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Pearson Director, Vocational Qualifications Assessment in London, United Kingdom

Director, Vocational Qualifications Assessment

To add life to a lifetime of learning

Pearson leads the education sector in the development of its vocational qualification (VQ) products and services. The VQ offer includes qualification products and services across all major subjects, sectors and levels and they are delivered in the UK and internationally. Our mission is to add life to a lifetime of learning.

Our qualifications are developed against benchmarks to ensure that we equip learners with the underpinning knowledge, skills and behaviours needed for them to be successful in their careers. We also make sure that we support those delivering our qualifications with high quality learning solutions and continuous professional development. Alongside these developments, we complement our offer by ensuring that, for the future, our solutions are offered digitally. The scope of this role extends to the following Vocational Qualifications delivered in the UK and Internationally:

BTEC (Introductory through to level 3)

Technical Qualifications, offered by Pearson under contract from IfATE as part of T Levels

Functional Skills, ESOL and Skills qualifications

Work-based learning including Professional and Specialist qualifications and Pearson’s EPA provision

Higher Nationals and Professional qualifications

We believe education is a vital force that can empower people, help them to reach their potential and contribute to both individual growth and wider economic growth. Our strength comes from our outstanding people; our strong relationships in the education world; our expertise in using technology to help people learn; our global footprint and local reach; and our position as a profitable, global company with a unifying sense of purpose - to help people make progress in their lives.

About the Division

The Vocational Qualifications division under Pearson Workforce Skills, supports over one million learners a year, employs circa 900 people and generates substantial revenue across the UK and International portfolio. The division is responsible for developing qualifications &assessment content and managing assessments and quality assurance activities across the vocational portfolio which is sold in the UK and Internationally to schools, colleges, training providers, employers and consumers.

About the role - summary:

The Director, Vocational Qualifications Assessment will be accountable for the development and delivery of vocational qualifications and assessments for Pearson’s portfolio of vocational qualifications and services, as well as responsible for the accuracy and timeliness of quality assurance activities and outcomes, working with key stakeholders within and outside of Pearson to achieve this. The post holder will lead a large team (c.150) and report to the VP Delivery & Transformation. They will be an experienced and accomplished assessment and content expert, willing to think critically and differently to respond effectively to different situations. They will be willing to work flexibly and be available for peak processing times, including the lead up to annual results release in August. A problem solver and critical thinker, they will also be conversant in technical discussions and have experience of working in a regulated environment.

Main responsibilities:

Customer Experience

  • Accountable for the provision of excellent assessment service & guidance for vocational customers, ensuring the assessment team meets service levels as well as regulatory guidelines and supporting the customer services team to improve the CSAT for vocational assessment.

  • Maintaining relationships with sales, product, regulatory, customer services and technology teams and other relevant teams across Pearson to ensure effective resolution of any customer issues and feeding improvement opportunities into the vocational assessment process.

  • Working cross functionally to ensure a high quality, effective and accurate end-to-end assessment process to provide an exceptional customer and learner experience.

Outcome Management

  • Accountable for setting, reviewing and achieving key performance indicators that span across content quality, assessment & marking accuracy and quality assurance.

  • Responsible for the most efficient use of resources, managing associated budgets and reporting against respective KPIs.

  • Partnering with colleagues in the Vocational Delivery & Transformation team to ensure vocational delivery costs are appropriately allocated and accounted for.

  • Cooperating with the portfolio management team to ensure that product and assessment performance data is shared across teams to enable effective review, continuous improvement and consideration of all associated delivery costs.

Quality Management

  • Accountable for the on-time and accurate delivery of results and assessment outcomes for vocational assessments.

  • Working with relevant colleagues to ensure that the whole assessment lifecycle is supported, improved and delivered effectively, efficiently and to a high-quality standard.

  • Driving the transformation of QA activities to balance quality, deliverability and cost, ensuring QA outcomes and KPIs are defined and monitored

  • Working with the Assessment Transformation Lead to surface new opportunities with AI and other technologies to understand and implement trials of new Quality Assurance activities.

  • Ensuring all vocational assessment processes adhere to quality principles and agreed quality standards and measures.

  • Working with the regulation leads and Responsible Officer to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and the ongoing consultation and review of these.

  • Working closely with the Assessment operations and processing teams.

Regulation and Compliance

  • Act as the Quality Sponsor to ensure the continued certification for ISO 9001

  • Ensure regular review of the departments BCP/BIA/DR plans and supporting documentation

  • Work with colleagues to ensure the continued compliance or escalation of non-compliance in line with the relevant Regulatory conditions, e.g Ofqual’s Conditions of Recognition.

  • Represent Pearson’s Vocational Qualifications at stakeholder events, including those hosted by Ofqual, DfE, JCQ, IfATE, Licencing Bodies and others.

  • Act as Pearson signatory for contracts relating to third party provision of assessment services

Transformation and Innovation

  • Establishing the organisational design and operational as well as strategic budgets for the development of content and assessment of qualifications.

  • Partnering with the Programme Management Office to ensure that priorities for technology and product development are aligned and enabled through process review and effective engagement across teams.

  • Leading the use of new technologies to support the development of innovative approaches to assessment and quality assurance.

  • Driving efficiency and effectiveness as well as promoting agile ways of working to support a wider divisional approach to transformation.

People Management

  • Accountable for the leadership, direction and performance management for a team of over 150 members of staff.

  • Accountable for the appropriate recruitment, quality and accuracy of performance of our assessment associates, who work across content, assessment and quality assurance.

  • Promoting a culture of partnership, teamwork and innovation.

  • Acting as an ambassador for Pearson’s vocational products.

Desired leadership competencies:

Strategic thinking, Creative thinking and customer empathy, Communication, relationship building and influencing, Digitally focused, Innovative & curious, Customer focused, Leading and managing ,Change Management Capability ,Values driven, Results orientated.


Essential skills, qualifications and experience:

  • Level 3 qualifications (Vocational such as BTEC or A Levels)

  • Passion for education and learner / customer centric

  • Awareness of the vocational education landscape including an understanding of BTEC and technical products and services

  • Awareness of the UK education market and environment including schools, colleges, private training providers, employer environment

  • Substantial knowledge of regulatory environment concerning vocational and general qualifications

  • Demonstrable experience of leading efficiently and effectively the delivery of large-scale assessment processes across a range of qualifications, vocational and general

  • Resilience, flexibility, ability to deal with ambiguity and stress, and respond quickly and robustly to changing demands

  • Ability to lead others effectively through environment of constant change and increasing demands

  • Demonstrable experience of budgetary planning and financial performance management

  • Operational delivery experience including management of an operations cycle

  • Experience in supporting a growth business and change management Leading and motivating a large and diverse team

Pearson is an equal opportunities employer. We do not discriminate against employees or job applicants and select the best person for each job based on relevant skills and experience.

We are also committed to building an accurate picture of the make-up of the workforce and encouraging equality and diversity.

The information you provide will stay confidential, and be stored securely. It will not be seen by those involved in making decisions as part of the recruitment process.


What to expect from Pearson

Did you know Pearson is one of the 10 most innovative education companies of 2022?

At Pearson, we add life to a lifetime of learning so everyone can realize the life they imagine. We do this by creating vibrant and enriching learning experiences designed for real-life impact. We are on a journey to be 100 percent digital to meet the changing needs of the global population by developing a new strategy with ambitious targets. To deliver on our strategic vision, we have five business divisions that are the foundation for the long-term growth of the company: Assessment & Qualifications, Virtual Learning, English Language Learning, Workforce Skills and Higher Education. Alongside these, we have our corporate divisions: Digital & Technology, Finance, Global Corporate Marketing & Communications, Human Resources, Legal, Strategy and Direct to Consumer. Learn more at We are Pearson.

We value the power of an inclusive culture and also a strong sense of belonging. We promote a culture where differences are embraced, opportunities are accessible, consideration and respect are the norm and all individuals are supported in reaching their full potential. Through our talent, we believe that diversity, equity and inclusion make us a more innovative and vibrant place to work. People are at the center, and we are committed to building a workplace where talent can learn, grow and thrive.

Pearson is an Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Employer and a member of E-Verify. We want a team that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives and skills. The more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. All employment decisions are based on qualifications, merit and business need. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, ethnicity, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, national origin, protected veteran status, disability status or any other group protected by law. We strive for a workforce that reflects the diversity of our communities.

To learn more about Pearson’s commitment to a diverse and inclusive workforce, navigate to: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Pearson.

If you are an individual with a disability and are unable or limited in your ability to use or access our career site as a result of your disability, you may request reasonable accommodations by emailing

Note that the information you provide will stay confidential and will be stored securely. It will not be seen by those involved in making decisions as part of the recruitment process.


Organization: Workforce Skills

Schedule: FULL_TIME

Req ID: 13177