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Director of Construction

Job No: ViVA185
Location: Toronto

 

Life is our Work.

Position: Director of Construction
Department: Construction & Design, Home Office
Location: Toronto, Ontario

 
You.

You are not looking for a job, You are looking to contribute to something greater. You thrive on the opportunity to make a real difference in people’s lives. This is reflected in your commitment to connecting with people and delivering results. A true self-starter, you take pride and ownership in what you do. Most importantly, you’re a great team player!

  
Us.

What do you get when a team of experienced industry professionals combine their passion and decide it is time to raise the bar in the retirement living industry? You get V!VA Retirement Communities. At V!VA, we aren’t about grand statements or lofty ideals. We are a group of Canadians committed to bringing the right mix of people together to inspire each other and deliver the highest standards of customer service and performance in the retirement living sector. At V!VA, we put people first. We are looking for just the right person who shares V!VA’s mission – Making Today Great!

 
Life at V!VA.

V!VA’s vision is to create places where people live, laugh and love…for both our Team Members and Community Members alike. To work at V!VA Home Office means being a team player and supporting the needs of our Communities, which in turn allows them to focus on making everyday great for everyone in their Community. Reporting to the President, you will have an opportunity to make a difference, contribute the skills you have developed and learn new one’s in our quest to be a great employer and have fun doing it!

 
The Role.

As the Director of Construction your primary responsibility will be to provide support in obtaining new sites, lead the construction and design process for new communities and oversee renovations projects at exisiting communities.

 

The Role Profile

This position is responsible for the coordination of all V!VA’s construction and renovation.  As the owner’s representative, it creates the initial construction and renovation budget to determine project feasibility and engages required outside resources (architects, consultants, etc.) along with internal team resources.  Working with V!VA’s construction management firm (“CMF”), the Director of Construction ensures that design and construction costs stay on time and on budget throughout the process.  This is accomplished through the administration of the construction management contract and internal administration and coordination with V!VA team members.  The position reports to the President. The Construction Project Manager, the Project Coordinator and the Design Coordinator report to the Director of Construction.

The Director of Construction is part of V!VA’s larger development team.  The construction schedule ties into the overall Development Timeline (“DT”). The DT encompasses not only construction, but also the schedule for pre-opening operations, marketing and Furniture Fixtures Equipment (“FFE”).  It is crucial that the Director of Construction update the construction schedule to reflect current progress and delays and ensure that V!VA has the most current information for the DT.  That way, if timing on construction milestones change, the DT can be updated allowing operations, marketing and procurement timelines to adapt accordingly.

While V!VA puts a great deal of importance on life-work balance, the Director of Construction is not a “9 to 5” position and occasionally requires travel.  There will be many occasions, as well as crucial deadlines, where the Director of Construction will be required to arrive at a project site early in the morning, or work evenings or weekends.


Key Responsibilities

The Director of Construction’s key responsibilities, in collaboration with his/her team, shall include, but are not limited to:

Community Openings and Renovations:

  • Collaboration with Development Team:
    • Work with the Director of Development on potential sites due diligence;
    • Provide Director of Development with construction support to assist in obtaining municipal approvals; and,
    • Work with DOD in engaging key initial consultants.
  • Design Management:
  • Value Engineering: analyze drawings and spec books and provide consultants with direction to design in more efficient and cost-effective ways while maintaining the V!VA brand;
  • Review all drawings to ensure proper coordination between drawings and consultants and V!VA;
  • Manage the planning and coordination of the building design (interior and exterior) between Design Coordinator and the Construction and Operations teams; and,
  • Create and maintain and update V!VA construction and design brand standards.
  • Budgeting:
    • Liaise with the Director of Finance throughout all projects on proforma budgets and monthly updates.
    • Prepare a construction budget for each V!VA project;
    • Monitor budget through the course of a project;
    • Interview and approve the CMF’s proposed construction team (site super, project manager, etc) for each V!VA project;
    • Supervise the CMF;
    • Establish a tracking and filing system in V!VA to track all site paperwork including: all RFI, change orders, site instructions, minutes, tenders, contracts, drawings and closeout documents, etc.
    • Review and approve, with the Director of Finance, all monthly draws prepared by CMF;
    • Manage all disputes with trades on billings; and,
    • Approve and manage all extras, credits and back charges
  • Tender Management:
    • Negotiate management contract with the CMF on a project by project basis, for approval by the President;
    • Review and revise all tender drawings and spec books to ensure quality and completeness;
    • Pre-qualify trades with CMF;
    • Review tenders sent to trades;
    • With CMF, analyze tenders and negotiate directly with trades;
    • Approve all sub-trade contracts issued by CMF, then get final approval from President: and
    • Build trade and consultant connections and/or utilize existing strong network of trade contacts upon which we can draw resources.
  • Site Visits, Inspections and Building Turnover:
    • Attend site meetings;
    • Review and approve minutes of all site meetings;
    • Ensure V!VA is following-up on all items they are responsible for vis a vis construction;
    • Spend appropriate time on construction site, which will include monitoring the progress of construction and ensuring the CMF team is properly managing site;
    • Deal directly with trades as required; and,
    • Coordinate a thorough and complete handover of new and/or renovated communities from manufacturers/installers to Operations team.
  • Construction Deficiencies Handling:
    • Prepare and manage a comprehensive deficiencies list (in cooperation with the CMF Operations);
    • Coordinate and manage completion of all post-opening deficiencies; and,
    • Ensure that the building is inspected and passed at the completion of construction.
  • Human Resources and Leadership:
    • Provide strong leadership to the Construction & Design team;
    • Foster an environment of innovation, collaboration and professional growth by providing effective coaching and guidance to the team;
    • Establish a culture of high accountability through effective team and individual meetings, performance discussions and transparency in performance expectations;
    • Establish a cohesive and collaborative team by maximizing on each team member’s potential and strengths;
    • Support team members in their professional development and position the department for expansion to meet our business needs;
    • Effectively manage the work being completed by CMF, project consultants and municipal entities; and
    • Through effective leadership, foster a workplace culture where team members, contractors and consultants alike are committed and enthusiastic about their work and contribution to V!VA’s success.
  • Strategic Thinking and Execution:
    • Partner with the V!VA Executive Team in the implementation of the company’s strategic plans and objectives with specific ownership on the Design and Construction strategy;
    • Plan and coordinate Design and Construction activities and initiatives so they align to overall plans and consider other stakeholder departments; and,
    • Lead project management ensuring efficient processes and practices are created and maintained, facilitating achievement of project objectives and company priorities
  • Other Accountabilities:
    • Review geotechnical and environmental reports, budgeting, phase 1’s and 2’s, other site investigations and reports and analyses etc., as may from time to time be required in the course of due diligence and construction;
    • Leasehold work and reworking/renovating of buildings;
    • Maintenance assistance for operations; and,
    • In general, work that would fall under the category of construction related items.

 

The Ideal Candidate:

Candidates who will be attracted and succeed in this role will have a high degree of energy, entrepreneurial mindset, and are an experienced real estate construction leader with a track record of and reputation for success in a design and construction function to support the achievement of significant profitability and growth.

These competencies and skills sets will be essential for this role:

  • Technical Experience & Expertise - Possesses a track record of success in a leadership position in a construction and real estate management function having successfully achieved important initiatives to improve portfolio value. Possesses strong real estate knowledge attained through having worked for more than one organization. 
  • Negotiation Skills – Demonstrated ability to negotiate favourable agreements, pragmatically assessing alternatives and trade-offs to reach agreements that all parties believe address their needs. Clearly understands that negotiation approach and outcomes provide the foundation for a positive long-term relationship. Builds ongoing relationships with various stakeholders to address their concerns and facilitate seamless renewal of agreements.
  • Business Acumen – Extremely strong business and financial management skills with the demonstrated ability to develop budgets, identify costs/expenses, manage financial assets and resources responsibly. Ability to assess current situations in the context of the business opportunities and threats. Is computer literate and has experience working with project planning software, etc.
  • Planning and Project Management - Completes major projects on time and within acceptable financial parameters. Is able to build project plans and processes that are realistic, efficient, and meet business objectives. Recognizes the importance of human component of any project and appropriately engages stakeholders to optimize their contribution to the accomplishment of project objectives.
  • Results Orientation – Exhibits a decisive approach with a determined focus on objectives and achieving results. Demonstrates a clear sense of urgency and accountability, as well as an ability to quickly address developing shortfalls, crafting and executing backup strategies to ensure achievement of a plan. With a data-based orientation, can solve complex problems and course correct in a timely manner.
  • Flexibility – A demonstrated ability and willingness to shift direction and focus based on rapidly changing business demands.
  • Organization and Initiative – Has proven ability to plan, organize and prioritize work effectively, and manage time appropriately to meet deadlines. Demonstrates the ability to rethink work methods and actively seeks out opportunities to continuously learn and keep knowledge base current. Sets objectives, establishes checkpoints to monitor progress and maintains a balanced perspective on work priorities.
  • Innovation – Ability to demonstrate and encourage new idea generation and create a culture where people can think outside traditional ways of doing things, take calculated risks and challenge the status quo to generate new ideas, practices and approaches to affect change and reflect the innovative culture within the business. Skilled at developing a proactive, can-do approach and culture within the team. 
  • Relationship Management – Possesses excellent interpersonal skills. Is able to lead and/or influence others in order to have a specific impact or effect. Adept at developing and sustaining co-operative working relationships with team members, senior management, community members, contractors, suppliers and the public.  Exhibits an understanding of the business and what makes it successful, what drives the various stakeholders and has an interest in creating mutually beneficial solutions.  Demonstrates a high degree of personal integrity and managerial courage.
  • Effective Communication – Possesses superior verbal, written and presentation communication skills. Able to distil complex issues and articulate a compelling case in support of the required decision. Able to actively listen, adjust content and approach to effectively communicate with stakeholders at various levels.
  • Team Player & Leadership – Is considered by those who have worked with him/her to be a superb team player and inspiring leader. Believes strongly that success is achieved through the efforts of the team, not one individual.  Willing to share his/her thoughts and opinions with others and seeks input from others when developing plans. Holds self and other accountable for established plans and agreed-upon targets. Equally important, understands V!VA Home Office’s purpose is to serve the needs of our Community Teams so they deliver on our promise to our Community Members, to create places where people can live, love and laugh.
  • Orange Dot Values – Incorporates the Orange Dot Values in all aspects of work and interaction with Team Members, Community Members and outside professional services.

 

Specific Qualifications:

  • Post graduate technical diploma/degree (or equivalent) and 10 years of progressive relevant experience, both Corporate and project site.
  • Strong project management skills, understanding of procedures for planning and processing development projects and for establishing plans, specifications, construction, and inspection for projects.
  • Understanding of basic and advanced building systems and technologies.
  • Cost estimating and tracking and scheduling skills for capital projects.
  • Proficient with MS Project or other project planning software, MS Office, Word and Excel.
  • Understanding of pertinent local, provincial and federal laws, regulations, and enforcement procedures related to the project and WSIB.
  • Ability to effectively lead and motivate a team.
  • Ability to grow and develop a team to suit business needs.
  • Ability to work independently and as a team player with strong customer service orientation.
  • Detail oriented.
  • Ability to sit and stand for long periods of time. Ability to access all parts of a construction site.
  • Drivers License and Car.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English are essential.

 

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