Vice-Principal, Flexible Deployment

Durham, United Kingdom
£42,149 - £50,296 per annum
26 Oct 2021
End of advertisement period
09 Nov 2021
Contract Type
Full Time

Experience Durham

Grade 8: - £42,149 - £50,296 per annum
Open-Ended/Permanent - Full Time
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date: 09-Nov-2021, 7:59:00 AM

The Department and role purpose

The Colleges and Student Experience Division includes the 15 Maintained Colleges, the Enrichment Office, the Student Support and Wellbeing Directorate, and the Wider Student Experience Operations Directorate.

The Vice-Principal, while line managed in the Enrichment Office, will be deployed flexibly to Colleges experiencing gaps at Vice-Principal level due to vacancies, staff sickness or other reasons. The post holder will be involved in a wide range of activities aimed at furthering the College and University strategy, especially in relation to student enrichment and the future development of the College.

The Vice-Principal will support the Head of the College(s) they are deployed to (a) in ensuring the College offers a supportive and stimulating environment for academic study, cultural and developmental activities, and social interaction which engages students, staff, SCR members, visitors and alumni; and (b) in promoting and enabling intellectual curiosity, personal effectiveness, wellbeing and resilience, and a sense of community and responsibility among all students. Balance and focus of responsibilities will be agreed with the College Principal.

At times when there is no College with a gap at Vice-Principal level, the post-holder will contribute at an appropriate level to projects relating to student enrichment.

Core responsibilities

  • Provide expertise aimed at furthering the College, Division and University Strategy, especially in relation to the personal development of students, and oversee the provision of student support in partnership with the Student Support and Wellbeing Directorate.
  • Manage and develop service, infrastructure and people performance across one or more teams.
  • Provide feedback on team and individual performance and identify development needs, conducting regular staff ADR and performance reviews.
  • Recruit, induct, train and develop new team members.
  • Help to shape the skills and expertise of future team members and design work structures to meet operational and strategic goals.
  • Handle the vast majority of HR issues within the student experience and support team team, referring more complex HR issues to appropriate support services/senior management.
  • Liaise and engage with key stakeholders and internal and external contractors to influence opinion, delivery and reputation of services.
  • Contribute to the scoping and resource planning across a range of activities at operational and possibly strategic level.
  • Lead on the design, implementation and monitoring of policy and quality standards, procedures and systems to ensure effective working and continuous improvement.
  • Promote and develop a deep understanding of organisational policy and external developments.
  • Devolve responsibilities to team members to ensure continuity of service provision and encourage skills development.
  • Ensure all activities, processes and transactions are accounted for accurately and promptly to meet regulatory and professional service and policy standards.
  • Ensure all stakeholder-facing staff provide an accessible, friendly and professional service by shaping processes for inducting and developing staff.
  • Implement processes to manage the integrity and security of all commercially and professionally sensitive and personal data.
  • Lead internal business meetings, working groups and sub-committees at operational service level to governance, organisational policy and standards for the service.
  • Responsible for allocating and monitoring the non-staff college financial budget and resources relating to WSE.
  • Analyse stakeholder feedback, implementing and reviewing service provision.

Role responsibilities

  • Lead the development of appropriate structures, procedures and initiatives for maximising students’ personal development and (in partnership with the Student Support and Wellbeing Directorate) optimising student support within the College.
  • Develop and maintain a vibrant and distinctive community in which students are able to grow and develop in confidence academically, socially and culturally.
  • Develop external relations, identifying and developing opportunities for communities of practice, employers, alumni and donors to contribute to the College via extra-curricular activities and increased levels of participation.
  • Build and sustain an influential network of contacts both internally and externally to influence and promote the reputation of the College and the University.
  • Contribute to the definition, development and implementation of service standards.
  • Deliver a specialist service using creativity and innovation for communication and promotion purposes, to engage and influence internal and external stakeholders.
  • Provide professional guidance and advice to students and service users with complaints and referrals.
  • Take responsibility for student disciplinary matters in consultation with the Head of College, liaising where required with relevant support departments.
  • Represent the College and University at promotional events, marketing them effectively to potential student applicants, parents, schools and sponsors; contribute to the delivery of presentations at conferences.
  • Deliver activities and participate with others to generate external income.
  • Hold responsibility for leading the College and representing it at meetings in the absence of the Head of College.
  • Any other reasonable duties.

Specific role requirements

Being an integral and visible member of the College Community where deployed and working some evenings and weekends to support the delivery of College activities and initiatives as appropriate.

Participating in rota duties for the provision of Emergency Cover at the discretion of the Head of College where deployed.


  • Excellent oral and written communication skills and the ability to develop effective working relationships, both internally and externally.
  • Proven IT skills, including use of Microsoft Office.
  • Educated to degree level or equivalent experience and a track record of achievement in a recognised academic or comparable field.
  • Knowledge and expertise in student development and support.
  • Track record of management and development experience.
  • Experience of providing specialist advice and guidance to a range of customers and colleagues, including students and more senior colleagues.
  • Ability to contribute to planning at operational and strategic levels.
  • Willingness to undertake continuing professional development in the field of student development and support.
  • Knowledge and experience of ensuring compliance with regulatory and organisational policy and guidelines.
  • Experience of being able to network effectively and develop strong and productive working relationships, to influence perceptions of the University.
  • A good understanding of higher education in the UK and an appreciation of the role of colleges in a collegiate University.
  • Experience of working in a multi-cultural environment and an understanding of needs of students from minority groups.
  • A commitment to issues of diversity, equality and internationalisation.

DBS Requirement: Please note that the succesful applicant will require DBS disclosure.