Outsourcing Manager

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Date: May 24, 2023

Location: Madrid, ES Mexico City, MX Warsaw (Warszawa), PL

Company: Springer Nature Group

Macmillan Education provides world class content in the most relevant, engaging and flexible formats to support students, teachers and institutions through a lifetime of learning. Macmillan Education produces content for English Language Teaching (ELT) and for Schools curricula around the world whilst Palgrave Higher Education develops and distributes textbooks, e-books and interactive e-learning resources primarily for University-level students.

Job title: Outsourcing Manager

Line Manager: Head of Delivery

Location: Madrid, Mexico, Warsaw – Hybrid working model


This is a dedicated role to lead the Outsourced Projects Team, supporting the end-to-end delivery of on time outsourced/packaged projects to the highest levels of quality and efficiency. You will work with the Head of Editorial Services and cross-functional teams to mitigate issues and remove obstacles. You will act as the escalation point for any issues concerning the packagers on your projects and provide timely mitigation and resolution.


Having developed a detailed understanding of our key suppliers, you will match projects to appropriate suppliers for discussion and approval, providing a clear pipeline for suppliers and ensuring adequate time for project planning.


You will line manage Senior Managing Editors for Outsourced Projects (SME OPs), supporting them as the liaison between packagers and internal teams to ensure that projects are set up appropriately and run smoothly, and that packagers are onboarded in a timely, consistent and comprehensive manner. You will provide direction and clarity regarding workflow, process and best practice to your team, internal teams and packagers in order to ensure roles and responsibilities are clear and can be carried out successfully across every project. You will be responsible for allocating SME OPs appropriately to projects and will oversee their training and development; and recruiting as required.


You will proactively seek continuous improvement and maintain comprehensive guidelines and documentation to support our outsourcing process. You will also help to maximise the outputs of our suppliers by maintaining all onboarding and training documentation and providing ongoing feedback, training and support in order to develop and maintain our supplier base.


Key tasks:

Project set up for fully outsourced projects (whether full courses, levels or groups of components), following best practice, workflows and documentation defined and created by the Delivery Optimisation team:

  • Work with internal project team to define and scope out requirements (specifically, what we will be needing the packager to do).
  • Ensure project teams are aware of process, R&R, and best practice for working with packagers, providing training, guidance and support as required.
  • Oversee preparation of the packager brief, providing support to teams on how to complete, reviewing for completeness, seeking feedback from relevant functions and eliminating any ambiguity before sending to packagers for proposals and quotes.
  • Collate proposals and quotes from packagers (fielding queries from packager and liaising with internal team as required). Circulate final proposals, gather team feedback, and feed into supplier shortlist selection (critiquing the proposals alongside the team). Set up and facilitate Q&A meeting(s) with shortlisted suppliers and internal stakeholders and support with making final supplier selection.
  • Critique and feedback on supplier’s suggested schedules and payment plan to ensure they align with project delivery requirements. Ensure they are realistic and achievable and raise any concerns in a timely manner.
  • Gather and provide agreed packager costs to Project Manager for IA approval.
  • Oversee finalisation of the packager’s brief. Ensure its complete, unambiguous and meets all project requirements. Facilitate its sign off with internal team. Support Commissioning Editor with preparing packager’s contract and PO as required.
  • Complete series set up in EdFlux and any systems/tools set up for packager post IA2.
  • Arrange and facilitate project kick off meetings: 1. Publishing, 2. Design and Media, 3. Schedule run through. Ensure that key questions and concerns are discussed and resolved prior to project commencing.
  • Support Project Manager with ‘project mechanics’ set up as required.
  • Ensure supplier is able to download any agreed reuse content and provide support as required.

For unplanned for/non-budgeted projects:

  • Work with Publishing Services management team on gathering costs for Publishing Services tasks in preparation for Investment Approval, assigning tasks to suppliers and agreeing rates
  • Collaborate with the Project Manager, and Head of Editorial Services to ensure projects are adequately resourced.


Project work:

For fully outsourced projects (whether full courses, levels or groups of components), following best practice, workflows and documentation defined and created by the Delivery Optimisation team:

  • Monitoring schedules to ensure that packagers are delivering tasks as tlined in granular schedule on time at agreed milestones. Troubleshoot issues.
  • Act as the escalation point for any problems and troubleshooting, for example with regard to quality, communication and timeliness.
  • Alongside other internal stakeholders, review proofs and digital releases at the relevant stages of circulations, ensuring that all materials are of the appropriate quality.
  • Be responsible for monitoring and tracking all agreed packager costs on the project. Escalate and discuss any issues with Project Manager in a timely manner.
  • Ensure the timely delivery and handover of print PDF files to Production, and check to confirm that all relevant open files are archived into EdFlux in a timely manner by the packager.
  • Participate in post-publication evaluation meetings to inform future packaged project processes.
  • Support colleagues in the wider business, ensuring that any course materials and content are supplied as required and in a timely fashion.

For unplanned for/non-budgeted projects:

  • Take project lead on set-up and maintenance of detailed project schedules, supporting the wider cross-functional project teams in assessing dates, raising risks and issues, suggesting solutions.
  • Work with Managing Editors and the wider project team to ensure that schedules and budgets are realistic and achievable, and that all materials are of the appropriate quality. Alert Head of Editorial Services and Project Manager to any issues that arise, as appropriate.
  • Allocate components and/or tasks for the Managing Editors on their projects, monitor their workload and, in collaboration with their line managers, suggest solutions for periods of increased workload.
  • Support the cross-functional project teams by regularly informing them about their upcoming or delayed tasks, escalating any issues to the Project Manager.
  • Review proofs and digital releases at the relevant stages of circulations, ensuring that all materials are of the appropriate quality. Alert line manager to any issues that arise, when appropriate.
  • Support colleagues in the wider business, ensuring that any course materials and content are supplied as required and in a timely fashion.
  • Ensure best practice is created and sustained across projects and workflows, acting as an advocate within their team for those best practices.


Supplier management:

  • Supplier engagement, training and briefing. Ensure packagers we work with are trained and fluent in Macmillan Education processes and terminology and address any gaps as required.
  • Provide timely and direct feedback to suppliers and escalate issues you are unable to resolve as soon as possible to the Publishing Services management team.
  • Critique packager quotes, drawing on own publishing and editorial experience to evaluate and negotiate where possible.
  • Engage/contract packagers as required following Macmillan Education processes and procedures.
  • On unplanned for/non-budgeted projects, work with the Managing Editors to oversee the work of suppliers, monitoring costs and the quality of work and giving feedback to the Publishing Services management team as required.


Process improvements:

  • Identify and feed back to Delivery Optimisation Manager and line manager where process improvements regarding working with packagers could be made. Make amendments to document as directed and implement as required. Internal systems and processes.
  • Share knowledge and experience with the wider Publishing Services team via team meetings. ● Contribute to the development strategy for company systems and products from a Publishing Services perspective on an on-going basis.
  • Look for ways to improve all workflows, project development and delivery; implement continuous improvement across operational areas to improve standards.
  • Identify ways to improve communication to maintain operational efficiency.


Market awareness and training:

  • Understand Macmillan Education’s publishing strategy and the company’s business goals.
  • Keep up to date on ELT and general publishing issues, particularly ELT/EFL in an international context.
  • To work with the Publishing Services management team on developing/delivering training and support as required.
  • Complete additional tasks as defined and agreed with the Head of Editorial Services


Qualifications and Experience:

  • Educated to degree level or equivalent combination of education and experience
  • A recognised ELT/EFL qualification and/or teaching experience would be an advantage


  • Knowledge of ELT and/or educational publishing processes and best practices for both print and digital products
  • Competent with widely-used office applications
  • Commercial and financial awareness
  • Flexible approach and the ability to adapt to changing environments
  • Ability to manage own workload and to set and manage team priorities
  • Self-starter, able to identify and work to own standards and achievement levels
  • A commitment to lifelong learning evidenced by a willingness to continually develop skills and knowledge
  • Ability to deal with and resolve ambiguity
  • Excellent written and oral communication
  • Strong organisational and editorial skills
  • Eye for detail and a commitment to accuracy
  • Able to work independently as well as part of a team
  • (Madrid team only) Knowledge of Spanish desirable, but not essential


  • Editorial content delivery experience within Publishing (ELT or Curriculum Education preferred)
  • Experience working in a high-quality content delivery environment
  • Experience delivering large-scale digital and print editorial projects across multiple components and instructional levels
  • Experience of supplier/freelancer management
  • Experience working with packagers on end to end projects is considered an advantage
  • Experience of using title record systems and project planning systems
  • Good understanding of pre-press and production procedures for both print and digital publications
  • Experience of working without direct daily supervision
  • Experience of training others and developing training material


At Springer Nature, we value the diversity of our teams and work to build an inclusive culture, where people are treated fairly and can bring their differences to work and thrive. We empower our colleagues and value their diverse perspectives as we strive to attract, nurture and develop the very best talent.


Springer Nature was awarded Diversity Team of the Year at the 2022 British Diversity Awards. Find out more about our DEI work here.


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