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Director of Development Services

Location:  City of Austin, TX Download:  City of Austin, TX - Director of Development Services Brochure

City of Austin
Director of Development Services

About Austin, Texas

This vibrant and dynamic city tops numerous lists for business, entertainment, and quality of life. One of the country’s most popular, high-profile and “green” cities, Austin was selected as the “Best City for the Next Decade” (Kiplinger), the “Top Creative Center” in the US (, #1 on the “On Numbers Economic Index” as the fastest growing economy, and #9 on Forbes list of “America’s Best Employers” making the City of Austin the highest-ranking employer in the government services sector.  Austin continues to lead the country with its vision of being the “Most livable city in the country,” emerging as a player on the international scene with such events as SXSW, Austin City Limits, Formula 1, and being home to companies such as Apple, Samsung, Dell, Seton and St. David’s Healthcare. From the home of state government and institutions of higher education to the “Live Music Capital of the World” and its growth as a film center, Austin has gained worldwide attention as a hub for education, business, health, and sustainability. From founding through the year 2000, Austin’s population roughly doubled every 20 years.

Austin City Government

The City of Austin is a progressive, dynamic, full-service municipal organization operating under the Council-Manager form of government. Austin’s mayor is elected from the city at large and ten council members are elected from single-member districts. Terms of the mayor and council members are four years and terms are staggered so that a general election is held every two years with half the council being elected at each election. Term limits for the mayor and council members provide for two consecutive four-year terms. The City Council is responsible for appointment of the City Manager who is the Chief Administrative and Executive Officer of the City, City Clerk, City Auditor, Municipal Court Judges, and the Municipal Court Clerk. 

The Mayor, Council, and City Manager of Austin are committed to their mission of delivering the highest quality services in the most cost-effective manner.

Strategic Outcomes and Indicators

The City Council adopted six Strategic Outcomes and Indicators in March of 2018 as part of its Strategic Direction 2023 to guide the City in improving quality of life and civic participation in the Austin Community over the next three to five years.  The Development Services Director reports through the Assistant City Manager for Economic Opportunity and Affordability.   The Development Services Director will be responsible for supporting cross-departmental issues and involving external stakeholders as it relates to the six Strategic Outcomes.

The Development Services Department

The Development Services Department (DSD) was created in 2015 through the reorganization of the Planning and Development Review Department. The DSD has 462 full-time positions and an operating budget of $60.2 million. 

DSD is organized by the following development-related services:

  • Development Assistance Center - Consulting Services
  • Land Use Review - Site Plan/Subdivision Review, Underground Storage Permits
  • Community Trees - Tree Preservation, Urban Forest Plan
  • Building Plan Review - Residential and Commercial Building Review, and Expedited Building Review
  • Service Center - Building and Trade Permits, Contractor Registration
  • Inspections - Building Inspections, Commercial Site/Subdivision Inspections, and Environmental Inspections

The Position

Under the general direction of the Assistant City Manager for Economic Opportunity and Affordability, the Director of Development Services directs and oversees the supervisory functions of the Development Services department.


Duties, Functions, and Responsibilities:

Essential duties and functions, pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act, may include the following. Other related duties may be assigned.

  • Establishes and maintains effective working relationships with coworkers, department heads, officials, customers, regulatory agencies and the general public.
  • Plans, organizes, directs and evaluates the performance of assigned staff; establish performance requirements and personal development targets; monitor performance and provide mentoring for performance improvement and development.
  • Provides leadership and work with department staff to develop and retain highly competent, customer service-oriented staff.
  • Acts as official departmental representative to other city departments, City Manager’s Office, elected officials, and outside agencies; explains, justifies, and defends department programs, policies, and activities; and negotiates and resolves sensitive, significant, and controversial issues.
  • Presents for the department and represents the department’s interest and position before local and state governmental officials, boards, commissions, associations, and community organizations.
  • Briefs and advises City management and the Mayor and Council regarding development services matters in person and through written reports.
  • Responds to and resolves complex and sensitive issues and complaints both internal and external.
  • Directs, develops, implements and oversees the development, implementation, and evaluation of programs and services that support the department’s purpose and forecast.
  • Creates and maintains the strategic vision and plan for the department and implements activities which align with the department mission and vision.
  • Develops a staffing structure that supports the efficient delivery of programs and services.
  • Develops and implements short and long-range strategies, objectives, and priorities.
  • Fosters and develops a culture of positive customer service in working relationships with key staff, division, and departmental employees, other governmental organizations, and with external services, such as consultants, residents, legal counsel, boards, and commissions, and City Council.
  • Builds and manages effective management teams.
  • Assists with analyzing fiscal impact of proposed policies and programs.
  • Ensures all activities are complete and in compliance with city/departmental policies and procedures, local, state, and federal regulations and laws governing activities.
  • Coordinates assigned activities with other city departments and outside agencies; provides highly responsible and complex administrative support to the City Manager’s Office.

Responsibilities - Supervisor and/or Leadership Exercised:

  • Responsible for the full range of supervisory activities including selection, training, evaluation, counseling, and recommendation for dismissal. 

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

Must possess required knowledge, skills, abilities, and experience and be able to explain and demonstrate, with or without reasonable accommodations, that the essential functions of the job can be performed.

  • Knowledge of administrative, budgetary and managerial policies and procedures applied to permitting/inspection services and customer service operations.
  • Knowledge of budget preparation and standard general and fiscal planning and administration policies and practices.
  • Knowledge of management and supervisory principles and techniques.
  • Knowledge of the principles and practices of public administration.
  • Skill in directing the activities of a complex and diverse organization.
  • Skill in oral and written communications.
  • Skill in handling multiple tasks and priorities.
  • Skill in data analysis and problem-solving.
  • Skill in using computers and related software applications.
  • Ability to interpret, recommend and propose revisions to state statutes and city ordinances.
  • Ability to consistently, effectively, and tactfully communicate with people at many levels.
  • Ability to communicate complex, technical issues in non-technical terms to the general public.
  • Ability to plan strategically.
  • Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships with City employees, the public, elected officials, and boards and commissions.

Education and Experience

Qualified candidates will have a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with major coursework in public or business administration, economic development, urban planning, engineering or in a field related to the job, plus seven (7) years’ experience in in the environmental field, public or business administration, five (5) years of which were in a managerial capacity. A Master’s degree may substitute for two (2) years of experience. 

Licenses and Certifications Required:

Valid Texas Class C Driver’s License 

Ideal Candidate

In addition to being ethical, well qualified, and experienced, the next Development Services Department Director needs to be a collaborative leader who is skilled at building relationships and teams, as this person will work across the City of Austin enterprise and with external stakeholders.  

The ideal candidate will have a history of customer service excellence and show appreciation for the multitude and diversity of communities, perspectives, and values that exist in Austin.  

The ideal candidate should be an innovative leader who implements bold strategies to resolve complex issues and leads and empowers employees through the various units and locations across the department. 


The City of Austin offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience and extensive benefits including a generous pension system. Relocation assistance will be available for a successful out-of-area candidate.

How to Apply

Interested applicants should forward a cover letter and resume to:
Reference: COADDS 

Affion Public
2120 Market Street, Suite 100
Camp Hill, PA 17011

**Deadline to receive resumes is  April 18, 2019** 


The City of Austin is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. 

Posted: 03/22/2022