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Student Services Manager (firstpoint)

To manage, lead and develop a range of student services to ensure provision of an efficient and professional information, advice and referral service for all students and staff.

To manage, lead and develop a range of student services to ensure provision of an efficient and professional information, advice and referral service for all students and staff. The post holder will be joining the University at an exciting time of change and will be expected to contribute to the development of an outstanding experience for our students. The Manager will be expected to review and further enhance the service, including the introduction of an Electronic Services Desk and expanding services across campus.

The Student Services Manager (firstpoint) will take a strategic overview of the needs of students and staff, liaising with other teams in Student Services, colleagues across the University and within the higher education sector more widely, to keep up to date with developments, procedures and best practice. They will take responsibility for proposing, planning and implementing improvements to the firstpoint service, and will contribute to the strategic management of Student Services through membership of the Student Services Management Team.

On a day to day basis the Manager will ensure that staff have sufficient training, resources and motivation to provide a high quality service during the published opening hours, and will monitor and review the effectiveness of the service and opening hours throughout the academic year. They will be responsible for all aspects of staff management, and will also oversee the maintenance of the firstpoint area to ensure that it remains welcoming, professional, accessible and vibrant.

The Manager will be expected to be able to train and support Firstpoint Advisers and Assistants in undertaking their role, to assist with service delivery at particularly busy times, and to act as a referral point for queries or disputes.

The Student Services Manager (firstpoint) is required to be dynamic, innovative, assertive, pro-active, strategically minded, a problem-solver and pre-emptive in a busy service.

Closing date: Sunday 29 Jan 2017

Reference number: SS1608 - 3158

Job details

Job details

Salary
Band 7, £32,003 - £36,001 a year, with the opportunity to progress to £39,324 a year
Hours
Full time, 37 hours per week
Start
As soon as possible
Duration
Permanent
Responsible to
Head of Student Services
Responsible for
Firstpoint Advisers and Assistants
Interview date
Interviews will be held on Monday 13th February 2017

Background

Background

Student Services aims to support University of Worcester students to enable them to fulfil their potential through a range of services under the following headings: 

• Careers and Employability Service

• Chaplaincy

• Counselling and Mental Health Service

• Disability and Dyslexia Service

• Firstpoint 

• Money Advice Service

• Student Achievement Service

• Student Support and Wellbeing Service

• Unitots Nursery

Firstpoint is a student-focused service providing a contact point for students studying at the University of Worcester and its partner colleges. In addition to being the delivery point for Student Services, it provides information, advice and transactions for the University’s Accommodation, Finance and Student Records services. The customer service approach requires staff to provide timely, accurate information in a friendly and accessible way.

VALUES AND BEHAVIOURS

In the Strategic Plan for 2013-2018, the University sets out the values which underpin the standards expected of all members of the university community. These are: 

o Intellectual openness, honesty and love of learning

o Human equality and dignity

o Democracy and mutual respect

o Educational and social inclusion

o Environmental sustainability and social responsibility

o Ethical and professional behaviour

o Active engagement and partnership

 

Within Student Services these values lead to an expectation of the following professional behaviours:

• A commitment to delivering an excellent, inclusive and student-focused service

• A positive and proactive approach to problem solving and seeking to improve practice, including maximising the effective use of resources

• Embracing change and being receptive to new ideas

• Showing commitment to your own development, and supporting others to achieve their potential

• Working collaboratively

• Valuing, encouraging and supporting diversity to foster a spirit of mutual respect

• Managing your own workload effectively, and contributing positively to the wider team

• Maintaining an awareness of the University’s aims, and where your role fits in to the bigger picture

Main duties

Main duties

1. To lead the firstpoint student services team which is responsible for providing a professional, welcoming, innovative and efficient information, advice, support and referral service to all University of Worcester students.

2. To line manage staff within the team, including:

• Undertaking staff recruitment and selection

• Overseeing staff induction and probation

• Conducting review and development (appraisal) interviews to identify personal development needs

• Promoting and facilitating development opportunities

• Allocating and reviewing workloads

• Identifying and responding to changing work patterns

• Holding staff meetings as required to share information

• Responsibility for the health, safety and wellbeing of staff

• Managing performance and conducting disciplinary proceedings if necessary

3. To take responsibility for maintaining an adequate level of service throughout the peaks and troughs of the academic year, putting contingency plans in place to cover staff shortages or emergency situations and being prepared to take a hands-on approach in exceptional circumstances.

4. To manage the firstpoint budget allocation, liaising with the Student Services Accountant to monitor and reconcile income and expenditure, forecast outcomes and bid for revenue expenditure within the department.

5. To conduct a review of the student services delivered from firstpoint with a view to increasing the reach across campus and developing a strong online provision of services for students. This will include leading the implementation of an electronic service desk.

6. To oversee the provision of a cashiering service.

7. To provide the strategic direction of firstpoint in liaison with the Head of Student Services, with the aim of delivering continuous service improvement and efficiency.

8. To design, develop and implement procedures and processes to deliver strategic priorities, with reference to existing good practice within the University and sector, in line with the University’s financial and academic regulations, and in full consultation with other University services which are being represented by firstpoint.

9. To contribute to the planning and delivery of Open Days, pre-entry guidance, enrolment, Welcome Week, student induction and other events and activities. This will involve occasional working during evenings and at weekends, with appropriate notice.

10. To prepare reports and statistical data relating to the delivery and effectiveness of the service as required.

11. To attend, contribute, and report to university meetings, committees and working groups as necessary.

12. To support the development of quality assurance and enhancement activities within firstpoint and Student Services as a whole.

ADDITIONAL DUTIES:

13. To act as mentor to new colleagues in Student Services and elsewhere in the University, with appropriate training, in accordance with the Mentoring Scheme.

14. To carry out any other duties relevant to the service, and commensurate with the responsibility level of the role, when appropriate.

*Maintain personal and professional development to meet the changing demands of the job; participate in appropriate training activities and encourage and support staff in their development and training.

*Take steps to ensure and enhance personal health, safety and well being and that of other staff and students.

*Carry out these duties in a manner that promotes equality of opportunity and supports diversity and inclusion, and takes into account the University's commitment to environmentally sustainable ways of working.

Person specification

Person specification

Please provide evidence of how you meet each of the essential criteria.

Essential Criteria

1. Good standard of general education to at least first degree level, or equivalent professional development and experience.

2. Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate confidently and effectively, verbally, in writing and via electronic media, with a range of audiences. This includes a requirement for excellent spelling, grammar, punctuation and spoken English, and the ability to present and promote the service in a range of situations.

3. Excellent leadership skills, with the ability to inspire, motivate and support staff to meet individual and team goals and to deliver high quality, diverse services in a complex, pressurised, and changing environment.

4. Recent and relevant experience of successfully organising a varied and substantial workload, and flexibility to manage that workload through cyclical periods of considerable pressure.

5. Willingness and ability to keep up to date with developments in the higher education environment through professional networks, publications and other media, and to apply this knowledge to the strategic development of firstpoint with the aim of promoting, modelling and sustaining a process of continuous improvement.

6. Ability to maintain the highest standards of professionalism, dealing with confidential and sensitive issues with integrity, discretion and impartiality, in accordance with university guidelines and the Data Protection Act, and remaining calm in difficult situations.

7. Excellent IT skills, including familiarity with Microsoft Office (especially Word, Outlook, Excel and Powerpoint) and internet searches. Proven ability to assimilate bespoke IT systems and to make effective use of IT solutions to improve efficiency.

8. Creative ability to oversee the maintenance of the firstpoint public space as a vibrant, dynamic and professional showcase for the University’s services.

9. Ability to travel to undertake duties at any University of Worcester site, or to attend internal or external meetings or events.

Desirable Criteria

1. Experience of working in a higher education environment, particularly within student services or support.

2. Experience of managing a Customer Service Centre.

Applications from Non EEA Workers:

Prospective applicants are advised to ensure that they are eligible to work in the UK without restriction.

Prospective applicants in points-based system immigration routes should assess their circumstances against the published criteria, which are set out on the GOV.UK website at www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration.

Visit www.naric.org.uk/visasandnationality for more information on how you can use a qualification from outside the UK to meet the requirements of the immigration rules.

Unspent convictions, cautions and bind-overs

The University is strongly committed to the fair treatment of its staff and potential staff, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, responsibility for dependants, age, physical/mental disability or offending background.

In line with the University's policy on the Recruitment of People with a Criminal Record, shortlisted candidates are required to provide information of any unspent convictions, cautions and bind-overs. Applicants are advised to seek independent advice if there is any doubt about the status of a previous conviction, caution or bind-over. Disclosures will only be considered at the point when an offer of employment is made. The existence of a criminal record will not in itself prevent you from gaining employment.

This is a description of the job as it is presently constituted. This job description is intended to enable a flexible approach to be offered working across the University as required. It is subject to review and amendment in the light of changing needs of the University and to provide appropriate development opportunities. Members of staff are expected to participate fully in discussions about changing requirements and it is the University's aim to reach agreement to reasonable change. If agreement is not possible, it reserves the right to require changes to the job description after consultation with the individual concerned.

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