners and stakeholders, providing property and space information influencing decisions and creative solutions. 
  2. Provide timely and appropriate guidance and advice on policy, procedure, legislation and local processes.
  3. Provide expert technical advice within your area of knowledge and experience.
  4. Work with colleagues within the directorate to contribute to and manage the continued review and improvement of the service.
  5. With the other relevant managers, ensure that all policies, systems, procedures and guidelines are in place to comply with all legislative and regulatory requirements related to statutory compliance of the estate.
  6. Set standards and lead by example.
  7. Ensure timely, accurate and informative provision of statutory and other reports and metrics.

Team Work

  1. Manage the relationships with all relevant external consultants and advisors e.g. legal advisors, property consultants, etc.
  2. Working with the Energy, Environment and Sustainability Manager to ensure the effective, sustainable utilisation of all University property
  3. Work collaboratively and effectively within the directorate, sharing expertise and contributing to the development of the directorate operational plan.
  4. Participate in working groups within the University and externally if required, sharing ideas, experience and providing technical advice.
  5. Deputise, as required or other senior colleagues in the Directorate.
  6. Champion and support a one-team culture across directorate and wider University.
  7. Working in partnership with the Heriot-Watt Research Park Manager in order to pursue and maximise all opportunities to develop promote the Research Park.

Clear and Consistent Communications

  1. Effective financial management, including maintenance of accurate rent and payment records, in accordance with University procedures.
  2. Produce relevant management information and KPI’s.  Prepare reports and papers for committees or funding bids as required.  Prepare agendas, take minutes of relevant meetings and prepare recommendation report on the back of property matters
  3. Write/review papers, policies, guidance and briefings for relevant audiences and stakeholders.
  4. Write letters, emails and other direct communication to individuals and groups.
  5. Interpret, prepare, analyse and deliver reports.
  6. Provide detailed explanations of systems, procedure or technical information both verbally and in writing.
  7. Interpret, prepare, analyse and deliver reports.


  1. Demonstrate the University Values at all times through performance and behaviour.
  2. Participate in ad-hoc duties to support the team/University and for personal development.
  3. Support newer or inexperienced colleagues within and outside the University by offering support, help and advice. 
  4. Positively promote the University internally and externally through positive behaviour and supporting University-wide activities.

Special Arrangements

  1. Participate in the University's management out of hours emergency provision arrangements, if required.

This job description is intended as a flexible framework which outlines the key general areas of activity in your position. Other activities may be required which are not outlined above but which are appropriate to the position and grade. Your personal objectives (Forward Job Plan) will also set out specific tasks and objectives for you to achieve, including objectives to help your career development.

To apply for this role, please click the ‘apply’ button today