Non-job of the week

September 27, 2012 12:28 PM

In our 2010 report on Unnecessary Jobs, we discovered Croydon Borough Council employed five equality and diversity officers. Neighbouring Bromley didn't employ any. Croydon either wants a replacement or is about to swell the ranks as it advertises for another Equality Officer paying £37,179 - £38,961 per annum. Here's part of what the council has to say:
The Council is seeking to recruit an Equality Officer. This post will report to the Equality Manager and has a key role within the organisation, supporting an ambitious and far-reaching equality agenda. A main purpose of the role will be to support the improvement in performance and practice throughout the organisation by ensuring equality is embedded in all of the council’s activities.

Many councils like Croydon have created mini-departments to comply with the Equality Act 2010. The fact that others have not proves there isn't any evidence that hiring specific staff is necessary.

The London Borough of Sutton was mentioned by me just three weeks ago. Readers may remember Sutton Council was looking for a Community Involvement and Innovation Officer. This week the council is looking for two Locality Lead Officers, paying £38,961 - £41,610 per annum each. So what exactly will they be doing to earn their salary? See if you can work it out by reading the following  job advert:
It’s been an inspiring summer with the Olympics and Paralympics raising all of our expectations and levels of attainment. Here at the London Borough of Sutton in South West London we are already leading the race for gold with our One Planet programme and we’re a contender too in education, with some of the best performing schools in the country.

We want you to work with us now to become a pace-maker for neighbourhood and locality working across the country and as a model for others to follow.

We have two roles for innovative managers with a passion for delivering a range of services more locally, and who can help us achieve excellence and transform our ambitions into the highest possible standards.

Based in our new Environment and Neighbourhood Directorate you will be working with council colleagues, residents and partner organisations to commission services locally. You will be adept at engaging and involving residents and working with them so they have more of a say. Working with local councillors you will break new ground with our local committees, bring the very best practice into neighbourhood and locality working and help to create increased opportunities for residents to take part and take pride in the life of the borough.

It's rather lacking in specifics, is it not? We know Sutton is 'going for gold' in the 'Council Olympics' and whilst tailoring services to meet the needs of those who use them is good, what exactly are those services going to be? What new ground is going to be broken? Why do councillors need two Locality Lead Officers to break it with them?

It all seems just a little airy fairy to me. I'm sure councillors will know by talking to their constituents what their local needs are. These two jobs, and the job of a Community Involvement and Innovation Officer, appear to be box ticking exercises, and I very much doubt residents will notice any real material difference.In our 2010 report on Unnecessary Jobs, we discovered Croydon Borough Council employed five equality and diversity officers. Neighbouring Bromley didn't employ any. Croydon either wants a replacement or is about to swell the ranks as it advertises for another Equality Officer paying £37,179 - £38,961 per annum. Here's part of what the council has to say:
The Council is seeking to recruit an Equality Officer. This post will report to the Equality Manager and has a key role within the organisation, supporting an ambitious and far-reaching equality agenda. A main purpose of the role will be to support the improvement in performance and practice throughout the organisation by ensuring equality is embedded in all of the council’s activities.

Many councils like Croydon have created mini-departments to comply with the Equality Act 2010. The fact that others have not proves there isn't any evidence that hiring specific staff is necessary.

The London Borough of Sutton was mentioned by me just three weeks ago. Readers may remember Sutton Council was looking for a Community Involvement and Innovation Officer. This week the council is looking for two Locality Lead Officers, paying £38,961 - £41,610 per annum each. So what exactly will they be doing to earn their salary? See if you can work it out by reading the following  job advert:
It’s been an inspiring summer with the Olympics and Paralympics raising all of our expectations and levels of attainment. Here at the London Borough of Sutton in South West London we are already leading the race for gold with our One Planet programme and we’re a contender too in education, with some of the best performing schools in the country.

We want you to work with us now to become a pace-maker for neighbourhood and locality working across the country and as a model for others to follow.

We have two roles for innovative managers with a passion for delivering a range of services more locally, and who can help us achieve excellence and transform our ambitions into the highest possible standards.

Based in our new Environment and Neighbourhood Directorate you will be working with council colleagues, residents and partner organisations to commission services locally. You will be adept at engaging and involving residents and working with them so they have more of a say. Working with local councillors you will break new ground with our local committees, bring the very best practice into neighbourhood and locality working and help to create increased opportunities for residents to take part and take pride in the life of the borough.

It's rather lacking in specifics, is it not? We know Sutton is 'going for gold' in the 'Council Olympics' and whilst tailoring services to meet the needs of those who use them is good, what exactly are those services going to be? What new ground is going to be broken? Why do councillors need two Locality Lead Officers to break it with them?

It all seems just a little airy fairy to me. I'm sure councillors will know by talking to their constituents what their local needs are. These two jobs, and the job of a Community Involvement and Innovation Officer, appear to be box ticking exercises, and I very much doubt residents will notice any real material difference.

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