Principal Advisor Public Transport Strategy - Kaitohutohu Matua, Metlink

It’s an exciting time to be in public transport, with growing support for public transport to deliver a significant number of economic, social and environment benefits including addressing climate change. There are some challenging targets we need to achieve to ensure public transport meets the expectation of current and future generations. The Principal Advisor – Public Transport Strategy will be pivotal in shaping a high performing more sustainable public transport systems for the Wider Wellington Region

About Greater Wellington and Metlink:

There's a lot more to us than meets the eye. Here at Greater Wellington Regional Council, we're working on the big things that will impact everyone in our region. Ensuring we have uninterrupted access to drinking water, staying safe from the threat of flooding, protecting and enhancing the environment, improving the quality of our fresh water, ensuring we are all connected through our public transport network and planning ahead for the potential impact of climate change across our region. We're people who are genuinely passionate about the work we do, because we believe what we do counts.

Every day we have thousands of people travelling with Metlink (across rail, bus, harbour ferry and Total Mobility) and every one of those journeys matters to us. Our role is to plan, develop, promote and deliver public transport services and supporting infrastructure in the Wellington region. Our goal is to be more than just a public transport service, we want to be a symbol of pride for the Wellington region, an integral part of what makes living in our region great.

About the role:

The Principal Advisor – Public Transport Strategy is the focal point for developing Greater Wellington’s long term public transport strategy. This unique role will be a primary driver behind building a stronger more innovative public transport system. The role will not only champion industry innovations and best practice but also lead cross-functional teams to assess the application of opportunities into Metlink’s future design.

As Principal Advisor – Public Transport Strategy will own Metlink’s longer term strategic roadmap and work to integrate new innovative/change projects into Greater Wellington’s Long Term Plan. For the roadmap to be effective this will require significant engagement with a wide variety of internal and external stakeholders to align various strategic plans and policies.

While the role will include “blue sky” opportunity identification it will also manage/coordinate various assessment processes to create clear and compelling recommendations. These recommendations will be contextualised by a rich collection of insights collected across various local, national and international sources. The ability to both identify and stay on top of industry trends, innovations, emerging risks and opportunities will be invaluable in the shaping Metlink’s future strategy. Ultimately this role is responsible for driving ‘positive continuous evolution’ of Wellington Region’s Public Transport Offering. 

The Principal Advisor – Public Transport Strategy is considered part of the extended Metlink leadership team and will also come with a variety of internal and external project management responsibilities. To be successful you will need to form and manage various cross-functional teams of subject matter experts, external service providers and consultants.  Without direct authority, you must be comfortable with influencing and leading a variety of roles inside and outside of the organisation. You will also need to actively engage and maintain a number strategic relationships including with Councillors, Territorial Authorities, Central Government agencies and Public Transport Authorities. Internally, you will coach and support the wider Metlink Group to become more innovative, ambitious and integrated in the development of future plans and projects.

To be successful you will need to be a naturally curious ‘strategic thinker’ who can translate these ideas into clear plans that will result in substance positive change. You’ll like seeing the ‘big picture’ but also come with a sound ability to identify and assess complex opportunities and problems. Most importantly you must be able clearly present / articulate a clear vision of future to peers, senior management and politicians alike.

Skills and experience required:

  • An appropriate tertiary qualification

  • Significant experience within a strategy, planning or consultancy type role

  • Demonstrated thought leadership in innovation and / or driving change

  • Proven experience in providing high grade insights and analysis to senior management

  • A working knowledge of financial and/or economics assessment tools.

  • A background in successfully leading and managing people or project teams

  • Exceptional oral and written communication and presentation skills, including writing reports and business cases.

  • A demonstrated experience in building strategic relationships

  • Ability to manage work programmes in appropriate timeframes and budgets

  • Experience introducing new technologies and / or  global trends advantageous

  • Experience working in transport, infrastructure or urban design advantageous

How to apply:

Click on the “Apply” link to view the job description and to apply for the role with a cover letter and CV.

For further information, please contact Tim Shackleton

Applications close: Friday, 21 May 2021

Due to current border restrictions from the New Zealand Government we are only able to accept applications from candidates who are a New Zealand Citizen/Resident or who have already secured the right to work in New Zealand and hold a valid visa. For further information, please visit

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Permanent Full Time

Job no: DZFN147850

Location: Wellington City

Closing Date: Friday, 21 May 2021