Business Administration Manager

Job Details

Job ID: 12134

New ideas are all around us, but only a few will change the world. That’s our focus at JPL. We ask the biggest questions, then search the universe for answers—literally. We build upon ideas that have guided generations, then share our discoveries to inspire generations to come. Your mission—your opportunity—is to seek out the answers that bring us one step closer. If you’re driven to discover, create, and inspire something that lasts a lifetime and beyond, you’re ready for JPL.

Located in Pasadena, California, JPL has a campus-like environment situated on 177 acres in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and offers a work environment unlike any other: we inspire passion, foster innovation, build collaboration, and reward excellence.


This key opportunity is part of the Instruments Division, which is responsible for creating one-of-a-kind scientific instrument systems.  Our expertise spans the entire instrument system development life-cycle, beginning with research in advanced technologies that maximize scientific knowledge capture and delivery, infusing those technologies into instrument and data system concepts, to engineering the design and implementation.


The Instrument Electronics and Software Section is seeking an experienced Business Administration Manager to lead a team of Business Administrators and Staff Assistants in the delivery of high-quality business products and services. This position reports administratively to the Instruments Division Business Administration Manager.

In this critical role, you will:

  • Direct all aspects of Business Operations, including but not limited to: Financial Planning, Analysis and Reporting, including burden operations and investments, program, and project direct portfolios; Partner with management and Human Resources on Staffing, Employee Relations and Compensation matters; Workforce strategies; Facilities Utilization including modernization and optimization; Acquisition of goods, labor and services; Communications and Change Management; IT Security and Information Management; Property Accountability; Environmental Health and Safety Compliance
  • Be responsible for hiring, retaining and managing the performance of a highly qualified business staff
  • Be an integral member of the Section and Division Business leadership team, working with senior management to develop operating strategies to address current and anticipated organizational needs; play a critical role in meeting schedules and resolving challenges
  • Serve as a mentor, providing coaching and development opportunities to direct reports
  • Monitor the activities of the business team and make decisions on work assignments, hiring, promotions, performance appraisals and compensation
  • Foster an environment of teamwork and continuous improvement to ensure that business operations run efficiently, and maintain a high level of customer service
  • Develop, negotiate and administer the organization’s operations and investment budgets
  • Advise the Leadership team on the financial and non-financial impact of new initiatives, and participate in and/or lead the development and implementation of strategic business plans
  • Maintain a safe work environment and ensure employee awareness of and compliance with laboratory policies, procedures and regulatory requirements; serve as a primary information source for the Section
  • Act as a liaison for your organization through participation on laboratory committees


  • Typically requires a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Management, Finance or related business discipline with a minimum of 9 years of related experience; Master’s degree in similar disciplines with a minimum of 7 years of related experience. Minimum of 2 years of lead/supervisory experience
  • Wide-ranging experience and advanced knowledge in the fields of: Financial Planning, Analysis, Reporting; Human Resources, Employee Relations, Compensation; Workforce Management; Performance Management; Facilities Utilization, Modernization, Optimization; Property Accountability; Acquisitions; IT Security; Safety & Environmental Compliance
  • Proven leadership skills with the ability to motivate individuals and teams
  • Significant expertise in financial planning, analytics and reporting
  • The ability to balance multiple, competing priorities with proven accountability in completing work assignments
  • Extensive experience interpreting and implementing laboratory policies, processes and procedures
  • Demonstrated ability to work, communicate and interact effectively with a broad spectrum of diverse individuals in a team-based environment
  • Strong analytical reasoning skills and problem-solving attributes, using innovation and creativity when approaching new situations and challenges
  • Proven ability to adapt work efforts to meet rapidly changing organizational needs
  • Extensive experience participating in planning, forecasting, implementing, setting objectives and incorporating organizational goals
  • Excellent communication, interpersonal and presentation skills


Preferred Qualifications

  • Proficiency with JPL institutional business tools

Work Authorization

U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident

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JPL is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, pregnancy or perceived pregnancy, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, protected military or veteran status or any other characteristic or condition protected by Federal, state or local law.

In addition, JPL is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor.

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The Jet Propulsion Laboratory is a federal facility. Due to rules imposed by NASA, JPL will not accept applications from citizens of designated countries or those born in a designated country unless they are Legal Permanent Residents of the U.S or have other protected status under 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3). The Designated Countries List is available here.