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Associate Director of Operations

Job ID: 7703

Updated: Mar 27, 2024

Location: New York, NY, United States

Category: Facilities/Office Services


About Kirkland & Ellis

At Kirkland & Ellis, we are united in our ambition and drive to move forward. We share core values that help us achieve excellence: collaboration, talent empowerment, service, inclusion, respect and gratitude. Our people are our greatest asset, and we invest in the brightest talent and encourage a diversity of perspectives and strengths to create dynamic teams that operate at the pinnacle of their field. Our talented professionals show up every day knowing they will engage in meaningful work, continuous learning and professional development.
As one of the world’s leading law firms, we serve a broad range of clients with market-leading practices in private equity, M&A and other complex corporate transactions; investment fund formation and alternative asset management; restructurings; high-stakes commercial and intellectual property litigation; and government, regulatory and internal investigations. We handle the most complicated and sophisticated legal matters because we don’t just meet industry standards, we create them. We bring innovation and entrepreneurialism to every engagement and, as a result, have long-standing client relationships with leading global corporations and financial sponsors. With 6,500 employees (including 3,500 lawyers) operating from 20 offices across the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, we are one of the largest law firms in the world and a top financial performer.

Essential Job Functions

In partnership with the Director of Administration (DoA), the Associate Director of Operations oversees the operations of the New York office, specifically within the Facilities, Operations, Digital & Delivery Services, and Life Safety & Security departments. The Associate Director of Operations develops strategic plans for the operational needs of the office and anticipates and provides support systems to meet time-sensitive attorney and client expectations.

The Associate Director of Operations will report directly to the DoA, with accountability to the local Operations Committee, Partners, and other various stakeholders. The individual manages a team of local functional leads and will collaborate with cross-functional and Firmwide teams responsible for analyzing and recommending applications to ensure the Firm’s ability to provide excellent services to its personnel and clients. This individual is expected to be an exceptional communicator and relationship builder as they will collaborate frequently with senior leaders across Firm offices and daily with the New York office management team.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS (This list is not exhaustive and may be supplemented and changed as necessary.)

Strategic Leadership

In collaboration with the DoA, provides overall strategic and tactical leadership to ensure all office functions and business services professionals are aligned in providing seamless client service to all local personnel; serves to implement both local and Firmwide initiatives and objectives.

Operational Leadership

Responsible for creating a culture of operational excellence, knowledge sharing, and accountability in managing business processes and activities in support of internal and external clients; develops and/or leads change management efforts across all phases of projects and initiatives to drive the Firm’s culture of continuous improvement; accurately collects, analyzes, and reports on data for all functional areas.

Financial Accountability

Develops, monitors, and maintains control of the general support services reporting departments’ budgets and staffing plans consistent with the Firm objectives and operational requirements; contributes to cost-effective management of the office; maintains and applies working knowledge of accounting procedures including analysis, negotiation, and payment of all vendor invoices.

Communication Leadership

Ensures all business services professionals are kept informed of significant office and Firmwide information; ensures proper functioning of the support services departments in accordance with organizational policies, goals, and commitments; works with all levels of New York office business services professionals to implement Firmwide policies.

Performance Management

Manages the functional leads for the Facilities, Digital & Delivery Services, and Life Safety & Security departments; collaborates with Firmwide functional leaders to provide direction to the management team through effective goal setting, coaching, reviews, and development planning; manages conflict and resolves disagreements constructively; performs and properly documents counseling sessions; determines and recommends salary adjustments; oversees the hiring and termination process.

Space Planning

Provides recommendations for space, facilities, and equipment needs, including attorney office assignments, office moves, and visitor spaces; provides leadership and expertise in all space planning and construction projects in collaboration with the Firm’s real estate department and functional leads; coordinates with stakeholders to promote client service objectives and ensure minimal disruption to client service operations; collaborates with local and Firmwide teams on the implementation of space management software.

Business Continuity/Crisis Management

Collaborates with Firmwide Security team in the oversight of NY Life Safety & Security team to provide proactive leadership in the event of a crisis, whether in the form of a natural disaster, or any other situation that potentially endangers the health, safety, and well-being of local personnel and/or the integrity of the local operation; works closely with the Firm’s leadership, local Operations Committee, building management, Firmwide, security and/or any other key department as necessary to assess the situation, establish goals, gather resources, and define action plans; responsible for coordinating open and transparent communication with the different audiences to ensure overall safety and the office’s operation remains intact and runs as smoothly as possible.

OTHER FUNCTIONS (This list is not exhaustive and may be supplemented and changed as necessary.)

  • Performs any other tasks assigned by management.

Qualifications & Requirements

Education, Work Experience, Skills

  • Minimum of 10 years of management experience in a legal or professional services organization is required.
  • Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent experience is required.
  • Superior client service and team leadership abilities as well as a high degree of independent judgment and discretion.
  • Competence in performance management, agile project management, and time management. 
  • Experience in achieving efficient space utilization and working knowledge of directing internal construction projects.
  • Expertise in providing high-quality support services, including his or her first-rate capability of identifying, analyzing, and problem-solving service-related issues. 
  • Excellent professional presentation, written, and oral communication skills.
  • Proven change management skills.


  • Proficiency in the use of software, including, but not limited to, Microsoft Office: Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Excel.
  • Must be willing to take ownership of the planned implementation of a workspace management software.


This job operates in a professional office environment.

How to Apply

Thank you for your interest in Kirkland & Ellis LLP.  To complete an application and submit your resume, please click "Apply Now."

For applicants who are based in New York City, visit the following link for pay range information:

Equal Employment Opportunity

All employment decisions, including the recruiting, hiring, placement, training availability, promotion, compensation, evaluation, disciplinary actions, and termination of employment (if necessary) are made without regard to the employee’s race, color, creed, religion, sex, pregnancy or childbirth, personal appearance, family responsibilities, sexual orientation or preference, gender identity, political affiliation, source of income, place of residence, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, age, marital status, military veteran status, unfavorable discharge from military service, physical or mental disability, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

Closing Statement

The job postings and recruiting mailbox are for candidates only. If you are a recruiter, search firm or employment agency, and do not have a signed contract with Kirkland & Ellis LLP ("K&E") and have not been asked specifically to submit candidates, you will not be compensated in any way for your referral of a candidate even if K&E hires the candidate. Direct contact with K&E employees in an attempt to present candidates is inappropriate and will be a factor in determining any future professional relationship with the Firm.