Associate Director, Building Services

Industry: Facilities Management
Location: Maryland - College Park
Sector: Higher Education
Search ID: 21-0801-14
Matthew D. Lesher
Matthew D. Lesher


The University of Maryland has retained Helbling to conduct an executive search to secure an Associate Director, Building Services.

Position Summary / Purpose of Position

The Associate Director is a member of the department’s leadership team responsible for delivering housekeeping and pest management services 24 hours/day, year round, to over 10,000 residents. As part of the leadership team, the person will provide input and participate in decision making that will directly contribute to operational excellence for the entire Department of Residential Facilities (DRF) organization. The Associate Director is responsible for over 125 staff and an approximate $10 million operating budget. The Associate Director will be expected to serve as a key partner and advisor to DRF’s Director of Residential Facilities.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Department Leadership – 30% of Time:
  • Participates on the DRF leadership team, contributing to the success of the entire DRF organization.  
  • Actively participates in developing departmental goals, priorities, and setting clear team performance expectations.  
  • Defines and reviews service and performance standards for personnel and building systems, and analyzes data for informed decision making.  
  • Assures all delivered services comply with campus, state and federal building, construction, fire, and life safety/health codes.  
  • Embraces and champions a culture of safety excellence.  
  • Fosters and leads the building services organization with a culture of engagement and inclusivity in which all employees are treated with respect and professionalism. 
  • Engages with staff during performance review and professional development HR cycles to encourage the growth and advancement of all employees.
Service Delivery and Operational Management – 30% of Time:
  • Continually seeks feedback and monitors, evaluates, and adjusts teamwork initiatives, operational excellence, and service strategies.  
  • Works with the leadership team to evaluate efficiency and effectiveness of services provided through use of the business’s automated quality assurance program, providing for daily inspections, data collection, and analysis for service improvements.  
  • Defines, develops, and reviews inventory management and asset control procedures consistent with department, campus, and state guidelines for capital inventory, non-capital inventory, and sensitive equipment. 
  • Oversees response for after-hours, weekend, and holiday housekeeping emergencies.  
  • Advises managers, supervisors, and employees on resolution of difficult, persistent operational, or building related issues.  
Stakeholder Management and Service Provider – 30% of Time:
  • Establishes and promotes an organizational culture where effective service to students, parents, and staff is a top priority.  
  • Establishes successful relationships with key campus partners who share responsibility in delivering services to our students, summer guests, and support staff.  
  • Responds to inquiries from residents, parents, and staff in a calm, constructive, positive, empathetic manner to investigate situations/complaints and establish a plan for corrective action.  
  • Makes appropriate contacts and coordinates with different internal departments and external organizations to ensure the delivery of routine and essential services to all buildings and the campus community.  
  • Collaborates with various campus departments and operating partners to ensure services are completed, coordinated, or managed appropriately to effectively support the mission of Student Affairs. Regularly communicates with partner departments across the University to build trust and a positive working relationship. 
Fiscal Stewardship – 10% of Time:
  • Responsible for administering the Building Services unit budget and inventory with the ability to quickly make independent decisions.  
  • Responsible for procuring and managing contractors.  
  • Meets with direct reports to review expenditures, assists in the preparation of each subsequent year’s budget, and assures that managers provide relevant details to assist in the preparation of routine year-end projections.    
  • Exercises fiduciary responsibility in the oversight and delivery of quality departmental services.

About the University of Maryland

The University of Maryland, College Park, one of the nation’s premier research universities, seeks a forward-thinking and action-oriented change leader as the Department of Residential Facilities’ (DRF) Associate Director, Building Services.

Founded in 1856, the University of Maryland (UMD) at College Park is the flagship institution of the University System of Maryland, ranking in the top 25 for all public U.S. research institutions, as well as ranking 15th for most innovative school, 8th for best college value, and 9th for entrepreneurship for undergraduates. A global leader in research, entrepreneurship and innovation, the University is home to more than 41,000 students; 14,000 faculty and staff; and 300 academic programs. The faculty includes numerous Nobel Laureates, Pulitzer Prize winners, and members of the national academies.  

UMD’s 1,340-acre campus is designated as an arboretum and botanical garden. It is located eight miles from Washington, D.C. in the Baltimore-Washington, D.C. corridor and offers unparalleled proximity to cultural, government, and entertainment venues. The University is committed to attracting and retaining outstanding and diverse faculty and staff who support the school’s mission and values.

The University has an active capital program with more than $1 billion of new investment into the campus expected in the coming years, and it has been engaged in several large-scale capital projects, including construction of new classroom and research facilities, infrastructure expansion, and major redevelopment of student housing amongst other projects. In addition, the University is an active participant in the collaborative efforts to enhance the surrounding community to create a sustainable Top 20 college town.

Helpful Links


Key Competencies, Knowledge, and Skills

  • Collaborative interpersonal skills to lead with compassion, energy, and empathy that can engage a large and culturally diverse union workforce and sustain a trusted working relationship with campus partners, residents, and staff.  
  • Comprehensive knowledge and skill in the methods, techniques, and staffing standards of the commercial cleaning industry as well as OSHA/MOSH regulations related to the trade.
  • Knowledge of best practices in inventory control and distribution of equipment and supplies.
  • Ability to lead an organization through change by enabling employee engagement and involvement.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and excellent problem-solving abilities.
  • Considered an essential worker and must be available after hours to respond to emergency situations.
  • Proven ability to thrive in a fast-paced environment.
  • Must have the desire and ability to operate as a member of a team along with the ability to lead others through challenging circumstances.
  • Must have the ability to work in, and contribute to, a continuous improvement organization.
  • Holds a valid driver’s license in good standing.
Required Education
The successful candidate will have a bachelor’s degree in facilities management, business management, or a related field.
Required Experience
Minimum 10 years in a facilities management organization and a minimum of five (5) years of supervisory experience of housekeeping staff. Experience working in a comparable sized housekeeping operation and working knowledge of green cleaning standards and APPA standards.
Preferred Qualifications
  • Registered Environmental Services Executive (RESE) certification from IEHA/ISSA, Certified Healthcare Environmental Services Professional (CHESP) from AHA, or similar certification from APPA.
  • Demonstrated experience in leading a union workforce.
  • Bilingual – Spanish/English desired.

Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity

The University of Maryland is an Equal Employment/Affirmative Action employer. We do not discriminate in hiring on the basis of sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, color, religious creed, national origin, physical or mental disability, protected Veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law.

If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the employment process, please contact Staff Relations at 301.405.0001 and let us know the nature of your request and your contact information. Requests for accommodation will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please note that this phone number cannot be used to check the status of an application for employment.