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Local government officer: Job description

Local government officers are responsible for assisting in the development of council policies and procedures and ensure they are put into practice, making sure that local services are delivered effectively.

Local government offers a diverse and wide-ranging professional environment with good prospects for progression and promotion. It covers a breadth of officer roles, with many specialist areas including housing, finance, human resources, education, planning, transport, tourism, libraries, leisure and recreation, regeneration, social work, health and IT.

This work is likely to involve contact with members of the public, councillors, administrators and specialists in other departments or other local councils/authorities. Some posts, particularly more senior roles, also involve committee work. Some less senior roles will work more exclusively within specific departments, but can still be responsible for a wide range of services.

Typical work activities

Specific activities vary depending on the local authority and department, and also on the level of responsibility. Some departments will involve a lot of work with the public, others may have a more technical function and some will work more predominantly with other council staff and departments.

Common functions include:

  • assisting in the formulation, planning and monitoring of policies and procedures;
  • coordinating the implementation of council/authority decisions and circulating reports to those affected;
  • providing support and guidance to the democratic structure, for example to Cabinet or local committees;
  • coordinating communication strategies, including publications and departmental websites;
  • arranging and servicing meetings;
  • researching, preparing and writing up reports and briefing papers;
  • liaising with other council departments, such as finance or marketing;
  • liaising with external partners and agencies, including private and voluntary sector organisations, contractors and other local councils/authorities;
  • coordinating departmental and corporate plans;
  • monitoring and reporting on performance and quality issues, ensuring value for money;
  • managing and evaluating projects;
  • coordinating and collecting data for external inspections, including evidence of compliance with legislation;
  • providing information, advice and guidance on policy and performance;
  • working with members of the public, councillors and other stakeholders, presenting information at meetings when required;
  • dealing with enquiries and giving advice;
  • supervising and managing staff;
  • managing budgets and funding;
  • providing support and a strategic steer to the management team relevant to your specific area;
  • developing and promoting a policy and performance framework, which contributes to the operational and strategic functioning of the department;
  • coordinating responses to national and local consultations on specific policy areas, such as education.
 
 
AGCAS
Written by AGCAS editors
Date: 
May 2013
 

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