Partnerships Manager

Central London (SE1 - Borough/London Bridge) or Manchester
Competitive and based on experience
07 May 2019
30 May 2019
Full Time
Contract Type

Location: Central London (SE1 - Borough/London Bridge) or Manchester

Hours: 40 hours per week

Start date: August 2019 (or earlier by agreement)

Reporting to: Head of Programmes and Impact / Head of Corporate Partnerships 

Salary: Competitive and based on experience 

Deadline: Thursday 30th May 2019 - early applications are encouraged. 

In your covering letter, please confirm your availability for interview at the below times:
5th June - 2:00pm - 5:00pm

6th June - 10:00am - 12 noon or 2:00 - 5:00pm

10th June - 2:00pm - 5:00pm

About upReach 

Do you think that your socio-economic background should determine your career prospects? upReach’s vision is of a society in which everybody has an equal opportunity to realise their full career potential. We help young people from less-advantaged backgrounds achieve their career potential by providing an intensive programme of support that addresses socio-economic barriers to graduate employment.

Our work is important because right now those from comprehensive schools are 17 times less likely than those from selective schools to secure graduate roles at some top employers.

We are an award-winning charity employer working to address this issue in partnership with employers and universities.

Building on the success of the past five years, upReach’s current partners include Aviva, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, the Civil Service Fast Stream, Coutts, Deloitte, McKinsey, Slaughter and May, Unilever and Wellcome. We also partner with universities such as Cardiff, Exeter, King’s College, Liverpool and Warwick to name a few.

This academic year, over 1100 undergraduates (we call them upReach Associates) have been supported through our unique programme of application support, soft skills workshops, video forums (small group, online seminar-style sessions), mentoring and professional experience. In 2019-20, upReach are planning to offer support to between 1200 and 1500 associates, and are growing the team accordingly, making this an exciting time to join us.

In the last two years, upReach’s turnover has more than doubled, with a team of 22 FTE currently employed.

To find out more about upReach and how we support our students, visit our ​website and read our ​Annual Report​.

The Role 

upReach are seeking to hire two new Partnerships Managers who will support on the execution of our partnerships strategy and delivery of sustainable income growth from new and existing partners in the higher education and corporate sectors. The Partnerships Managers will be supported by upReach University/Programme Leaders who have day-to-day responsibility for individual partner relationships. This includes ​responsibility for growing and maintaining university/employer partner relationships.

The successful candidates will demonstrate previous experience of managing and developing partnerships. You will be a skilled influencer with the ability to be able to manage partner relationships using a wide range of communication methods. ​It is important to identify opportunities to work with universities/corporates to meet their objectives while keeping the focus on achieving our mission to create opportunities for the upReach Associates to develop their employability skills and sector knowledge.

This is an exciting opportunity to join a diverse team of individuals who are passionate about improving social mobility. upReach have grown significantly in recent years, and with the expansion of the trustee board and creation of an advisory board and trading subsidiary, have laid the foundations for further growth in the years ahead. We aim to support 2,500 students per year by 2022.

Core Responsibilities 

Managing and developing existing partnerships  

  • Managing upReach’s portfolio of existing partners, stewarding relationships to ensure the partnerships remain strong and mutually beneficial.
  • Developing existing partnerships and identifying new opportunities to deliver greater and more diverse income.
  • Ensuring all outputs are delivered effectively and on time, in collaboration with the Delivery & Sector Managers and Programme Leaders.
  • Execute on a partner communication strategy to ensure partners are kept up to date with upReach news and events.
  • Collaborate with the other managers and programme leaders to ensure the smooth running of all partnership events and follow through on identifying and communicating impact.

Growing the number and value of University and commercial partnerships 

  • Researching and developing a new pipeline of University and Corporate partners ​to expand the sector reach and create opportunities for Associate growth.
  • Identifying gaps in the market and developing ideas for new sectors, partners and types of partnership.
  • Identifying, initiating and securing new high-value long term partnerships with universities/employers to grow income and provide more opportunities to students.
  • Preparing and delivering compelling and evidence-based pitches and presentations.
  • Maintaining the organisation’s presence in the social mobility sector through thought leadership articles/blogs and networking at relevant events.

There may also be an opportunity to be directly involved in our delivery work supporting a cohort of upReach Associates. 

The Person 

This role is most likely to suit someone with significant experience developing partnerships in the charity sector. All members of the upReach team are passionate about upReach’s mission, improving social mobility, and widening access to professional employment.



  • A proven track record in building, developing and owning effective long-term relationships with new and existing partners and at all levels of seniority
  • Experience in or knowledge of the usual ways of working within Universities/Corporate organisations
  • Understanding of the need for clarity of message, strong value-driven propositions and excellence in presentation
  • Experience in delivering varied and successful proposals and projects


  • Experience working in the charity sector
  • Experience in contract negotiation
  • Experience in qualifying, scoping, and pricing client / partner projects in the charity sector
  • Understanding of social mobility issues in the UK, the university landscape and/or graduate recruitment



  • Passion for upReach’s mission
  • Passion for working in the charity sector
  • Excellent listening skills 
  • High level of written English
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Organised with ability to prioritise a varied workload, and to manage competing demands, delivering to tight deadlines
  • Engaging communication style
  • Strong collaboration skills
  • Strong presentation skills (both written and verbal)
  • Good client management skills
  • Adaptable and flexible
  • Good project management skills
  • Be target driven and demonstrate experience of achieving financial objectives
  • Ability to work independently to find solutions, and in a small team
  • Enjoy working in a fast-paced environment
  • Be willing to travel nationally


  • Excellent IT skills, including Excel, Word, Powerpoint
  • Confident user of Google Drive/Docs and Apple software
  • Strong negotiation and problem solving skills

Application Process 

Please submit a CV and covering letter to ​​. Please specify your strongest area of experience/interest - University or Employer.

Early applications are encouraged, with a final deadline of midnight on 30th May 2019.

upReach is committed to equal opportunities and does not discriminate in employment matters on the basis of race, colour, religion, gender, age, disability, or any other protected characteristic. We value workplace diversity and the positive impact it has in organisations. We are working hard to increase diversity in our team and to making our roles and culture inclusive.

We can make reasonable adjustments throughout the application process and on the job. If you have particular accessibility needs, please get in touch and let us know any requirements you may have.

Candidates will be invited to attend upReach’s London offices near London Bridge/Borough for an assessment centre, details of which will be provided in due course. Those who will be invited to interview will be provided with full details on or before 31st May.

In your covering letter, please confirm your availability for interview at the below times.

5th June - 2:00 - 5:00pm

6th June - 10:00am - 12 noon or 2:00 - 5:00pm

10th June - 2:00 - 5:00pm

Further details 

Please email if you have any questions. 

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