IES Abroad
  • Human Resources
  • Chicago, IL, USA
  • Full Time

Job title: Director of Human Resources
Status: Full-time, exempt 
Schedule: M-F, 8.30a.m. 4.30p.m, 37.5 hours per week. 
Reports to: Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer & General Counsel
Direct reports: HR Generalists x2, HR Assistant, Payroll Manager
Start date: ASAP
Location: Chicago, IL, USA

About us:

Everything we do is about the IES Abroad student. Our profoundly passionate team of study abroad professionals believes in creating once-in-a-lifetime educational adventures that transcend expectations. Our goal is to rock the world of some 8,000 study abroad students every year.

From our headquarters in Chicago to our 120 study abroad programs in 85 global locations worldwide, we create authentic global education and life-affirming cultural experiences. We work at IES Abroad because we believe that every student should have the opportunity to go abroad - especially in a fun, safe, and superior academic and cultural environment.

We believe so strongly in the power of our program, that we actively recruit students from diverse populations and provide more than $3 million in scholarships year after year. We are proud that our students are as diverse and exciting as the countries we study.

We're not ashamed to admit, we're a little bit obsessed with study abroad.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Organization's global Human Resources management;
  • Set and manage budget for US departmental salaries, benefits and employment taxes; liability insurance, employee recognition programs and staff training/development;
  • Work with the organization's General Counsel, help ensure compliance with  applicable employment related laws and legislation globally;
  • Develop, implement, and manage the application of organization-wide human resources strategic planning, policies, and programs;
  • Develop, revise and implement human resources related policies, benefits offerings, services, and procedures with the goal of attracting and retaining excellent employees;
  • Advance fair and equitable treatment of all employees as required by IES Abroad policies;
  • Foster a healthy, safe, and productive work environment

Detail of Duties:

  • Plans, organizes, integrates, and evaluates the work of the HR department;
  • Plans, builds and maintains the HR Department structure, systems, policies and procedures that reflect the  goals, needs and requirements of the organization;
  • Develops, implements and monitors short- and long-term goals, plans and objectives;
  • Responsible for setting and managerial oversight of departmental budget and forecasts;
  • Coordinates performance evaluations and annual merit salary increases for Global staff;
  • Develop and recommend compensation plans that are market competitive and consistent with IES Abroad's compensation policies and goals across the organization, working closely with the COO, CFO and Budget Manager & Financial Analyst to help ensure compensation plans are aligned with the budget;
  • Act as an internal consultant for management and employees to anticipate, identify and facilitate resolution of employee relations issues consistent with company policies/practices, legal considerations and company priorities;
  • Act as a strategic advisor to the Executive Team in furthering the organization's people-driven goals;
  • Oversees the provision of recognition awards and other employee recognition initiatives and celebrations;
  • Oversees disciplinary action and performance management in conjunction
  • with HR staff, the COO and IES Abroad supervisor(s) to address performance and/or policy-related concerns, in accordance with established organizational policies;
  • Formulates Human Resources and organizational development strategies and policies;
  • Administers guidelines and procedures consistent with state and federal requirements and sound professional principles and practices across all departments; confers with and coordinates the implementation of HR programs, policies, and practices with senior management; provides advice to IES managers and supervisors on Human Resources management issues and practices;
  • Ensures proficiency and continued development of human resource technology to maximize efficiency, effectiveness, data integrity and security;
  • Directs the organization and maintenance of central personnel records;
  • Directs recruitment and selection activities for all IES U.S. positions and top level overseas positions; directs the development and maintenance of comprehensive job classifications, quantitative job evaluations, and compensation submissions;
  • Responsible for compliance with EEO requirements; directs the investigation and resolution of discrimination and other complaints in cooperation with the General Counsel; represents IES in dealing with state and federal compliance agencies in cooperation with the General Counsel and in hearings and litigation on unemployment matters in conjunction with IES Abroad's General Counsel and approved labor attorneys;
  • Partners with the General Counsel in managing employment-related litigation issues, identifies employee relations problems, and works with HR team to develop relevant human resources programs;
  • Leads HR staff in setting, interpreting, reporting and clarifying IES policies, procedures, and precedents for managers and employees; Keeps abreast of current and proposed state and federal laws, regulations, and court decisions for their impact on IES practices and operations; and recommends and implements policy and procedure changes consistent with requirements;
  • Proactively uses team member feedback and trends both internal and external to recommend effective solutions and opportunities for improvement for the company;
  • Responsible for coordinating employee training and development activities as required and as needed and requested by employees, managers and/or supervisors;
  • Responsible for reporting and administration of Conflict of Interest/Commitment policy for international staff, and Conflict of Interest policy for Board of Directors. Final decision-making authority for policy adherence;
  • Administer company's third-party ethics hotline (currently The Network);
  • Leads the evaluation, selection and administration of all US benefit plans; Responsible for fiscal management and legal compliance issues with respect to all benefit plans;
  • Primary responsibility for Executive Compensation (employment contracts, executive benefit programs; (i.e., Key Executive Insurance, supplemental insurance policies, etc.).  Lead the annual review of Executive Compensation and provide report to Board Executive Committee annually (due in early March).

Experience & Qualifications/Skills:

  • Must have thorough knowledge of theory, principles, techniques and the practice of Human Resources management and program administration, including recruitment, selection, reference checking, job analysis, job design, job classifications, job evaluation, compensation plan design, benefits design, employee relations, employee training, supervisor and management development, and performance planning and appraisal. Must be conversant with federal and state laws and regulations applicable to HR management. Should also have a firm knowledge of the principles and practices of effective leadership, management, and supervision;
  • Must be able to prepare clear, concise and comprehensive correspondence, reports, and other written materials; exercise sound, expert independent judgment within general policy guidelines; establish and maintain effective working relationships with all levels of management, employees, and Board members; and exercise tact, discretion and diplomacy in dealing with sensitive, complex and confidential personnel issues and employee situations;
  • Minimum of ten years of progressively responsible Human Resource management experience, at least five of which were in a supervisory or program management capacity

Education, Licenses and/or Certifications etc:

  • Minimum BA degree


This job description reflects management's assignment of essential functions; and nothing in this herein restricts management's right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time. The duties above are not to be considered a complete list of duties and responsibilities assigned to this position.

Application Deadline: 

Open until position is filled.

No phone calls or emailed status inquiries accepted.

How to Apply:

All applicants should submit an application including cover letter, resume and salary requirements by clicking 'Apply Now' at the right hand side of this page.

Please visit for more information about working at IES Abroad.

Equal Opportunity Employment:

IES Abroad is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from all qualified candidates. We strive to treat people with respect; fully utilizing employee's abilities and promoting workforce diversity.

We are committed to a policy of equal opportunity and do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), disability, age, national origin, citizenship, gender, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation or genetic information or veteran status and/or any other status protected by applicable laws.

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