Executive Director of IT Operations and Enterprise Services

NHS Digital

London/Leeds with opportunity for flexible working

  • Location

    London/Leeds with opportunity for flexible working

  • Job type


  • Sector

    Health, Digital, Data & Technology

  • Salary/Remuneration

    To £146,450

  • Job ref


  • Expiry date

    19 September 2021

  • Client

    NHS Digital

Ref: GSe66911

NHS Digital is the national digital, data and technology delivery partner for the NHS and social care system. We create powerful tools and services that support NHS staff at work, help people get the best care, and use the nation’s health data to drive research and improve services. The scope of the products and services we provide is vast, from building and running the core IT and data infrastructure, platforms and live services on which the NHS and social care system relies, through to designing and developing digital products that help NHS and care staff do their work and that put people in control of their health and care.

During the pandemic, NHS Digital has played a crucial role, working around the clock to deliver data and insight used by key decision makers to tackle the pandemic and to plan for recovery. With a new CEO and strategic vision, we are entering an exciting phase in our development as a trusted delivery partner to the NHS and all those who rely on the unparalleled breadth and depth of the critical services it provides.

An extraordinary health and care service deserves exceptional talent to support its delivery. Whilst proud of what our amazing people have achieved to date, we are now seeking to appoint to a number of key leadership positions to drive forward our ambitious strategy and plans for the future, in support of the NHS. This is your chance to be part of an organisation that makes a very real and positive contribution to the NHS, every day and on a national scale. If you are up for a challenge of this scale and complexity, we’d love to hear from you.  

The Role 

NHS Digital is evolving its capabilities to deliver world class IT Operations and Enterprise Services to underpin large-scale transformation in the delivery of critical products and services which keep the NHS running. Reporting to the Chief Executive and working closely with the Platforms, Product Development and Data Services Directorates, the Executive Director of IT Operations and Enterprise Services will be accountable for making a vital contribution to the realisation of this vision as a key member of the Executive Management Team. Other key accountabilities include:

  • Leading a significant scale, multi-disciplinary organisation, comprising NHS Digital staff and managed service providers, to deliver a robust and resilient foundation for the running and sustainment of digital, data and technology functions across NHS Digital and the wider health and care system. This includes Executive responsibility for the collaboration and infrastructure areas.
  • Ensuring flexible, scalable, resilient, secure and cost-effective Service IT Operations, Infrastructure, Collaboration Services and Internal IT, with accountability for over 300 services including the NHS APP, NHS 111 Online and one of the world’s largest collaborative platform implementations.
  • Acting as senior operations leader for NHS Digital, directing major incident management and ensuring other incident processes work effectively 24/7, 365 days a year.
  • Managing a substantial (circa £80m) Run/Maintain budget ensuring that funding matches deliverables to meet the diverse and dynamic needs of the business and health and care system.
  • Delivering a successful transformation of the existing Live Services organisation to a contemporary Enterprise Service Operations and Management function, including a significant upgrade of the service management toolset and processes.
  • Diversifying and growing the IT Operations and Enterprise Services product and service portfolio, in response to demand from the system.

The Person

You will be an accomplished leader, comfortable working at board level within a data rich, complex, technology enabled, public, or commercial sector organisation. To succeed in this role, you will have a huge desire to support the NHS and all those it serves in the provision of world class IT Operations and Enterprise Services, together with demonstrable experience of:  

  • Leading a significant scale function in its transformation and transition to a service provision approach, including first-hand experience of having planned and overseen full programme life cycles from legacy technologies to product-based continuous operations and run/maintain.
  • Overseeing the delivery of complex, high-value, multi-disciplinary programmes in a relevant technology landscape.
  • Exemplary senior stakeholder management skills, with the ability to forge highly effective partnerships with peers and stakeholders (technical and non-technical) across complex, large-scale organisations and boundaries, securing broad based support for your vision and strategy.    
  • Building diverse, multi-disciplinary, high performing, customer focused teams, leading by example, working with HR and OD functions to successfully navigate change and deliver new ways of working.  
  • Driving transformation and standardisation of IT Operations roles and processes, building capability through a progressive approach to the consistent and effective delivery of services, benchmarked against best of breed industry standards and frameworks.
  • Exceptional commercial management capability, with vast experience of establishing first class working relationships with external partners, driving the delivery of a large cross section of vendors.


Further Information



Recruitment Timetable

Closing Date for Applications
Sunday 19 September 2021 @ 11.59pm

Preliminary Interviews with GatenbySanderson
Wednesday 29 September 2021 to Thursday 14 October 2021

Assessments, Stakeholder Engagement Exercise (SEE) & Informal Conversations (IC)
Wednesday 20 October 2021 to Friday 5 November 2021

Final Panel Interviews
Thursday 11 November 2021 &/or Friday 12 November 2021

How to Apply

To apply for this role, please submit an up to date copy of your CV, along with a Supporting Statement (no more than 2 pages) that addresses the criteria set out in the person specification, using examples to demonstrate how you meet the essential requirements. Please provide your home, work, mobile and email contact details and let us know of any dates when you are not available or where you may have difficulty with the indicative timetable. You should also provide the names, positions, organisations and contact details for two referees, one of whom should be your current or most recent employer. We will not approach your referees without your prior permission.

Once you have submitted your application, you will receive an automated email to confirm that you have applied. If you do not receive this email, please make contact with GatenbySanderson.


  1. Fit_and_Proper_Person_Declaration - Exec.docx
  2. How to write a Suitability Statement.pdf


Adrian Barlow: 07393 011150
Sundas Gull: 07545318869