Job profile for Strategic Business Support Manager (Housing and Communities)

Job Details

Job title: Strategic Business Support Manager (Housing and Communities)

Salary/Grade: SMG 2

Service: Housing and Community Service

Reports to: Head of Housing and Community

Manages/Supervises: Officers in the Housing & Communities Strategy, Policy, Research and Development Team and admin support officers.

Job purpose

  • To monitor housing, community, public health and leisure needs in the District.
  • To manage and oversee the development and implementation of a strategy to meet the District’s housing, community, public health and leisure needs.
  • To create and manage a programme of affordable housing development that meets housing needs.
  • To contribute to and support the overall work of the District Council and of the Housing and Community Service.
  • To manage the Housing, Communities or Leisure and events Teams in the absence of the Head of Housing & Community and the Housing Operations Manager, Communities Manager and Leisure Manager, as required.

Principal Accountabilities

Monitoring Housing & Community Needs

  • Maintain a system to continuously research housing and community needs in the District.
  • Plan the management, development and updating of the ‘Housing StatNav’.
  • Ensure that changes in Government and Council policies in Housing, Communities and Culture are taken into account and brief Managers, Directors and Cabinet Members about relevant changes.
  • Work closely with the Housing Assessment and Housing Options Teams, the Communities team and the Leisure Team to understand changes in patterns of demand and the impact of policy change.
  • Participate in cross-boundary and multi-agency forums to assist with building a picture of needs and ideas for approaches to addressing them.
  • Oversee the maintenance of accurate, reliable data and complete submissions to DLUCH and other government agencies as requested.

Strategy and Policy Development

  • Compile, publish and update the Council’s Housing Strategy and the Homelessness & Rough Sleeping Review and Strategy and contribute fully to other relevant strategies and guidance, e.g. Affordable Housing Supplementary Planning Guidance, Communities Strategy.
  • Make sure that the Council’s Housing Strategy is consistent with and supportive of the policies in the Local Plan and helping in the preparation of evidence base to the Local Plan.
  • Work with partner organisations to make sure that our Housing & Communities strategies support and complement the work of registered providers, statutory and voluntary agencies locally.

Affordable Housing Development

  • Manage the negotiation of affordable housing development across the District, including negotiations with developers seeking planning permission for new developments.
  • Make sure that we are able to provide robust data to support our negotiations.
  • Work with our Planners and with Registered Providers to create a programme of new development across the district.
  • Make sure that the quality of the homes is as good as possible, particularly in terms of house room sizes and accessibility standards.
  • Manage the Local Authority Social Housing Grant budget by working positively with social housing providers to identify how and where our investment will make a significant difference to our delivery of affordable housing.
  • Make sure that the programme delivers a mix of homes that best meet the long term needs of the District.
  • Maintain up-to-date monitoring records to enable the Council to publish relevant performance information.

Contribute to the overall work of the District Council and of the Housing and Community Service

  • Oversee the maintenance and presentation of the service’s performance data on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis.
  • Make sure that the service responds to Freedom of Information requests in a timely and accurate fashion.
  • Drafting of responses to MPs.
  • Draft and present reports when Cabinet decisions are required to make progress with the Council’s strategic aims.
  • Prepare and undertake briefings to our Director(s) and to the Cabinet Members for the service
  • Respond to queries from District and Parish Councillors and make sure we make resources available to help them respond to their constituents.
  • Be available to members of the public who would benefit from direct contact with a senior manager.
  • Ensure all performance indicators are adhered to and improved on wherever possible.

Research and policy function of the Housing and Communities service area

  • Oversee the research function, being responsible for the dissemination of information to cabinet members and senior management team through a system of horizon scanning, briefing papers and report writing.
  • Support the initiation of projects across the service.
  • Oversee small projects across the service area.
  • To provide an administrative support function to the Housing and Communities Service area.

Corporate Accountabilities

  • To take responsibility for maintaining own health and attendance.
  • To support, contribute and comply with quality and governance procedures as directed by management.
  • To apply and actively promote the principles of the Council’s Equal Opportunities Policy in all areas of employment and service delivery.
  • Any other associated duties detailed by Head of Service or their representative.
  • To advise Line manager if, at any time, the above duties and responsibilities cannot be performed.
  • Any other duties as required to support the business, including maintaining business continuity and during civil emergencies. All staff may on occasions be called upon to support the Council to deal with emergency situations affecting the community we serve. In the event of an emergency or a rehearsal for such an event, you may be required to attend at times and at locations outside of the normal hours and duties of the post and to adopt duties directed by the Chief Executive or their nominated representative for the duration of the emergency situation.
  • To apply and actively promote the principles of the Council’s Safeguarding Procedure in all areas of employment and service delivery.

Skills, Knowledge and Experience

(Tested at application and interview stage)

Experience and Qualifications

  • Experience of researching, developing and writing strategies, policies and reports. (Essential)
  • Relevant experience of working in the housing sector or in a related sector. (Essential)
  • Good level of education to degree level or similar and/or qualification from Chartered Institute of Housing or similar equivalent qualifications. (Desirable)
  • Leadership and managerial skills/experience. (Essential)
  • A proven track record in this area of work combined with an excellent working knowledge of the Housing Act 1996, and subsequent relevant legislation. (Desirable)
  • Certified Practitioner/Chartered  Membership of CIH or other relevant professional qualification. (Desirable)
  • Qualification or relevant experience in project management (Desirable)

Skills and Knowledge

  • Ability to undertake research and the analysis of projects, statistical data and proposed legislation in order to identify and plan the Housing Service’s strategic objectives. (Essential)
  • Creative thinker – ability to see the big picture and find creative solutions. (Essential)
  • Excellent written skills. (Essential)
  • Ability/experience of writing clear and concise letters on complex issues. (Essential)
  • Strong influencing and negotiation skills. (Essential)
  • A commitment to and a clear understanding of the issues related to equalities and diversity. (Essential)
  • Excellent organisational skills to enable delivery of targets and provide clear audit trails. (Essential)
  •  Excellent relationship management skills.(Essential)
  • Excellent IT skills including use of word, excel, and other databases to enable the recording of information and statistics. (Essential)
  • Well-developed communication skills – ability to work with a wide range of customers and organisations. (Essential)
  • Customer-focused with a non-judgemental attitude. (Essential)
  • Ability to remain calm under pressure. (Essential)
  • Knowledge of service inspection and assessment processes. (Desirable)


We test this at interview stage

Communicating Effectively

Demonstrate the effective use of the range of communication methods available: written, spoken, electronic, and use these methods in appropriate ways suitable to the context and situation:

  • present spoken communication in a polite, friendly and respectful manner seeking to ensure mutual understanding
  • listen well and seek clarification and understanding, avoiding jumping to conclusions or making assumptions
  • present information and ideas in a clear and understandable way which avoids jargon
  • seek to understand the communication needs of colleagues and customers, being mindful of equality issues and the diverse needs of the range of people we work with
  • choose the most appropriate method of communication for the situation, seeking to avoid using one fixed style or approach

Performing efficiently and effectively

Promote good performance, developing clear, structured and efficient ways of managing workload and delivering results. Staff should challenge themselves and others to perform well, and to adhere to the Council’s performance management systems:

  • ensure that all work carried out by you is in line with business and service plans and supports the overall aims and ambition of the Council
  • plan your workload effectively, reporting achievements and problems to appropriate managers and project leaders
  • see tasks and objectives through to completion
  • approach challenges with drive and enthusiasm
  • strive for continuous improvement in your work and manage your learning and development to enable you to perform to the best of your ability.

Using and managing resources efficiently and effectively

Demonstrate the effective and efficient use of the full range of resources used in and by the Council including time, finances, staffing, equipment, information, materials, buildings, etc:

  • take responsibility for managing your time, seeking efficient ways to carry out your work, maximising your output and minimising wastage
  • use and acquire materials effectively and efficiently minimising wastage, recycling where possible, and striving for cost effectiveness
  • seek out ways to improve the use of resources.

Engaging with the customer

Understand the needs and requirements of your customers, to provide excellent customer service, and to involve customers in the improvement of services:

  • provide a helpful and friendly service to customers both internally and externally
  • take responsibility for following up on enquiries and solving customer issues
  • make efforts to fully understand the customer’s needs and avoid assuming that “we know best”
  • ensure that you have a full understanding of the needs and requirements of the customer seek feedback from internal and external customers on the effectiveness and efficiency of the service you provide.

Working well together

Actively foster good working relationships with colleagues and customers in order to collectively achieve the Council’s direction and ambition:

  • co-operate and work well with colleagues at all levels of the organisation seeking collective responsibility for the achievement of goals
  • demonstrate consideration, and respect for other’s feelings and opinions and avoid judging and making assumptions
  • maintain positive working relationships with external contacts in order to maintain the reputation of the Council
  • seek to actively solve problems and avoid passing the issue on to others or leaving the problem unresolved
  • demonstrate self-awareness of your style of working and develop flexibility and adaptability in order to work well with others.

Managers/Leaders Competencies

Managing and Developing People

Effectively manage and develop staff in order to achieve the Council’s objectives, improve performance and job satisfaction, and to develop the workforce of the future

  • Use a structured approach to agree clear objectives and monitor progress in a positive way
  • Provide appropriate development inputs for all staff and evaluate outcomes of learning activity
  • Make a personal commitment and contribution to employee development e.g. coaching/mentoring
  • Take action to resolve performance issues speedily and effectively, and within policy guidelines
  • Develop self-awareness of own management style and seek to develop flexibility in order to be able to work effectively with a range of work styles
  • Create a culture of empowerment in which staff can excel, develop and take ownership of their work and responsibilities

Other conditions

  • This post doesn't require a DBS check 
  • This post is not politically restricted

Values and Behaviours

We have corporate values and behaviours that set the standard for the organisation and all our staff. These are integrated in all we do including recruitment, induction, performance review, apprenticeships and all our learning and development programmes.

  • P - Perform well and get things done
  • R - Respect and value customers and staff
  • I - Improve and learn
  • D - Deliver that bit extra
  • E - Efficient and effective

Following a number of workshops, which were attended by more than 100 members of staff from across all levels of the organisation, we have now developed a series of behaviours to support our PRIDE values.

Moving forward these will be implemented across the Council and will be used as part of performance reviews, induction procedures, the apprenticeship programme, and all training interventions.

P, Perform well and get things done

We will: We will not:
Take responsibility for our actions and be accountable Be negative or disruptive
Be positive, show enthusiasm and energy - it's infectious Be resistant to change 
Be flexible and adaptable to get things done  Put things off or ignore colleagues and customers 
Work well together and be committed to what we do Fail to manage our own performance 

R, Respect and value customers and staff

We will: We will not:
Be open and honest Be unhelpful or say 'It's not my job'
Listen and focus on customers' needs Say one thing and do another 
Be open-minded and treat everyone fairly  Disregard the views and opinions of others 

Support or tolerate a blame culture

I, Improve and learn

We will: We will not: 
Create opportunities for everyone to improve Cover up our mistakes 
Take ownership for our own development  Keep getting the same things wrong 
Share lessons learnt and help colleagues  Ignore customer feedback 
Welcome questions and challenges to help us do things better   

D, Deliver that bit extra

We will: We will not:
Focus on solutions, not problems Stick to methods that don't work or are outdated 
Be open to new ideas and aim high  Make promises we can't keep 
Have a 'can do' attitude  Work in isolation and only care about our own jobs 
Be proud of what we do  

E, Efficient and effective

We will: We will not:
Make the best use of the resources available to us Waste resources 
Communicate clearly with the right people at the right time Be unhelpful or rude 
Respond promptly to customers' requests  Be closed-minded and say 'I've always done it this way' 
Seek new ways of working to do our jobs more effectively Undermine change or improvements
Be open to new ideas, challenge the status quo and create novel solutions Fail to support the Council's move towards a more commercial culture
Recognise and act upon commercial or efficiency opportunities  Delay responses unnecessarily to colleagues or residents
Strive to support new initiatives and a more commercial culture