Job Description: Operations Coordinator

Application below — closes March 10, 2019

City Bureau is seeking a FULL-TIME Operations Coordinator to maintain supportive, efficient, and transparent administrative systems for City Bureau’s programs.

You should consider applying if:

  • you often find yourself making a spreadsheets, diagrams, or pictures to diagnose or solve problems

  • you love the idea of building organizational infrastructure to support civic journalism in Chicago

  • you are not satisfied with the status quo in local media and/or nonprofits today and are ready to do something about it

City Bureau is dedicated to reinventing local journalism by disrupting and repairing broken structures, and we believe changing systems also requires creating new ones. This person will help us do that within our own organization, designing administrative systems uniquely suited to the future of community journalism.

This person will work with City Bureau’s Director of Operations to keep our books and analyze our budget decisions, maintain our compliance with laws and regulations, audit and improve our systems for managing materials and information across the organization, and manage our office environment. We also expect that this person will eventually take on additional responsibilities adjacent to operations—office management, media production, development and grant-writing, and marketing and communications are all possibilities.

Some specific responsibilities include:

  • Bookkeeping and recordkeeping

  • Invoicing

  • Mail intake

  • Donation management

  • Compliance tracking

  • Audit preparations

  • Operations development and back office design

  • Miscellaneous administrative tasks

  • Equipment share check out system

  • General office management

Our staff has the capacity and interest in teaching the required skills, and entry-level candidates are welcome to apply. Candidates with deep experience in these or adjacent areas are also encouraged to apply. Compensation and responsibilities may be adjusted based on experience (see the note below on our compensation policy).


Applicants must

  • have experience using digital tools to manage, automate, streamline and/or deepen administrative processes

  • be organized, precise, and detail-oriented

  • be a fast and clear communicator

  • enjoy challenges and learn quickly

  • have excellent time-management skills

We also expect applicants will have several but not all of the following:

  • A working knowledge of statistics and data analytics

  • Strong technical writing or grant-writing skills

  • Bookkeeping and financial analysis skills

  • Relationships, experience, and knowledge on Chicago’s South and West Sides

  • Experience in nonprofit administration

  • Familiarity with journalism and media fields


Hours for this position are Monday through Friday 9 to 5 with the majority of work conducted from our office in the Woodlawn neighborhood of Chicago. This position is full-time and is not exempt from overtime.

Compensation and benefits

City Bureau uses a universal tiered-compensation structure within which salary is non-negotiable. The expected salary level for this position is $41,250. For the right candidate who brings experience and is able to take on more responsibilities we are open to considering the position at the next tier of our compensation structure.

City Bureau offers health (75% of premium), dental (75%), vision (75%), and term life insurance (100%), stipends for work tools and professional development, 15 days of paid vacation, and scheduled annual salary increases currently set at 3.5%.

About City Bureau

Founded in October 2015, City Bureau is a nonprofit civic journalism lab based on Chicago’s South Side. City Bureau brings journalists and communities together in a collaborative spirit to produce equitable media coverage and encourage civic participation. Learn more at

Application process and timeline

Our selection process is designed to be fast and respectful of each candidate’s time. The first round is a simple form at the bottom of this page.

The second round involves a written case exercise and a second interview. All candidates offered an opportunity to submit a case exercise will be paid for their participation regardless of final selection.

While our timeline for the hiring process will depend on the volume of applications we receive, we expect to keep to the following schedule:

  • March 10: First-round application closes

  • Mid- to late-March: Selected candidates will be interviewed in person or via video chat. Second round candidates will be offered the opportunity to submit a case exercise.

  • Late-March to early April: Final interviews and candidate selection.

Contact information

For questions about this role contact City Bureau Director of Operations Harry Backlund at

Further Reading

Help City Bureau Grow with Integrity

Billionaires Can’t Build the News We Need

Disruptors or Repairers? How City Bureau Fits in the Local Media Landscape

The Public Newsroom