Democratic Services Manager, Essex County Council

Essex County Council

Full-time, permanent
Up to £46,000 per annum

Interviews will be held Friday 4th January 2019
Reporting to the Head of Democracy and Transparency

We are seeking a highly motivated, proactive and experienced democratic services manager to join our vibrant team. This position sits within Democracy and Transparency and operates at the core of the political environment. The Democracy Service is responsible for the delivery of effective and high-quality Appeals and Committee Administration, member support, scrutiny, elections and induction and promotes community engagement and understanding of the democratic processes of the Council.

The successful applicant will have extensive democratic services experience, previous management responsibility and will have excellent interpersonal skills. The position we are currently advertising will have responsibility for delivery of committee and scrutiny functions. Using a high degree of tact and accuracy they will support the effective management of the democratic process across the council, ensuring that legislative standards and best practice are adhered to.

The successful applicant will be required to provide expert constitutional guidance and advice to elected members, senior officers and other stakeholders, therefore the ability to be diplomatic is crucial to the success of this role. Strong leadership and team building skills are also an essential part of the role.

Organisational Accountabilities:

* Operating as a professional expert, focused on providing support to all within the function These roles deliver their requirement through the use of professional (or equivalent) skills and experience.
* Informing operational planning and advising on performance review to support exceptional service delivery.
* Working collaboratively within the function and relevant services to support delivery of best possible outcomes for our customers.
* Maintain and nurture collaborative relationships in all day to day activity.
* Operate in new ways to improve levels of service quality. Using expertise to advise on complex issues that meet the needs of customers.
* Effective utilisation of digital technologies and innovation within the role.
* Factors equality and diversity into all advice provided and in daily activities.
* Factor in risk management as part of daily activities.
* Deliver exemplar customer interactions which support strong relationships and maintain a reputation for achieving outcomes and resolving issues.

Service/Functional Accountabilities:

* Responsible for the provision of expert advice and guidance to elected and panel members, schools, clerks, officers and others on statutory, constitutional and procedural matters generally, maintaining an up-to-date understanding of relevant legislation and regulations.
* Strong management skills with the ability to focus on results, leading a highly performing and motivated team from diverse backgrounds to achieve local objectives.
* Delivers an effective administration service to elected members, scrutiny and other committees, working collaboratively across Democratic Services to optimise resource levels and deliver a high quality service.
* Delivers a high quality process for school admission and exclusion appeals to the community and voluntary schools and those who buy into the service.
* Responsible for leading and coordinating project work requiring key stakeholder engagement and maximising democratic engagement across the County.
* Contributes to business planning (on a four year election cycle) and is responsible for the delivery of objectives, ensuring that performance is clearly defined in terms of benchmarked outcomes and short, medium and long term business, performance and quality targets.
* Maximise the use of digital opportunities to streamline systems and processes which enhance the role of Digital Councillor, digitalise school appeals and enabling self-serving.
* Responsible for maintaining Essex County Council’s Member Development Charter Plus status through the member induction process and ongoing member development.
* Develop strong working relationships with elected and panel members, key stakeholders, partners, officers and the communities of Essex to deliver positive outcomes.
* Specific individual and shared targets and objectives are defined annually within the performance management framework.

Knowledge, skills and experience

* Educated to degree level or equivalent by experience. Completion of the Association of Democratic Service Officers Certificate or Diploma is desirable.
* Evidence of continuing professional development and expert knowledge of the Democratic Services function.
* Experience of working within a Democratic Services environment, particularly with Committee, Scrutiny, Member Support and/or Statutory School Appeals.
* Excellent ICT skills and good working knowledge of Microsoft applications is essential. Knowledge of a Committee Management system is highly desirable.
* Experience of managing a team including leading, motivating, engaging and managing resources to provide high quality customer service.
* Excellent interpersonal skills, particularly oral and written communication skills, presentation of text and other materials to the highest of standards and attention to detail.
* Experience of working within a highly sensitive political environment with the ability to be tactful, assertive and diplomatic.
* Proven experience of working effectively with internal and external partners, the community, senior officers and elected members. Evidence of understanding and responding to differing viewpoints taking a cross organisational perspective.

As part of employment with Essex County Council (ECC) should your role require a DBS check you will be required to register with the DBS update service. The DBS update service ensures all registered DBS certificates are kept up to date and allows authorised parties to view the status of your certificate. This is an annual subscription and you will be responsible for ensuring this is maintained. For further information on the DBS update service please visit: https://www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service

Essex County Council is proud to offer an excellent benefits package to all its employees. More information can be found on https://www.workingforessex.com/benefits

Essex County Council is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults, and expects all employees and volunteers to share this commitment.

We seek the best talent from the widest pool of people as diversity is key to our success.

If you have any queries regarding this role, or require anything further, please contact the Essex Recruitment Team on 033 005 83330* or contact Joanna Boaler, joanna.boaler@essex.gov.uk
*Calls to this number are charged in the same way as calls to numbers starting 01 or 02, please check with your service provider

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