Starting date: As soon as possible
Contract Type: Consultancy
Contract Location: Home based. Dallas or Memphis are preferred options
Application closing date: Midnight 30 November GM
The Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) — the largest cotton sustainability programme in the world — aims to reach 5 million farmers worldwide with more sustainable agricultural practices, and account for 30% of global cotton production by 2020. In less than 10 years, the Better Cotton Initiative and its Partners have supported over 1.6 million farmers in 23 countries in adopting more sustainable agricultural practices. Thanks to these efforts, Better Cotton accounts for around 15% of global cotton production. We are truly a joint effort, encompassing stakeholders all the way from farms to fashion brands and civil society organisations, driving the cotton sector toward sustainability. BCI aims to transform cotton production worldwide by developing Better Cotton as a sustainable mainstream commodity.
BCI’s mission is to make cotton better for the people who produce it, the environment it grows in and the sector’s future. Under this overarching mission, the BCI Americas Operations Manager is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Better Cotton program in the United States and supporting partner programs in South America.
BCI’s presence in the US has grown rapidly over the last 5 years, with over 650 US cotton growers now engaged in the Better Cotton program, producing 370,000 metric tonnes (1.7m bales) in 2018. Most US growers are organised into groups of large farms, managed by a network of Group Assurance Implementing Partners (GA IPs). These include cotton merchants, gins and marketing cooperatives, which have been key to rapidly scaling the implementation of the Better Cotton Standard in the US. In Brazil, the Better Cotton program is delivered through a national benchmarked partner.
In line with the BCI Americas Plan, the Operations Manager will be responsible for ensuring high quality delivery of BCI programs by the US assurance team, and by recruiting and managing BCI staff members, Group Assurance Implementing Partners, consultants, third-party verifiers, and other partners. The Operations Manager will be responsible for managing existing relationships with growers and partners, and for ensuring continued growth in the amount of Better Cotton produced in these markets.
The Operations Manager will oversee the implementation of all aspects of the assurance program as well as capacity building initiatives at farm and GA IP level. The Operations Manager will also be responsible for working closely with BCI global teams to provide feedback and help inform future developments of the Better Cotton Standard System.
In addition, the Operations Manager will be responsible for managing the programme related tasks with BCI’s strategic partner in Brazil and the coordination and delivery of our benchmarked partner program.
The Operations Manager takes responsibility for delivery of country-level targets in coordination with BCI’s Implementation, Membership, and Communications teams. He/she will be accountable for delivering the annual country budget and administrative, financial and HR aspects of the Country Plans.
The Operations Manager will provide overall direction and management to the US team, in line with the country plan and overall BCI strategy. S/he will directly manage three direct reports, including one coordinator and three officers helping to build a cohesive US team. S/he would be responsible for designing and implementing an effective ‘office culture’ which includes several remote-based staff, and for ensuring good communication and alignment across this team and with London and Geneva offices.