As ESFA’s Accounting Officer, be personally accountable to Parliament for safeguarding public funds and ensuring value for money for the taxpayer. As Accounting Officer, the CEO supports the Permanent Secretary at the Public Accounts Committee and engages directly with the National Audit Office.
Sustain and develop a high performing corporate Executive team, managing three Directors (who report to the CEO).
Be the lead executive member of ESFA’s Management Board and ESFA’s Audit and Risk Committee, supporting them to deliver their critical role in overseeing the ESFA’s work.
Form strong working relationships with ministers, ESFA’s Non-Executive Directors and DfE’s leadership team. The ESFA will work with and underpin many of the Departmental Groups. The sponsor team will be based in Operations and Infrastructure Group.
Lead the establishment of the new agency following the recent review of the ESFA and the Future DfE reorganisation of the Department, developing a commitment to a renewed vision for the ESFA, and harnessing the strong pride that ESFA staff exhibit in their work.
Maintain collaborative working between ESFA and the DfE on shared interests, such as the financial health and sustainability of Multi Academy Trusts and Further Education Colleges.
Put effective digital delivery at the heart of everything the ESFA does, ensuring delivery systems are lean, effective and customer-focused, securing best value for our investment in education and skills.
Make a strong contribution corporately within the Department for Education and within the wider DfE ALB community.
This will include building credible partnerships with the Education Secretary, Permanent Secretary, Ministers and the wider DfE and ESFA leadership teams, as well as senior stakeholders across government. Your influence will extend not only across the breadth of the agency and the department, but across government and the wider education, children’s services and skills landscape.
As the Chief Executive Officer of the ESFA, and ESFA’s Accounting Officer, you will be responsible for ensuring delivery of the agency’s key responsibilities for effective funding for education and skills.
You will deliver inspirational leadership of c.650 people in the ESFA, which has been one of the highest performing units within the annual Civil Service People Survey consistently.
You will act as Accounting Officer for the ALB, and will therefore be personally accountable to Parliament for the management and delivery of allocated funds. You will be supported in this through ESFA’s dedicated Management Board and Audit and Risk Committee (ARC).
This is a new and vital role in the organisation. You will have the opportunity to shape the role at a challenging and pivotal time for the ESFA and the sectors that it serves.
About You: Essential Criteria
As a member of the DfE, you will be entitled to join the highly competitive Civil Service Pension Scheme, which many experts agree is one of the most generous in the UK.
You will have 25 days leave, increasing by 1 day every year to a maximum of 30 days after five years’ service. In addition, all staff receive the Queen’s Birthday privilege holiday and 8 days’ bank and public holidays.
We offer flexible working arrangements, such as job sharing, term-time working, flexi-time and compressed hours.
As an organisation, which exists to support education and lifelong learning, we offer our staff excellent professional development opportunities.
See our vetting charter. People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.
2. Applications will be accepted until 23:55 on Monday 21st March 2022. After providing some personal information, you will be invited to complete a Personal Statement of no more than 1000 words. Within this, please detail ‘why we should consider you for this role’ (up to 300 words) and ‘why you have chosen to apply to join the DfE/ESFA’ (up to 300 words) alongside any further information you would like to provide linked to the essential criteria.
A CV section will also require completion. Your Personal Statement and CV will be considered by the selection panel against the Essential Criteria (listed in this advert and on page 8 of the attached candidate pack).
3. Shortlisted candidates will:
I. Take part in a Staff Engagement Panel (which typically takes up to 1 hour to complete), to be held week commencing 4 April.
II. Undertake an Individual Leadership Assessment with an Occupational Psychologist, to be held week commencing 4 April.
4. Following the above assessments, the panel will shortlist candidates for interview. Formal panel interview on 28th April 2022. You will be asked to prepare a presentation for the interview (further information will be shared with shortlisted candidates) and you will be asked questions to further assess your Experience and Strengths using the Civil Service Strengths Dictionary.
5. Candidates invited to interview will be expected to meet the Secretary of State for Education for an informal conversation.
6. Employment references may be required as part of the recruitment process. Your permission will be obtained ahead of any references being requested.
Should you encounter any issues with your online application please get in touch with us via: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that at interview stage we may ask if you have any conflicts of interest to declare.
Please be aware that this role can only be worked in the UK from the location options provided and not from overseas.
The government is committed to supporting apprenticeships, enabling people to learn and progress in a role whilst earning. We want to monitor the number of people who have completed apprenticeships who are now applying to progress further in their career and are asking this question to all candidates, on all vacancies. You will be asked a question as part of the application process about any previous apprenticeships you have completed. Your response to this question will not affect your application and it is not a requirement of the role to have completed a previous apprenticeship.
For this role the department would not consider sponsoring a Certificate of Sponsorship/visa. Please note we are unable to offer advice on any Visa and Immigration cases.
If successful and transferring from another Government Department a criminal record check maybe carried out.
In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service on your behalf. However, we recognise in exceptional circumstance some candidates will want to send their completed forms direct. If you will be doing this, please advise Department of Education of your intention by emailing Pre-Employment.Checks.DFE@education.gov.uk stating the job reference number in the subject heading.
Department for Education do not cover the cost of travel to your interview/assessment unless otherwise stated.
A reserve list may be held for a period of 6 months from which further appointments can be made.
Candidates will be posted in merit order based upon location preference. Where more than one location is advertised you will be asked to state your preferred location.
New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.
Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment.
Terms and conditions of candidates transferring from ALBs and NDPBs
Bodies that are not accredited by the Civil Service Commission and are not able to advertise at Across Government on Civil Service jobs will be treated as external new starters and will come into DfE on modernised terms and conditions with a salary at the band minimum.
Bodies that are accredited by the Civil Service Commission but do not have civil service status will be offered modernised terms and will not have continuous service recognised for leave or sickness benefits. Salaries should be offered at band minimum, but there is some flexibility where this would cause a detriment to the individual.
Bodies that are accredited by the Civil Service Commission and do have Civil Service status will be treated as OGD transfers. Staff appointed on lateral transfer will move on to pre-modernised DfE terms (unless they were on modernised terms in their previous organisation). Staff appointed on promotion will move on to modernised DfE terms. Staff will transfer over on their existing salary (on lateral transfer) and any pay above the DfE pay band maximum will be paid as a mark time allowance. Staff moving on promotion will have their salaries calculated using the principles set out in the attached OGD transfer supplementary information.
If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes. If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:
Any move to Department for Education (DfE) will mean you will no longer be able to carry on claiming childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax-Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk/
Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.
This job is broadly open to the following groups:
We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s recruitment principles. The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
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