Do you want to shape and influence the future of fire safety?
This is an exciting opportunity to work for the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) in our busy Protection Policy and Reform Unit. NFCC is the professional voice of the UK fire and rescue service who support FRSs to provide national leadership and drive strategic change. We need a Senior Policy Manager to help as we work towards the introduction of the proposed new Building Safety Regulator (BSR), following government proposals laid out in the draft Building Safety Bill. This is a politically neutral role, and the successful person will ideally be a politically aware individual that can exercise sound judgement and display discretion.
On 14 June 2017 the devastating fire at Grenfell Tower led to the loss of 72 lives with many more injured. The fire was an unprecedented event and since that day NFCC have been working to ensure it should never happen again. In 2018 NFCC set up a Building Safety Programme Team (BSP Team) to lead the Fire and Rescue Services’ response to reforms proposed in Building A Safer Future, in response to the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety, lead by Dame Judith Hackitt. In late 2019 the Government invited the Chair of NFCC Roy Wilsher, to Chair a new Protection Board (PB). This year the Government have provided £20m in funding to support an uplift in FRSs Protection activity and capability, with part of the funding available for the work of the NFCC’s PB secretariat and BSP Team.
This is an important area of activity working with FRSs, Government partners and wider stakeholders, mobilising and developing new approaches to tackle building safety regulation.
Working alongside our existing team of technical fire safety experts and fire engineers, you will be responsible for supporting a high-profile programme of work to help deliver the proposed new Building Safety Regime, an uplift to the Protection capability within FRSs, and national level initiatives and service improvements to respond to recommendations from the Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry and HMICFRS.
This is a rewarding and demanding role. You will need to have excellent analytical, policy development, communications, and problem-solving skills, and to be passionate about the role of CFOs in fire service transformation and fire protection. Whilst you do not need to have operational fire experience, you do need to have a good understanding and appreciation of the fire policy and governance landscape.
You will be joining the NFCC at a critical time, with a fast-paced building safety reform agenda being delivered across government, including the response to the Grenfell Tower fire, and findings from HMICFRS reporting on FRSs. If this role is of interest, we would love to hear from you.
Knowledge, Skills and Experience
The post holder will need to use initiative and judgement to resolve problems encountered, which may be complex in nature.
The post requires a self-motivated individual who can plan, organise and be adaptive in a non-traditional office environment, and will be comfortable working across a range of platforms. You will be adept at providing support to senior decision makers, have excellent time management skills, attention to detail and the ability to prioritise competing demands.
You will also be able to gather and analyse information from a variety of sources, drawing out relevant points and communicating them succinctly. You will be confident building rapport with senior leaders. You may previously have worked in producing advice to Ministers, provided policy advice within the civil service, or helped to deliver in an area of significant policy reform. An understanding of building safety and construction market regulation is desirable.
Key skills and experience include:
- Organisation and attention to detail.
- Experience advising busy, senior decision makers.
- Excellent communication skills, both written and oral.
- Experience of working in a fast-moving environment agile, ideally with experience from a public sector background.
- Experience of leading on the production of policy advice, guidance, and consultations.
- Experience mentoring or managing other team members.
- Thorough, with the ability to establish and maintain procedures and systems.
- Excellent interpersonal skills, with the ability to deal with a wide range of stakeholders.
- Ability to work as part of a lean organisation, autonomously.
- Political awareness, with the ability to exercise discretion, judgment and confidentiality when dealing with elected members and officers at every level, and to demonstrate political neutrality at all times.
- Good digital presentation skills across Microsoft and web based platforms; adept in Powerpoint and visual presentation.
- Relevant work experience.
Opportunities may be offered to successful candidates either on a secondment basis, or via fixed term contracts subject to skills, experience, and knowledge. Roles are for an initial period of 12 months, with the possibility of extension, subject to future funding.
How to apply: please submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) setting out your relevant skills and experience, and what you feel you could bring to the team (no more than one – two sides of A4, this may be supported by a copy of your curriculum vitae if desired).
If you are applying for a secondment from another organisation such as the Civil Service, we recommend you speak to your manager before applying as to whether this is likely to be supported.