Salary: £32,910 - £35,745
Working Pattern: Full-time (part-time may be considered)
Location: Chichester (Countywide travel may be required)
We're looking for permanent Senior Project Officers for Children, Young People and Learning to deliver a customer focused project management service, including provision of expertise and guidance on project related issues in support of the West Sussex County Council Children First strategy.
As a Senior Project Officer (SPO), you will provide expertise to projects and programmes, working with the senior leadership team to achieve project success and be accountable to the Business Manager to ensure coherent delivery of project management processes and services to the wider Children, Young People and Learning directorate. You will provide expert assistance with the delivery of medium sized or large projects/programmes and be responsible for the delivery of small and medium projects, in both instances working closely with clients to ensure efficient service provision.
To support the service as the Senior Project Officer, you will need to have experience and knowledge of statutory children's services and be required to work with senior operational managers; supporting them in the delivery of a range of statutory and high-risk services. You will be analytical with the ability to communicate with all levels of the organisation and external partners including the public. You will be personally resourceful and pro-active and able to work autonomously. In addition, you will be able to work well as part of a team and be customer focused. You will be agile and flexible and be able to respond quickly to changing priorities and short deadlines.
Experience and Skills
- Advanced analytical skills in order to interpret and manipulate varied and complex project information in relation to services/programmes required by the client. Excellent literacy and numeracy skills in order to understand very complex technical project information, contracts and to check statistical financial information and other documents.
- Ability to organise and plan to meet set targets e.g. for timely completion of projects.
- Excellent communication and interpersonal skills in order to interact effectively (e.g. guide, influence, persuade) with a range of high-level clients/stakeholders and create and maintain effective working relationship and provide coaching to clients/colleagues on process or documentation.
- Strong problem-solving skills with the ability to anticipate problems and resolve issues independently, planning solutions and making sound pragmatic decisions which will have a direct impact on the business/ service.
- Advanced IT skills in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, use of Internet and other web-based applications, for the integral use of word processing, analysis and research of data, creating electronic presentations.
- Effective people management skills including performance management skills and the ability to provide direction and support to individuals and teams.
Qualifications and/or experience:
- HNC/HND in an appropriate area or equivalent practical experience/range of knowledge.
- Project Management qualification (e.g. PRINCE 2) or equivalent practical experience.
- Diploma Management Studies (DMS) or equivalent (Desirable)
- Knowledge and understanding of local Government Children's Services and ideally of Ofsted inspections of Children's Services.
- Relevant knowledge of Change Management Framework & Project Management processes, procedures and policies associated with working within a demanding project management service.
- Experience of working in a dynamic and rapidly changing environment and of working within project management systems/practices and providing effective support.
- Experience of project planning and overseeing more than one project or project work stream concurrently.
- Experience supporting the management and delivery of successful change projects demonstrated by working as a competent member of a project team, ideally in a project support role or equivalent.
- Experience of contributing to the development of business cases to assist clients in achieving improvements in service and of business/systems analysis or business process improvement i.e. process flow mapping.
- Demonstrable experience of providing professional/specialist advice on governance and or developing and implementing projects.
- Experience of supervising staff, contributing to the development of an effective team to work together to meet objectives.
- Financial management experience with developed numeracy skills.
Rewards and Benefits
As an employer we recognise that it is our employees that are central to everything we do. We aim to create a supportive and dynamic working environment where employees can achieve their full potential, achieve a healthy work-life balance and are rewarded for the work they do. As well as a generous pension scheme, you'll be entitled to 26 days annual leave with the option to buy up to 3 additional days. For a full list of the benefits offered to you as a West Sussex County Council employee, please visit our website.
West Sussex County Council is an equal opportunities employer committed to promoting an environment that is inclusive and free from all forms of unlawful or unfair discrimination and values the diversity of its people. We actively welcome applications from people of all backgrounds and take every possible step to ensure that no individual will be disadvantaged.
For information regarding your eligibility to apply for this role under our Disability or Veteran's Guaranteed Interview Scheme, please visit our website.