PMO Manager

Cambridge, UK

The company

Our mission is to save 100,000 lives and $1.5B in healthcare costs

It is a stark reality that 1 in 2 of us will get cancer. From our parents to our partners, our children, our grandchildren. We must find better ways to treat it, but more importantly better ways to detect cancer earlier, when chances of a cure are dramatically higher.

Every time you breathe out there are thousands of chemicals on your breath, some of these are markers of cancer. In our labs in Cambridge we are developing a cancer breathalyzer - we are using our Breath Biopsy® platform to detect these chemical markers earlier when more people will survive.

The role

The PMO manager is an integral part of the Owlstone organisation and forms part of the cornerstone to which everything happens. We have built the PMO to be a world class function and is something that we are extremely proud to have.

The PMO manager is responsible for ensuring Owlstone has the best Project talent with the capabilities to delivery projects critical to the mission. In support of one of our key values, Owlways be helping, they will coach and provide training either first-hand or through external providers to guarantee the PMO team members are equipped to deliver.

The right Project management process, procedure, tool and technique are vital to the success of our business and the PMO manager will be accountable for making sure we have the right ones in place.

The person

You are likely to have a multi-industry background with a technical or scientific bias and a good understanding of how businesses operate. Someone that understands what makes a great team and makes time to spend with individuals enabling them to grow.

You will have the ability rationally sell project management and all that it encompasses at every level of the business knowing that you are an expert in methodologies and core competencies.

The successful person will have the drive and energy that matches the rest of the team and will revel in the fast placed environment that exists to achieve our mission of saving lives.

Job Description

Owlstone is looking for a manager for its crucial Project Management Office (PMO). In this role, you will work with a dedicated team of project professionals to provide an effective and efficient PMO service to the organisation.

We need an energetic project professional with a breadth of experience managing a PMO in a scientific research and/or product development environment. You will be an innovative, decisive and delivery focused individual with the drive and enthusiasm to push forward relentlessly in a fast paced and challenging environment.

You’ll be involved in supporting a wide range of projects covering scientific research, new product development, clinical trials, customer led research studies and business systems which underpin everything we do. The PMO has a strong culture of training and personal development and you will be expected to continue to champion this ethos, growing the overall capability of the team and the wider organisation.

This is a key position and success in this role will be central to the continued growth and success of the company.

Key Tasks & Accountabilities

Working closely with senior management, you will take responsibility for the day-to-day operation and achievement of the three key PMO functions:

  • Project Delivery – ensuring we have the right PMO resources in the right place at the right time for each project and programme, managing the career ladder and competence framework, training and continuing professional development of all PMO staff, forecasting and recruiting, line management, organising development seminars, providing coaching and mentoring to PMO staff.
  • Centre of Excellence – ensuring that we have processes that are fit for purpose, management of templates and records, management of the project assurance function, knowledge management for risks and lessons learned, guidance on use of tools and techniques (e.g. MS Project, Cognidox, etc), project governance.
  • Portfolio Management – ensure we have consistent, efficient and effective reporting for projects, ensuring that the senior leaders in the business have the right information in the right format to make informed decisions on prioritisation of project work, contribute to the investment appraisal process for new work.

In addition to this, you will also be expected to play an active role in the routine activities of the PMO. This could include acting as project assurance for some projects, contributing to the programme of development seminars and deputising for more senior staff as required.


Person Specification

Core Competencies

The following competencies form the core strength of the PMO. As the PMO Manager, you will have an in-depth knowledge of, and be able to demonstrate solid experience in, applying these competences, primarily in complex situations, and be able to critically evaluate and adapt them as required. You will be able to develop new theories and/or methods if required and be able to effectively educate and train others. You will be recognised as an expert by your colleagues and will be frequently called on for advice.

  • Leadership & professionalism - the ability to empower and inspire others to deliver successful projects and to act in a morally, legally and socially appropriate manner.
  • Team management - the ability to select, motivate, develop and manage teams to achieve specified objectives and to resolve differences and conflicts between them.
  • Stakeholder management - the ability to identify and effectively engage with all stakeholders, taking account of their levels of influence and particular interests.
  • Planning - the ability to consolidate and document the fundamental components of a project and then prepare and maintain schedules for project activities and events.
  • Financial management - the ability to develop and agree budgets for projects, and to control forecast and actual costs demonstrating strong commercial awareness.
  • Quality management – the ability to ensure that the project outputs and processes through which they are delivered are meeting stakeholder requirements.
  • Requirements management – the ability to capture, assess and justify stakeholders’ wants and needs to arrive at an agreed schedule of requirements.
  • Risk & issue management – the ability to identify risks (threats and opportunities) and issues, assess them and plan and implement appropriate responses.
  • Benefits realisation - the ability to manage the integration of the outputs of the project into business-as-usual in order to realise the business benefits.
  • Governance - the ability to establish and maintain structures that define clear roles, responsibilities and accountabilities for governance and delivery of the project.

Essential Requirements

  • Experience - you will have demonstrable experience in a similar role managing a PMO or a group of project teams.
  • Knowledge – you will have an extensive knowledge of project management methodologies, tools and techniques, ideally holding more than one professional project management qualification (e.g. PRINCE2, APM PMQ, P3O, MSP, etc)
  • Education – you will be educated to degree level (or equivalent), preferably in a science or technical subject
  • Communication – you will have excellent written and verbal communication skills and be comfortable delivering effective presentations. You will have experience acting as a mentor or coach to more junior team members


About Owlstone Medical

Owlstone Medical ( is on a mission to save 100,000 lives and $1.5 billion in healthcare costs through the development and application of Breath Biopsy®. This involves collecting volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and respiratory droplets from breath, which can provide information about the metabolic activity and markers related to health and disease.

Breath sampling has substantial advantages for the early detection of disease and to enable precision medicine approaches to patient care. To realize these advantages, Owlstone Medical offers Research Products and Services for biomarker discovery and is developing tests in applications including cancer, liver disease, asthma, and environmental exposure. Our work includes partnerships with major organizations including AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, the Cleveland Clinic, and the NHS and our platform is in use at well over 100 clinical and academic sites worldwide.

Our leadership in-breath is underpinned by our world-class and varied team, including systems engineers, clinical scientists, analytical chemists, artificial intelligence specialists and clinical trials coordinators.

The Owlstone group also commercializes a range of highly innovative products based on its proprietary FAIMS chemical sensing technology in other markets including Scientific, Industrial Process Control, Military and Homeland Defense.

We offer a relaxed, friendly, flexible and international working environment with a strong and vibrant team-spirit. You will be rewarded with a competitive salary package that includes an Employee share options scheme and private medical insurance and your work will have a clear impact on people’s lives. If you want to experience the buzz of a thriving start-up company set to succeed on a global scale, Owlstone Medical could be the place for you.

We do not accept applications from agencies outside of our preferred supplier list. If you are concerned that your application has not been received by Owlstone Medical, please contact us using

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Owlstone team members are engineers, scientists and entrepreneurs focussed on changing non-invasive medical technology

We are scientists, doctors, engineers and entrepreneurs on a mission to save lives through early detection and precision medicine

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