Head of Strategic Engagement

About the role

Working to the Executive Director of Standards, you will lead the development and implementation of Social Work England’s social work strategic engagement plan, leading the team of regional engagement leads.

Regional engagement leads are registered and practising social workers working in localities with a range of stakeholders, including employers, people with lived experience of social work, social workers, and education and training providers. They will raise awareness and ensure the consistent implementation of Social Work England’s standards, including sharing analysis of when individuals or providers fall short of standards, and driving forward improvement across the region.

There will be eight leads as follows:

  1. Eastern
  2. London
  3. Midlands
  4. North West
  5. South East
  6. South West
  7. Yorkshire & Humber
  8. North East

What will you do?

  • Lead the development of our regional strategy.
  • Lead and direct a team of regional engagement leads across England including development and delivery of an annual operational plan with performance measures and targets.
  • Be accountable for the effectiveness, consistency and cohesiveness of work across regional leads.
  • To build and maintain strategic relationships with employers and key external partners in order to clearly understand and meet their needs effectively.
  • Ensure engagement systematically evaluated and develop and implement impact and benefits measures.
  • Ensure regions are mapped and that regional engagement leads build and maintain strong regional relationships with key stakeholders.
  • Clearly articulate priorities across regions.
  • Ensure that:
    • The strategic bridge between the centre and regional engagement leads enables effective communication and efficient operation.
    • Regional engagement leads’ time is being spent according to the agreed priorities.
    • Any themed work requiring different combinations of regional engagement lead expertise is successfully organised.
    • Progress towards impact measures, risk reduction/mitigation and other targets are monitored and where necessary escalated.
  • Work with other directorates to distil learning and direct and guide regional engagement leads’ regional focus.
  • Contribute to the development of the corporate vision and strategy for co-production and engagement with people with lived experience of social work

What are we looking for?

  1. A proven track record of strong leadership, organisational development and management ideally of geographically dispersed
  2. Experience of strategic planning with an outcome focused
  3. Skills in communication and negotiation with the ability to be focused, responsive, effective and compelling, including:
    • highly developed oral, written and communication skills and the ability to liaise and respond appropriately, confidently and sensitively in relation to a wide range of Social Work England
    • experience in preparing and presenting reports that are clear, concise, accurate and appropriate for a diverse audience across a number of platforms including verbally and
  4. Previous experience of complex problem-solving at a senior level with the ability to anticipate and resolve issues
  5. The ability to lead and work confidently and independently on own initiative, innovatively and productively with commercial and sector
  6. Direct senior management level work experience in the social work sector or in a relevant sector
  7. Strong interpersonal skills to build effective relationships with colleagues, partners, stakeholders and other sector contacts, lead your team and liaise directly with the chair, board, directors and senior
  8. Previous experience and success in building and maintaining strategic
  9. The ability to lead the delivery and successful conclusion of complex programmes of work with set budgets, timescales and deadlines, whilst effectively managing pressure, with a diverse and demanding workload and
  10. A commitment to and track record of enabling the participation of diverse groups of people in decision-making
  11. Willingness and the capacity to travel, and the ability to work as part of a geographically diverse
  12. A proven role model for respectful, open and honest behaviour including a demonstrable commitment to equality and diversity in service

How to apply

To apply, please email the application form and equality monitoring form by 5pm on Monday 20 May 2019 to recruitment@socialworkengland.org.uk.

Selection process

We will assess you against the evidence you provide in your application form. Please make sure that you address the criteria in the ‘What are we looking for?’ section, and give examples of how you meet the requirements of the role. It will not be possible to give feedback at sift stage.


Interviews will take place in Sheffield on
Tuesday 28 May
Thursday 30 May
Friday 31 May
Monday 3 June

Interviews will seek to further understand your skills, knowledge, experience and motivation and test the key competencies of the role:

  1. Leading the way – demonstrates clear managing of department and
  2. Working as one team – encourages collaboration internally and
  3. Embracing change – leads change by communicating clearly and encourages
  4. Focusing on people, including those with lived experience of social work and registrants – puts people at the heart of social work and knowledgeably collaborates with them.
  5. Being a business – focused on delivering business objectives

If you are successful, we will undertake routine security checks.


If you have any queries about the role or the appointment process, please contact recruitment@socialworkengland.org.uk 

More details




£52,00052000 (increasing to £55,000 on successful completion of 6-month probation)


Sheffield UK

Job type


Working pattern

37 hours a week. This is two year secondment or fixed-term role.

Closing date

20/05/2019 5:00 pm

Annual leave

25 days a year leave rising each year to a maximum of 30 plus 8 bank holidays

More details