Research and Innovation, Senior Manager

U.S. Soccer Overview 

We are U.S. Soccer, and we are the future of sport in the United States. Our mission is to make soccer the preeminent sport in the United States. We embrace diversity, technology and global connections to drive the growth of our sport and serve our athletes and fans. We seek motivated, passionate, skilled people who can think, create and work on a team. 

U.S. Soccer is a growing company that looks for team members to grow with it. U.S. Soccer offers a comprehensive compensation package, casual work environment, an inclusive culture and an atmosphere for professional development.

The Federation’s core principles set organization-wide standards to identify and foster our culture and inform how we interact and hold each other accountable. These principles guide U.S. Soccer: We Win Together. We Aim High. We Champion Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. To be successful as a USSF employee, it is critical to demonstrate and live up to these principles every day and with every interaction with peers, stakeholders, and partners. 

The Federation’s core values are the individual attributes and characteristics that staff embody to uphold the organization’s principles and succeed. These values guide our employees: Integrity. Commitment. Teamwork. Respect.

Position Description 

Reporting directly to the High Performance Director, the Senior Manager of Research and Innovation (R&I) carries out key business activities within the Sporting Department. This person focuses on research initiatives, submits IRBs, oversees internships, creates research resources, is dedicated to studying and developing technological innovation to improve High Performance, health, and safety, and facilitates research around Sports Medicine and Soccer programs. In addition, the Senior Manager of R&I oversees this area of the Federation, ensuring that it meets above expectations and progress is made for the long term. 

Primary Responsibilities 

  • Develop a strategic plan with department objectives for the area(s) of responsibility annually  
  • Manage and research contacts at research centers, universities, stakeholders, organizations, and companies that deal with innovation in the U.S. and abroad, establishing various forms of collaboration
  • Develop and support research projects by asking within the High Performance Departments (Sports Science, Sports Medicine, and Sporting Analytics)
  • Answer and support research questions from “field High Performance employees” with 3rd party support (Universities, Ph.D. candidates, external specialists, etc.)
  • Develops research initiatives with our technology partners and cross-departments
  • Support our National Teams environment with Sports Science practices during camps
  • Provide at minimum annual data summaries of current federation platforms across Sports Performance and Sports Medicine as well as critical analysis as directed

Minimum Qualifications 

  • Master’s and/or Ph.D. degree in a soccer-specific area
  • Strong knowledge of soccer 
  • Capable of working in fast-paced and      demanding environments 
  • Exceptional time management skills and ability to prioritize workflow 
  • Must be able to connect “micro” details to the “macro” vision and mission 
  • Ability to deliver high-quality work and execute under pressure and deadlines 
  • Proficient experience with Microsoft Suite (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook), SPSS, R, Python, Tableau, and Power-BI
  • Excellent written and verbal communication combined with a professional demeanor with outstanding capacity and understanding to write scientific papers 
  • Able and willing to travel up to 25% of the year 
  • Able and willing to work non-traditional hours, including evenings and weekends, as needed 

Desired Qualifications 

  • Passion for soccer 
  • Master’s and/or Ph.D. degree in a soccer-specific area
  • Bilingual (English and Spanish) or other languages
  • Thorough institutional knowledge of U.S. Soccer’s mission, goals, technical plan, policies, practices, and procedures 
  • Previous experience with a club or national team 

Working at U.S. Soccer is a unique opportunity. Employees who work at U.S. Soccer have the following attributes: 

  • Live our Principles & Values
  • Adopt a company-centric approach—Serve the Athlete and the Fan
  • Embrace and see learning as a lifelong pursuit 
  • Possess a growth mindset—keeps an open mind and seeks new challenges 
  • Practice self-assessment and self-reflection
  • Open to criticism and does not make excuses
  • Possess a tireless work ethic
  • Wants to be part of a team that wins
  • Has the ability to be firm but fair 
  • Communicate in a direct, open and honest manner
  • Build relationships through genuine interpersonal skills  

COVID-19 Vaccination

  • U.S. Soccer has mandated the Covid-19 vaccine and is requiring all staff to be fully vaccinated at the start of employment