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Advertising- Creative Services Project Manager

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Aquent is the world's largest and most successful boutique staffing firm specializing in the creative and marketing field. We place our Talent in contract engagements ranging from 2 days to 2 years! We offer the industry's best benefits that we subsidize dramatically! Medical, dental and vision benefits are available to you after just 30 days and after 90 days you are free to participate in our 401k plan! We also offer an outstanding referral bonus program where you can earn thousands of dollars just for knowing and referring talented friends!

Our client is a leader in the Telecomm industry and has asked for our help identifying candidates for a PROJECT MANAGER position.
Position: Project Manager
Location: Onsite only in Basking Ridge. Local candidates only.
Duration: 12 months with likely extension/Perm
Pay Rate: $40.00hr Max
Drug Screen, Background Check and NDA required

SPECIAL NOTE: Candidate should be open to the possibility of converting to a permanent employee.

The Senior Consultant, Agency Management will act as lead relationship manager for a number of Creative and Experiential agencies, responsible for all aspects of agency and organization partnership. S/he will manage the on time delivery of initiatives by pro-actively engaging clients, stakeholders and agencies and tracking all corresponding documentation and requirements against project plan milestones. S/he will work collaboratively with the Agency Lead – Creative & Experiential and Agency Management team, to develop, refine and implement strategic process initiatives in order to drive greater efficiency, creativity and innovation from agencies through best-in-class agency management practices.

Primary responsibilities will include some or all of the following:
Relationship Management
-Own the Agency relationship. Act as day-to-day point of contact for client, organization and stakeholders on all agency management responsibilities.
-Use subject matter expertise to counsel internal stakeholders on industry “Best Practice” to help shape decisions pertaining to key aspects of the organization’s agency stewardship efforts
- Be an advocate and an ombudsman providing an objective perspective when it comes to resolving issues or mediating disagreements.
-Provide clear and consistent communication between the partners and their respective stakeholders
-Establish and communicate clear expectations regarding agency performance leading to building strong, enduring relationships.
-Act as the “hub” of all things related to agency partners, cataloging all aspects of the client/ agency relationship and agency performance, disseminating information to all stakeholders and sharing industry insights.
-Guardian of agency calendar milestones for Agency, Client, Stakeholders and Agency Management organization.

Project Management & Reporting
• Create work plans for specific initiatives and work cross functionally with the appropriate team members and client groups in marketing.
• Provide regular management reporting on key initiatives, milestones, and performance.
• Contribute to and coordinate communication through a variety of reporting formats/vehicles including weekly/monthly management reports, agency communications, staff meetings, monthly reviews and operations reviews.
• Monitor and report on progress toward individual Agency and Departmental objectives.
• Problem solve and escalate where needed to minimize risks and achieve plan goals.
• Continually monitor process for efficiency and clarity, identify issues and suggest improvements

Budget Management
• Track and support timely approval of Agency invoices. Provide rationale and other supporting data as needed for executive approvals.
• Assist organization with communications, project management or other support to ensure expenses are incurred and paid in accordance with Verizon policies.
• Expense budget management, agency fee payments, performance tracking and management reporting as required.
• Work with Finance to report and track performance against targets and remediate as needed.

**** Manages day-to-day relationships with creative advertising agencies including contract negotiations, staffing plans, scope of work development, qualitative and business performance reviews, reporting and analysis, troubleshooting and remediation, communications and budget/financial performance . Must have understanding of advertising creative development and production process from ideation through delivery across multiple platforms. Overall knowledge of staffing models, pricing structure, performance measurement, budget development and tracking – operations and planning experience very helpful. Experience working with highly matrixed client companies, multiple internal stakeholders from marketing managers to CMO level.

Must be pro-active, continually monitor and analyze processes and be able to suggest, get buy in and implement improvements to achieve greater efficiencies. Project ownership and management skills relating to process development are important – managing timelines, setting goals and expectations and maintaining clear communications with all stakeholders as processes/projects evolve.

- REQUIREMENT: Advertising Agency experience in operations/planning/financial management, account management or project management (with planning responsibilities) OR client-side creative/media agency management/procurement experience *****

Required Skills & Experience
• 7+ years of experience in an Agency Management/Procurement role (client-side) and/or at an Agency in a Project Management, Operations or Client Services management position.
• Bachelor’s Degree
• Ability to recognize and resolve complex problems positively and professionally
• Ability to establish plans, monitor and report on program/project status
• Must be able to clearly and regularly communicate status, issues, and risks to stakeholders
• Solid ability to identify, develop and quantify any required corrective action plans
• Ability to work accurately under time pressures; and ability to work independently with minimal supervision in an environment with frequently changing business needs
• Excellent written and verbal communications skills
• Strong analytical skills and attention to detail
• Experience handling extremely confidential information appropriately
• Proficiency with MS Office suite

Individual Contributor Role
Manager of Agency Relationships and Projects: Responsible for implementation of more than one large project and oversight of several Agencies. Provides a single point of contact for those projects from original concept thru final implementation. Reports to a Manager, Band 6.

Decision Making Authority
Receives guidance and is accountable for project or program results. Exercises considerable judgment in developing methods, techniques & evaluation criteria for managing projects/agencies and obtaining results. Work is accomplished without considerable direction.

Work Complexity
Develops resolutions to complex problems that require the frequent use of creativity. Analysis of situations or data requires an in-depth evaluation of variable factors. Exercises judgment in selecting methods, techniques and evaluation criteria for obtaining results.

Knowledge and Skills
Advanced knowledge of agency structure and business practices and general knowledge of other advertising/marketing related practices. Requires independent thinking. Demands full use and application of principles, theories, concepts and technologies.

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