Vice President, Human Resources - Sales & Marketing
Cengage Learning - Boston, MA

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As a member of the Cengage Learning Human Resources team (CLHR), the Vice President, Human Resources – Sales & Marketing (VP HR) is the senior human resources partner to the Sales & Marketing team. The VPHR is responsible for the full spectrum of Human Resources functions, which include organizational design/strategy, employee relations, staffing, manager decision support, coaching/advising, compensation, training, talent/performance management, compliance and administration. The VPHR leads development and delivery of targeted end-to-end HR solutions to build a high performing organization while maintaining a “great place to work” environment.

The VP HR is accountable for developing strong relationships with key leader constituents – particularly the Chief Sales & Marketing Officer to maximize the level and effectiveness of the organization’s people. Working with his/her team and the rest of the CL HR team, the VP HR develops and drives implementation of strategic, value-added solutions that position the company as the Employer of Choice.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities:

• Develop strong relationships with all managers, especially the Chief Sales & Marketing Officer and his leadership team, to form effective partnerships to maximize the abilities and performance of our talent; provide support, organization evaluation resources and expertise, coaching, insight and counsel to managers as appropriate.
• Develop credibility with all employees as a resource, partner, service provider and problem-solver.
• Participate in senior executive meetings and other key staff/strategy sessions; look for value-add opportunities to positively impact the business activities at both the site and overall team level.
• Represent HR in carrying out follow-up responsibilities in responding to Employee Concerns and other complaints/improper employee-related business activities; includes providing counsel and ensuring prompt investigation for all legal-related matters; ensure that appropriate legal counsel is brought into these matters.
• Effectively lead and manage staff by clearly communicating employee expectations, holding employees accountable and rewarding/recognizing goal achievement as appropriate.
• Develop the human resources team to increase the capability and strategic value of the human resource function through high levels of performance and customer service.
• Provide coaching and development for employees related to their career development and opportunities –
• Translate the strategic and tactical business plans into HR/people-oriented strategic and operational plans.
• Evaluate and advise on the impact of long range planning of new programs/strategies and regulatory action as those items impact the attraction, motivation, development and retention of the people resources of the corporation.
• A catalyst for organizational change; assist with organizational design and re-organization efforts as needed – ensure that all positions and organization structures are aligned with business objectives and desired outcomes, including when new businesses are acquired, divested or merged; write/revise job descriptions as needed.
• Assist with talent management, succession planning and staffing strategies and implementation plans and programs as appropriate.
• Support Diversity and Inclusion efforts through development of programs that allow the business unit to embrace applicants and employees of all backgrounds and to permit the full development and performance of all employees.
• Oversee the annual employee performance objective setting and review process and ensure that employees are fully aware of their standing within the company. Continually strive for a peak-performance culture.
• Manage projects that are assigned as appropriate – examples include, but not limited to – acquisition due diligence/integration, organizational restructuring, compensation reviews, merit recommendations, recruiting analysis, turnover analysis, monthly reports, etc.
• Present key findings and results from projects and discussions with employees/managers as appropriate – to HR staff, business partners and other constituencies.
• Facilitate team meetings (both HR and business partners) and training programs as needed.
• Manage budget for areas of responsibility as appropriate.
• Other duties, projects and roles as assigned.


Basic (Required)

• A bachelor’s degree with a major in human resources or business-related field
• A minimum of 10 years’ experience as a human resources professional..
• Minimum of 5 years’ experience strategically leading a Human Resources department.
• Experience supporting a Sales organization.
• Superior collaboration and communication skills with executive presence.
• In-depth knowledge of Human Resources-related laws, regulations and policy as well as experience with cutting-edge and other advanced human resources-related programs and initiatives; Experience managing employee investigations and successful at resolving issues.
• An energetic, forward-thinking and creative individual with high ethical standards, an appropriate professional image and a lead-by-example style that promotes a positive, team-based environment.
• Comfortable with ambiguity and constant change, able to methodically work through complex problems, set priorities and execute on commitments.
• Effective communication skills. An excellent facilitator who is experienced in resolving conflicts between different parties to a dispute. Strong presentation skills and comfort level with presenting to groups of all types and sizes.
• Ability to read, analyze and interpret the most complex human resource related documents.
• Strong computer skills including Outlook, Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
• 20-30% overnight travel.


• Master’s Degree
• PHR/SPHR Certification
• Previous experience in a sales-related role
• Experience in a larger corporate environment
• Experience with acquisitions and divestitures

Cengage Learning is an equal opportunity employer, committed to attracting and retaining a talented and diverse workforce. All qualified applicants receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age or veteran status.

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Cengage Learning is a leading educational content, technology, and services company for the higher education and K-12, professional and...