Non-job of the week

June 08, 2011 6:37 PM

A different week, but the same old jobs being advertised at inflated salaries. Trafford Council is looking for a Programme Manager, on a 'senior manager pay grade.' The job advert states:
Trafford Council is driving forward an exciting journey of Transformation to redesign services to become even more flexible, efficient and customer focused. To continue on our success in the delivery of the Transformation Programme we are seeking to recruit a self motivated, dynamic professional with a proven track record in successful Project/Programme delivery to undertake a lead role within our established Transformation Team.

When you think councils are looking forward and cutting the numbers of senior staff, you see they manage to sneak another person in under the guise of 'change'.

Last week's non-job was a Sustainability Manager (Community Engagement) in Camden, and pays between £40,506-£43,152. This week, Enfield has managed to go further. This council is looking for a Head of Sustainability on a salary between £53,700-£63,177. If you think you are the ideal candidate, here's the job description:
Enfield Council is seeking a strategic individual to lead a new area of service to ensure we meet our commitments for a sustainable environment. We want to reduce our own impact on the environment and also to facilitate, encourage and bring investment into the borough, to support communities and businesses to develop sustainable futures.

The ideal candidate will be able to : * Strategically manage and develop key initiatives around sustainability, energy and environment. * Identify and tender for external funding opportunities for environmental initiatives. * Deliver carbon and energy reductions through developing initiatives whilst managing others to deliver these programmes. * Liaise with Council Departments to promote initiatives & achieve best environmental practice. * Take a lead role in all energy related matters and manage the carbon reduction commitment requirements. * Advise master planning groups and the Council’s Development Management Service to ensure sustainability is at the forefront of all new development and policies. * Ensure that the Sustainability Team is self-financing in three years. If you have the leadership, drive, vision and ability to deliver to this agenda for Enfield Council, we would welcome your application for this key position.

I'm going to look at two key phrases from the paragraph above:

  • Identify and tender for external funding opportunities for environmental initiatives.

  • Ensure that the Sustainability Team is self-financing in three years


Not only are we paying for this non-job, but we are also paying for the grants it will be chasing. They will come from Quangos (paid for by us), and no doubt the EU (again paid for by us). The only way the sustainability team is going to be self-financing is by either reducing the council's energy bills and/or chasing grants.

Reducing energy consumption saves money, and is something we do at home. We switch-off lights that don't need to be on. In winter we may turn the thermostat down a degree or two to save some money. I switch my computer off when I'm finished working. As we highlighted last year, Windsor and Maidenhead Council reduced its energy consumption by 15% after installing smart meters.

The money saved by councils should them be used to protect front-line services, and help reduce council tax bills. In Enfield it will merely be ploughed back into protecting the financially unsustainable 'Sustainability Team' who will also take more of our money by ensuring the grants are in place for it to continue doing its work.

We have to move away from this grant chasing mentality, and remember what councils are for. They are not employment agencies. They exist to serve us, and provide first class services at the best possible price.A different week, but the same old jobs being advertised at inflated salaries. Trafford Council is looking for a Programme Manager, on a 'senior manager pay grade.' The job advert states:
Trafford Council is driving forward an exciting journey of Transformation to redesign services to become even more flexible, efficient and customer focused. To continue on our success in the delivery of the Transformation Programme we are seeking to recruit a self motivated, dynamic professional with a proven track record in successful Project/Programme delivery to undertake a lead role within our established Transformation Team.

When you think councils are looking forward and cutting the numbers of senior staff, you see they manage to sneak another person in under the guise of 'change'.

Last week's non-job was a Sustainability Manager (Community Engagement) in Camden, and pays between £40,506-£43,152. This week, Enfield has managed to go further. This council is looking for a Head of Sustainability on a salary between £53,700-£63,177. If you think you are the ideal candidate, here's the job description:
Enfield Council is seeking a strategic individual to lead a new area of service to ensure we meet our commitments for a sustainable environment. We want to reduce our own impact on the environment and also to facilitate, encourage and bring investment into the borough, to support communities and businesses to develop sustainable futures.

The ideal candidate will be able to : * Strategically manage and develop key initiatives around sustainability, energy and environment. * Identify and tender for external funding opportunities for environmental initiatives. * Deliver carbon and energy reductions through developing initiatives whilst managing others to deliver these programmes. * Liaise with Council Departments to promote initiatives & achieve best environmental practice. * Take a lead role in all energy related matters and manage the carbon reduction commitment requirements. * Advise master planning groups and the Council’s Development Management Service to ensure sustainability is at the forefront of all new development and policies. * Ensure that the Sustainability Team is self-financing in three years. If you have the leadership, drive, vision and ability to deliver to this agenda for Enfield Council, we would welcome your application for this key position.

I'm going to look at two key phrases from the paragraph above:

  • Identify and tender for external funding opportunities for environmental initiatives.

  • Ensure that the Sustainability Team is self-financing in three years


Not only are we paying for this non-job, but we are also paying for the grants it will be chasing. They will come from Quangos (paid for by us), and no doubt the EU (again paid for by us). The only way the sustainability team is going to be self-financing is by either reducing the council's energy bills and/or chasing grants.

Reducing energy consumption saves money, and is something we do at home. We switch-off lights that don't need to be on. In winter we may turn the thermostat down a degree or two to save some money. I switch my computer off when I'm finished working. As we highlighted last year, Windsor and Maidenhead Council reduced its energy consumption by 15% after installing smart meters.

The money saved by councils should them be used to protect front-line services, and help reduce council tax bills. In Enfield it will merely be ploughed back into protecting the financially unsustainable 'Sustainability Team' who will also take more of our money by ensuring the grants are in place for it to continue doing its work.

We have to move away from this grant chasing mentality, and remember what councils are for. They are not employment agencies. They exist to serve us, and provide first class services at the best possible price.

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