Interim Head of Operations

The role

Job Summary

In addition to overseeing the implementation of policies, projects and programmes, Heads of Service are expected to actively shape future strategy by identifying gaps or constraints in the current provision in line with customer and wider societal needs. They will identify and manage linkages and trade-offs across services. They are responsible for allocating resources of their services to meet the future challenges they face. They are ultimately responsible and accountable for the performance of the services they provide either directly or by commissioning.  They will form the Council’s Leadership Team shaping, owning and driving the corporate strategy and resourcing decisions across the council. They will work proactively with councillors and partners across all sectors to further the ambition and priorities of the Council.

Key Accountabilities

Strategic Management/leadership

  • To provide strong leadership across the council, actively demonstrating the council’s values and behaviours, including strong people management, dealing with issues at an early stage.
  • In partnership with other members of the leadership team and executive team, to deliver within the framework of the council’s financial strategy, the council’s policy objectives as set out in the corporate strategic plan or equivalent. Ensuring continuous improvement, cultural change and organisational development.
  • To be politically aware and responsive.
  • To champion and promote equality of opportunity and diversity in service delivery and employment.
  • To act as an ambassador for the council at local, regional and national events.

Service Management

  • To be a member of the leadership team for a portfolio of services
  • To develop, maintain and implement the service plan for the council and their services, ensuring achievement of continuous improvement.
  • Stay abreast of developments in best practice and legislative and other changes and integrate them into day-to-day work and the development of strategies and plans.
  • To ensure that effective arrangements are made for health & safety, risk management and business continuity for the service.
  • To ensure that communication and implementation of all corporate policies and processes within services take place in a timely and effective manner.

Customer Service

  • In consultation with customers, elected members and drawing on good practice elsewhere, ensure that the service delivers high quality services (direct and support) that meet customers’ needs and are value for money.
  • Develop and maintain and communicate a vision for customer service, quality and continuous improvement.
  • Ensure that effective systems are in place to monitor service quality and customer expectations and experiences and use this information as a basis for improving service delivery.

Financial management

  • Contribute to the annual and medium term review of the council’s financial and service planning process by providing timely and accurate information as required.
  • Manage portfolio of services within revenue and capital budgets and provide accurate financial forecasts as required; ensuring value for money services.
  • Comply with the council’s financial and procurement regulations.
  • Seek out opportunities for the council to provide services that are value for money, exploring opportunities and alternative service delivery methods to ensure service budgets are used effective.


  • Set clear objectives and explain them in relation to organisational strategy and priorities; resource tasks appropriately, manage flexibly to meet planned and unexpected requirements; identify and develop contingencies and strategies to meet barriers to improvement, efficiency and quality.
  • Ensure that the leadership team is regularly briefed on performance, kept informed about progress and given timely advice on policy options and their implementation.
  • To operate within the council’s regulations, policies and procedures in respect of all resources.

Business Development

  • Keep up to date with best practice, regulation and other changes that relate to the services. Advise leadership team and elected members as required.
  • Seek continuous improvement and innovation in services, regularly reviewing policies, processes, procedures and making best use of information and communications technology.
  • Develop productive relationships with private and voluntary sector partners who contribute to the delivery of the council’s strategic plan.
  • Take an active role in partnership with officers of the council on the delivery of cross-cutting and strategic programmes and priorities.


  • To contribute to the council’s processes on communications both internal and external and to ensure excellent relationships are maintained with elected members, partners, the public and the media.
  • Actively seek out opportunities to work with other organisations, responding to the opportunities presented by partnership working to realise their full potential to enrich council services.
  • Act as an advocate for the council and create opportunities to enhance the council’s performance, reputation and image externally with local and other stakeholders.


  • Emergency planning activities as directed by Chief Executive
  • To ensure services and staff comply with the council’s safeguarding policy
  • Any other duties that may be required by the council in accordance with your role.

For a confidential discussion, please contact Jonathan Swain on 07733 304094 or Rebecca Rampat on 07957 730837.

  • CV
  • Cover letter

Interviews w/c 27th November (TBC)

McLean Public is committed to inclusive recruitment practices. If there are any adjustments required to enable a more accessible experience, please do not hesitate to let us know.

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South East England

Interim - 6 months

Closing date: 24th November 2023


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