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Date Added: Fri 04/06/2021

Operations Specialist

Chicago, IL, US
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Job Type: Permanent, FullTime

Job Description


Kokua's mission is to empower students by matching schools with passionate guest educators who maximize substitute teaching time. By the end of high school, teacher absences result in an average of 1+ years of lost learning time, particularly in underserved communities. We solve this problem by placing dedicated substitutes (or Guest Teachers) into classrooms across the United States. We believe that proximity is power, and that one role model can change a student's life forever. We are a driven team looking to make a lasting impact for future generations. As the world adjusts to new ways of life, inspiring role models are as important as ever, and we're looking for a new team member to drive this mission forward. 

Kokua began in Chicago in 2011 and has since grown across the country. We were recognized by Forbes in 2016 as an up-and-coming organization making an impact in the field of education. We have exciting growth plans ahead, and this is where you come in. 


Operations Specialists place the right teachers in the right classrooms. You work with school leaders to provide teachers who fit in well to their school culture. You thrive in a fast-paced environment, and operate with grace and tact to successfully fill all of our daily assignments. You are personable and develop relationships over the phone quickly, setting firm expectations with our teachers while maintaining strong rapport. Our school leaders and our teachers can depend on you to follow through. You are tech-savvy with the ability to navigate multiple applications at once. There are two different shifts for the Operations Team, early birds take the 6am - 2pm shift, while night owls prefer the 12pm - 8pm shift. As part of this application, you'll indicate which you prefer!


Join a talented team dedicated to excellence, who are committed to empowering and increasing the well-being of youth. You will have a direct impact on the lives of students and the education sector, and receive a competitive base salary with generous time-off benefits. 


1. Fill 100% of Classrooms in Need 

You are directly responsible for placing the right teachers in the right classrooms and ensuring 100% of classrooms and students have a strong teacher for the day. You will utilize an absence management system to monitor assignments and fill same day and advanced requests. You will use creativity, innovation, and people management skills to maximize Guest Teacher turnout. 

2. Be an Organizational Master 

No two days will look the same as an Operations Specialist. Each day your to-do-list is made up of new projects, weekly tasks, and ever-changing priorities based on school needs. You should be able to effectively prioritize target outcomes for each day and week and pivot quickly to adapt as needed. Attention to detail is key, as you will be the face of Kokua to our schools and Guest Teachers and responsible for critical data input. 

3. Build Strong Relationships with Schools and Guest Teachers 

You will be the main liaison between schools, Guest Teachers, and Kokua. Following Kokua's customer service standards, you will communicate professionally and warmly with teachers and schools, while keeping calm under pressure. You will build relationships with Guest Teachers to promote tenure and assignment fulfillment, as well as provide classroom support and assistance using your educational background and knowledge. You will engage with school partners to ensure satisfaction and retention and provide top quality service. 

4. Utilize Data to Drive Innovation 

You feel comfortable using data to think strategically about how daily tasks and planning connect to high fill rates and Guest Teacher utilization. You are proficient with Excel and Google Sheets, and gifted in analyzing data to investigate and improve processes and performance. You do not settle for the status quo and when faced with a challenge, you think creatively to find a better way. 

5. Ensure Alignment Across Teams and Functions 

You are directly responsible for organizational success by working closely with our Regional and Talent Teams to ensure we are matching the right talent to the right classrooms. You are a team player -- professional, solutions-oriented, and follow through on deadlines. You bring a positive energy to the team and inspire those around you through your work and dedication. 


  • Kind, resilient and dynamic go-getter with alignment to Kokua's core values of Mastery, Execution, Community, Empathy, Grit, and Honor 
  • 1-2 Years experience teaching or otherwise working closely with students 
  • Exceptional written/verbal communication and people skills 
  • Strong time-management and prioritization skills 一 including the ability to track details and deadlines of multiple work streams 
  • Self-motivated with a demonstrated ability to independently accomplish goals

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