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Director, Research Operations

Requisition #


Physical Location

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Posted Date


Dept. Name

OSP - Reserach Operations

Hours Per Week





Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. A not-for-profit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 12 hospitals, 16 pharmacies, specialty care centers and specialty medical services that provide home care, senior transitions, hospice care, home oxygen and medical equipment, and emergency medical transportation services. Allina Health is a vibrant, growing organization with opportunities to suit your professional skills and a diverse work environment to match your specific interests. We believe employees are our greatest asset and are dedicated to helping you develop and maximize your professional skills.

The Commons, located in Minneapolis, is the headquarters of Allina Health, a not-for-profit health care organization serving patients and communities. Approximately 1,600 corporate and administrative service employees work at offices within Midtown Exchange, the site of the historic Sears retail complex at Chicago Avenue and E. Lake Street. This community landmark, adjacent to the campus of Abbott Northwestern Hospital, part of Allina Health, is the second largest building in Minnesota and includes offices, an internationally themed public market and residential units.



Req ID: 47919
Overview – Who we are and who we serve
Allina Health serves our communities by providing exceptional care, as we prevent illness, restore health and provide comfort to all who entrust us with their care.

We live our mission by doing what’s right for our patients and our future. We live our mission by creating a culture of Whole Person Care—an approach that recognizes all factors impacting health are connected – mind, body, spirit and community.

To grow Whole Person Care more fully, it’s not enough to practice with patients. We must also nurture it for ourselves and among each other. We will enable an environment that supports Whole Person Care so that employees can cultivate a relationship with self to foster self-compassion, self-awareness, mindfulness and joy in order to thrive and contribute positively to their personal and professional environment.

We will enable an environment that supports Whole Person Care so that employees can build healthier relationships with colleagues so that our environment is trusting, supportive, compassionate and collaborative.

First and foremost, our ability to provide Whole Person Care begins with fostering and maintaining an environment where everyone can expect to be treated with the utmost respect, and everyone is held accountable for doing so. Those are values that we hold dear, and are nonnegotiable for all of us.

Position Purpose
The Director of Research Operations provides leadership and oversight to research operations, office of sponsored programs, research finance, budgeting, and provides support to clinical and health services research / researchers at Allina Health. Managing across a matrix organization and reporting to the Vice President-Research, the Director will facilitate processes so that physicians, researchers and staff can grow and expand their clinical investigation, clinical trial and grant portfolio.

Key duties include assurance that all research proposals and activities are in compliance with Allina and sponsor policies, procedures and guidelines; ensuring efficient and effective processes for clinical trial contract and grant management starting with budgeting preparation through final disposition; providing effective leadership to the Office of Sponsored Projects team; and facilitating collaboration amongst all research areas. The Director will prioritize complex situations to plan strategically (“big-picture”) and to respond tactically to manage resources, conflict etc. (“problem solve”).

Allina Health is committed to building a nationally recognized center for healthcare research and innovation positioned to advance patient care and health in their community. This position will ensure that research functions effectively and efficiently from an administrative perspective and in compliance with all appropriate regulations impacting the research activities – within Allina, in the community, and across the industry – which deliver greater value for stakeholders.

Principal Duties
  • Reports to the Vice President Research (VPR) and provides oversight of all clinical trial contracts, research agreements, operational finance and budgets, intellectual property and pre/post award grant management.
  • Oversee and manage Office of Sponsored Programs: which include Allina’s Research Billing Compliance and Government Awards Compliance Programs.
  • Support VPR in operational finance, departmental budgeting.
  • Provides direction and subject matter expertise to clinical trial contract/ grant budgeting, and management of research billing compliance.
  • Provides subject matter expertise and direction for pre-award and post award activities. Assist principal investigators and grant managers in the development and submission of accurate proposal budgets and compliant proposal materials by interpreting sponsor finance and compliance guidelines as well as Allina policies and federal regulations.
  • Develop and review proposal/contract budgets for accuracy, appropriate rates, allowability/allocability of costs proposed and recommend changes when appropriate.
  • Ensure proposed cost sharing is approved, implemented and properly documented and ensure that all required documentation for subcontractors is complete prior to submission of proposals.
  • Manage all aspects of pre and post awards grants management, including yearly reporting requirements.
  • Provide PI, research staff and administrative leaders with timely information and advice on financial and compliance aspects of contract and proposal preparation and submissions.
  • Interpret complex fiscal regulations and guidelines from myriad of sponsored and non-sponsored funding sources.
  • Review announcements of funding opportunities and program announcements to ensure that grant /contract templates and proposals conform to sponsor’s requirements.
  • Development and implementation of external contracts necessary e.g. establishment of sub-award/sub-contract structure with other organizations.
  • Manage research agreements, data use agreements, provider arrangements for research.
  • Lead strategic workgroup for operational excellence and implement LEAN processes within research department. Lead departmental quality efforts, investigates customer issues, recommends and implements process improvements. Identify and champion opportunities to improve service to researchers.
  • In partnership with VPR, and Director- Innovation, work on implementation of Allina Health IP policy. Work closely with other research directors to establish vetting procedures for innovation pipeline. Manage research innovation portfolio.
  • Work with other administrative Research Directors to implement institutional policies and procedures for research.
  • Manage diverse staff including Managers, contract and grant experts. Leverage capabilities and resources effectively.
  • Work closely with other administrative leaders to manage EPIC Research Functionality, grant and contract management systems.
  • Establish pool of research coordinators/research regulatory specialists for overall support of research.
Policies and ProceduresDirect the development of policies and procedures relating to research budgeting, research administration, research finance and operations.
Invoice and Payment ManagementOversee the invoicing of sponsors and payments received and ensuring appropriate payment allocations to participating departments.
AuditParticipate in internal or external audits of department grants/contracts by providing information and documentation as requested and take appropriate action following audit reviews
Staff managementDirect and coordinate staff, systems and procedures related to processing of sponsor-supported grants, contracts and agreements; manage daily activities of the grants and contracts group; develop goals and objectives for the group.
Cross departmental relationship buildingBuild collaborative relationships across departments- research houses, legal, IS, Finance, and other Allina Health departments.
Manage conflict and build positive relationships in a highly matrixed organization. Monthly meetings with research and administrative leaders


  • BA / BS;
  • Masters/MBA/PhD preferred.


  • Requires 5-7+ years experience in a research environment with extensive knowledge of research program administration guidelines of federal and non-federal research sponsors supporting research activities in a health care environment.
  • Extensive knowledge in clinical trial contract management, budget negotiations with sponsors, and research agreements.
  • Full comprehensive knowledge of federal regulations, sponsor specific policies, intellectual property policies, conflict of interest requirements, publication rights, application of indirect cost rates, and other complex concepts in research administration.
  • Knowledge of technology transfer and intellectual property and experience managing innovation portfolio.
  • Knowledge of and ability to interpret and apply sponsor, institutional, and departmental financial and compliance policies.
  • Ability to manage high volume and complex transactions.
  • Experience with all types of award mechanisms including grants, contracts, subcontracts, and cooperative agreements.
  • Requires independent judgment and strong organization and communication skills, as well as a customer service focus.
  • Current on compliance regulations in all areas of research administration.
  • Understands unique nature of managing research contracts and grants within a traditional corporate accounting structure.
  • Knowledge of general accounting principles, financial management of operations.
  • At least 5+ years personnel management experience in research setting either in academic environment or health care setting.

Work Schedule

8am-5 pm

Location/Community Information

Minneapolis boasts being both cosmopolitan yet small enough that you can find a place to call home whether on a lake, golf course, or in an adjoining suburb. With the fast pace of activity there are professional sports, theater, or enough parks for a quiet walk. The area has numerous schools and colleges, both public or private, and enough teams for all weekend athletes to join.

  • Located in Minneapolis
  • Population = 380,000
  • Service Area = 2,882,245

Community Resource Links:

Community Information School Digger

Explore Minnesota MN Dept of Education

Minneapolis St. Paul MagazineSt. Paul Pioneer Press

Twin Cities Living MagazineStar Tribune


If you are interested in becoming part of our award winning team of professionals, please apply online today. Allina Health is committed to providing Equal Employment Opportunities to all employees and applicants. EO M/F/Disability/Vet Employer.

Requisition #

Executive / Mgmt / Supervisory, Research