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Executive Assistant to the Director of Development

Royal Academy of Arts
Art Marketing and PR, Art Museums and Institutions
   Location: London
   Salary: Up to £28000
Experience: Mid Level
  Organisation: Royal Academy of Arts
Deadline: 16/06/2019

About the Royal Academy of Arts

The Royal Academy of Arts is one of the UK’s foremost arts institutions and our vision is to be a clear, strong voice for art and artists. We are an innovative, forward-looking and commercially astute organisation that receives no government operating subsidy. It is a particularly exciting time in our history. We recently embarked upon a series of major investments that have transformed our physical and digital infrastructure and our public offer; delivered in time for our 250th anniversary last year. An ambitious ‘Masterplan’ by David Chipperfield RA redeveloped our 2.5-acre campus in Mayfair, uniting our two buildings and providing refurbished galleries for the display of art and architecture, a state-of-the-art auditorium, a new learning centre and a dedicated Collections gallery in Burlington Gardens, and enabling greater public visibility of the art school at the heart of the Academy.


About this position

The Development Department plays a vital role in the success and growth of the Royal Academy of Arts as a dynamic and independent institution. With no funding from the public purse, we are very reliant on our Development team to secure major funding, typically in excess of £15m in annual revenue funding, as well as significant capital requirements through an innovative and subtle approach to fundraising.

An exciting opportunity has arisen for an exceptional individual to act as a trusted aide to the Director of Development and provide full administrative support to ensure the smooth running of her office.


About you

You will have prior experience in a Personal Assistant or Senior Administrative role, ideally within a fundraising environment. Polished and professional with excellent communication skills, you will act as the friendly and welcoming first point of contact for the Director’s broad network of individuals and organisations.

Supremely well organised, you will be able to work at pace, unsupervised and use your initiative. The role will include complex diary management and travel arrangements, meeting logistics, preparation of agendas, formal minute-taking, drafting papers and responses, along with routine filing, record-keeping and any other ad-hoc personal arrangements as required. You must therefore be highly IT literate, a fast and accurate typist, with first class drafting skills and impeccable attention to detail. Raiser’s Edge and Tessitura experience is preferred but not essential.

Discreet, loyal, diplomatic, flexible and approachable, this position requires someone with excellent interpersonal skills to build and sustain strong working relationships with colleagues and Royal Academy stakeholders.


What benefits do we offer?

  • We offer a very generous pension scheme, contributing up to 10% of your salary into a defined contribution scheme.
  • In addition to 25 days’ holiday and 8 public holidays each year, we close between Christmas Eve and New Year, allowing staff further paid leave.
  • We encourage staff to attend free History of Art and life drawing classes on site. We also have a staff choir, staff gallery and running and craft clubs. Best of all, we have reciprocal agreements with many leading museums and art galleries in London and New York, enabling you to enter for free with your staff pass.
  • Our Development team enjoy annual away days and are encouraged to attend seminars, web exes and forums to keep their fundraising knowledge fresh.


Closing date for applications:         16 June 2019 (midnight)

Interviews to be held:                       week commencing 24 June 2019





JOB TITLE:                Executive Assistant to the Director of Development

DEPARTMENT:         Development

REPORTS TO:          Director of Development




Provide a comprehensive secretarial and administrative service to the Director of Development in the management and operation of the department.



  1. Provide an effective secretarial/PA service: including typing, filing and photocopying of reports, correspondence, etc. and maintaining a well-ordered and secure system for the efficient retrieval of information relating to the work of the Director.
  2. Act as first point of contact for all enquiries/queries (telephone, e-mail, voicemail, correspondence, visitors) to the Director’s office.
  3. Answer/make telephone calls/e-mails/take messages and ensure prompt transfer, as required. Draft/prepare or answer correspondence on behalf of the Director.
  4. Process incoming and outgoing mail, answer straightforward enquiries or judging when to forward to other individuals/departments; chases for information as required.
  5. Ensure Director is informed of all deadlines and report submissions for internal and external meetings and facilitate the submission of relevant information.
  6. As and when required, collate research and input from within Development and draft reports/provide skeletal content for Director of Development
  7. Update and maintain Raiser’s Edge (RE) database records on behalf of the Director.
  8. Organise Director’s diary: suggest arrangements – check and confirm, organise meetings and makes all necessary and associated arrangements; ensure Director has all necessary papers for meeting in good time for preparation;
  9. Responsible for the preparation and organisation of formal committee meetings, as well as any meeting called by the Director of Development, i.e. Development Wide Meeting. Provide associated documentation, make room bookings, draft agendas, attend meetings and take minutes/notes, transcribe notes and ensure accurate minutes for agreement, circulate and take all follow-up actions.
  10. Co-ordinate and organise Director’s travel arrangements: hotel reservations, travel tickets, itineraries, resolves problems, records details all as necessary.
  11. Meet, greet and welcome visitors for the Director. Provide refreshments, show visitors around the Academy exhibitions, all as required. Organise private visits for potential supporters.
  12. Process Director’s expenses and invoices accurately and on a regular basis – in accordance with Finance Department’s deadlines.
  13. Manage the DDI budget and track expenditure relating to the Director of Development, code invoices, process bank statements, claim petty cash and order foreign currency as and when required.
  14. Maintain up-to-date files on performance and statistics of Department finances
  15. Maintains/establishes appropriate office systems: paper and IT files, message books, bring-forward systems, diaries, office records, financial records, stationery supplies etc.
  16. Ensure that Health and Safety policies, procedures and regulations are known, understood and complied with by yourself, your team (if applicable) and any contractors, suppliers and all others who work with the team
  17. Undertake any other duties which may reasonably be allocated by the Director.



Essential qualities and skills

  • Previous Executive/Personal Assistant experience, ideally in a Development Department or similar institution
  • Able to treat all matters with absolute confidentiality, integrity and discretion
  • First class interpersonal skills, diplomatic, friendly and approachable
  • Strong drafting skills, first class written English
  • Supremely well organised, a strong project and time manager and logistician
  • Proactive rather than a reactive approach to work, able to plan into the future and pre-empt problems early and identify solutions
  • Able to work without supervision and demonstrate initiative
  • Close attention to detail
  • Highly proficient with Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Well-presented, polished with an excellent telephone manner

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