This is a role with absorbing breadth and depth, across all aspects of the Trust's operations and management.
The principal accountabilities are to:
Contribute to the successful strategic management and administration of the Trust and its academies and their day to day efficiency
Lead and oversee Trust-level functional areas of Finance, Estates, Risk Management, Health and Safety, Information Technology, HR, Legal, Marketing and Public Relations and other ancillary areas ensuring they support and enable the primary objectives of the Trust and its academies.
Work closely with the Trust Board, the Local Governance Committees (LGCs), the CEO, the Principals/Headteachers and other Senior Management to ensure that the Trust and its academies operate efficiently and effectively.
A less formal precis might be “to run our business so that resources flow to children and teachers, providing the highest quality learning environment”.
Either way, you’ll see that it’s a wide-ranging and multi-disciplinary role, requiring leadership across a number of professional areas. With an overall budget of around £23m and several hundred staff, the Trust is a sizable and complex organisation, and the successful candidate will need to show that they have the skill and ability to manage relationships in every area – from Trustees, to Principals, to department managers, to key suppliers. Interpersonal skills are a fundamental part of the job.
You’ll line manage colleagues across the four principal areas of accountability – finance, HR, ICT and Estates – and you will show sufficient credibility and management skill to secure continued high performance and commitment from experienced colleagues. But there will also be a significant outward-facing, ambassadorial role as well; one example would be in gaining the confidence and trust of schools who are considering joining the Trust.
There are inevitably potential pressure-points in the annual cycle, such as budgeting and forecasts, annual accounts, and statutory reporting, so you need to be able to show that your personal planning, organisation and task management can deliver these key episodes in a professional and timely manner. Out-of-hours attendance, including evening meetings will also be required, and you must be able to travel independently between sites.
As well as a generous salary package, the professional rewards are really satisfying. There’s a major building project about to begin at Hall Mead, and the task of drawing together diverse strands of activity across the Trust will deliver real early positive impact. The Trust is stable and growing, and you will be in at the beginning of a dynamic phase in our journey.
As much as anything, though, we believe that it’s our values, our people and our mission that are so compelling. A tight-knit team spirit is tangible across the Trust, and we have a shared sense of fulfilment from delivering a genuinely inclusive, local – but world-class – education. The satisfaction of watching our learners grow into impressive, generous and independent young people never wears off.