Senior Portfolio Manager, UAE National

Etihad Airways

Abu Dhabi, UAE

Ref: KP902-242

Job description / Role

Employment: Full Time


The purpose of the Senior Portfolio Manager is to ensure the delivery of value to the business through technology initiatives that enable business benefits such as revenue growth, cost optimisation and improved customer experience. Time, budget and quality are key performance indicators of delivery. The Senior Portfolio Manager will be responsible for the flow of value from concept to delivery and will own the benefit realisation of all initiatives delivered by the value stream. As the organisation transitions to an agile delivery methodology this role will be key to driving the new ways of working including an agile mindset, leveraging Lean Portfolio Management principles. During and potentially post the transition to agile, several projects will continue be delivered using a waterfall methodology. The value stream lead will maintain a hybrid portfolio that is delivering in both agile and waterfall and will be responsible for deciding the most suitable delivery methodology to achieve the desired business outcomes. This role will chair the monthly Value Stream Board, a cross functional governance team of business and Digital Technology and Innovation representation, which will have accountability for allocating funds to initiatives and approving and prioritising Lean and traditional and business cases. This role will work with key stakeholders from the business and Digital Technology and Innovation to allocate resources to autonomous teams to deliver the technology initiatives. Their purpose is to optimise capacity ensuring maximum throughput of work within the constraints of the budget.


Strategy & Planning
- Take a leadership role in shaping the product strategy with the relevant business stakeholders.
- Facilitate the process of allocating funds to value stream initiatives, basis their priority, ensuring any decisions made are aligned with the organisation's objectives and the Digital Technology and Innovation strategy
- Own the benefits realisation of all initiatives delivered within the value stream, managing and optimizing the flow of value through fixed autonomous teams and project teams
- Own the definition of Lean business cases for agile initiatives and traditional business cases for waterfall projects
- Overall accountability for dependencies within and between value streams and ensure value stream level dependency logs are maintained and proactively management

Management and Operations
- Lead teams of Release Train Engineers, Scrum Masters, Project Managers and Business Analysts providing line management and performance management of the teams
- Define the career path for Release Train Engineers, Scrum Masters, Project Managers and Business Analysts, overseeing the learning and development plans for these resources
- Lead and motivate high performing cross functional delivery teams that will consist of resources from other areas of the Digital Technology and Innovation function e.g. DevOps
- Champion agile and modern waterfall techniques, be a seen as a role model in these disciplines, leading by example
- Create an environment that enables autonomous teams by fostering a culture of open and honest communication, a shared vision, retrospection and recognition
- Own the resourcing of projects and scrum teams with the support of the Release Train Engineer and the resource management and capacity lead. Ensure the appropriate sizing of the team and drive recruitment decisions

Initiative Delivery
- Responsible for the delivery of value to the business and the realisation of business benefits. The value stream lead will make recommendations to the value stream board on priorities where they see the opportunity to deliver greater value or where they see initiatives are not delivering the expected value
- Responsible for the on time and on budget delivery of initiatives, within agreed scope and quality measures
- Responsible for deciding the appropriate delivery model (agile or waterfall) best suited to deliver an initiative
- Overall responsible for the coordination and dependency management across the value stream to ensure a set of integrated solutions are delivered
- Work with the Lean Agile Centre of Excellence to stand up Agile Release Trains. This includes supporting the facilitation of Agile Release Train (ART) events where required and overseeing the management of the ART/value stream Kanban board


Education & Experience

- 7+ years of Program / Portfolio Management experience in delivering complex projects and solutions is mandatory
- 3+ years airline or related experience is mandatory
- Bachelor's degree in Computer Science, Information Systems, Business Administration or equivalent is mandatory. Master's degree would be a strong advantage
- Strong knowledge of project, program and portfolio management practices, following both agile and waterfall methodologies as well as a good understanding of product management principles is essential
- 3+ years of experience following Agile at scale is beneficial, i.e. agile applied at a portfolio, value stream or program level. Experience in executing PI planning events and coordinating multiple Agile Release Trains (ART) is beneficial
- Advanced knowledge of processes and technologies related to plan to product and acquire to pay in the aviation sector e.g. PSS, Revenue Management, Global Distribution Services, Loyalty
- Advanced knowledge of airline regulations as well as EU compliance, with a strong focus on GDPR and Data Privacy
- Must possess project management certifications in both waterfall (Prince 2, PMP or equivalent) and Agile (Scrum, SAFe or equivalent)
- Should have experience in seeking the alignment of business and IT, driving common approaches and delivering sustainable, re-usable solutions using both agile and waterfall. Demonstrated ability to drive change and challenge the status quo is beneficial
- Passion for creating new products and delivering technology initiatives that drive significant value for customers and the organisation is essential
- Proven leader with outstanding interpersonal, communication, and effective relationship building skills at all levels within an organisation. Must have experience of engaging at an executive level working with both business and IT executives to deliver value
- Strong written and oral communication skills including the ability to interact directly with business representatives that do not necessarily have an IT background, to explain complex technical solution and problems in a way that can be easily understood
- Must have strong experience managing cross functional teams including third-party service providers
- Must have experience of leading high performing teams and motivating team members to maximise their potential

About Etihad Airways

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, was formed in 2003 and quickly went on to become one of the world's leading airlines. From its home in Abu Dhabi, Etihad flies to passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and North America. Together with Etihad's codeshare partners, Etihad's network offers access to hundreds of international destinations. In recent years, Etihad has received numerous awards for its superior service and products, cargo offering, loyalty programme and more. Etihad is recognised as one of the world's leading airlines in response to COVID-19 and was the first airline in the world to fully vaccinate its crew on board.

Etihad sees tackling the climate crisis as the most important issue of our time, and through strategic partnerships with major global aviation brands and OEMs, Etihad is relentless in its pursuit of industry decarbonisation.

To learn more, visit

COVID-19 UPDATE: The health and safety of our communities-including our employees and our candidates remains our top priority. From a recruiting perspective we are continuing to identify people for roles with Etihad in anticipation we will be able to hire, however the process may take longer because we are using more virtual recruiting techniques, and start dates may be delayed because of guidance from the governments in the countries we operate in. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility, Stay safe and healthy.

About the Company

Etihad Airways is the National Airline of the United Arab Emirates. The airline was set up by a Royal Decree in July 2003, with Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE, as its hub. Etihad started commercial operations in November 2003.

With Etihad, everyone who flies with us is welcomed as our guest.

This simple credo illuminates everything we do, from big things like making sure that our fleet is one of the most advanced in the sky, to small touches like letting you choose the films you watch.

Were proud to be the National Airline of the United Arab Emirates. At the crossroads between Europe and Asia, our home reflects our commitment to bringing the world closer together - as does our highly cosmopolitan staff.

Get personalised updates on latest vacancies
Job Alerts by Email
  • Personalised updates on latest career opportunities
  • Insights on hiring and employment activity in your industry
  • Typically sent twice a month