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Team manager

The team manager will be responsible for supervising, leading, and supporting a team of social work practitioners and support staff within a statutory child protection service area (ie: child in need, child protection, children looked after).

Due to the nature of the work, you will be expected to work in an often stressful working environment and dealing with a variety of complex, risky, and diverse issues when supporting and safeguarding the many children and young people we work with.

You will be responsible for risk management and decision making within the team.

This requires you to have extensive knowledge and experience with professional standards for social work as well as the laws, statutory guidance, and local policies and procedures and to ensure these are being modelled and adhered to within the team.

In line with our Signs of Safety practice model, it is expected you will have previous training and/or experience working with a solution focused approach.

This will highlight the importance of respectful and collaborative working relationships with families and professionals in order to bring about improved safety and outcomes for the children we serve.

You will recognise both areas of strength and safety, as well as worries and danger which will then help inform the next steps in a child's safety and support plan.

You will be expected to have a good breadth of experience working with children and young people and supervising other members of staff.

You will be responsible for maintaining a staff compliment congruent with the workload of the team, as well as assisting with recruitment, retention, and support the ongoing learning and development of those within the team.

You will also contribute to the strategic oversight and development of the service.

This will involve making contributions and giving feedback in management meetings on performance as well as promoting and implementing any agreed service or strategic improvement plans.

You will have a proficient ability to communicate in English and be able to influence others in an effort to help coordinate services and supports in the best way possible to keep children as safe and well cared for as possible.

You will have experience and need to lead on making decisions about legal planning meetings and supporting practitioners with the court process, especially where care proceedings are necessary.

To have experience with, or a willingness to be trained and learn, the Signs of Safety practice model and support this approach in all aspects of the work carried out by the team.

To have previous management or supervisory responsibilities of other practitioners working with children and families.

To keep apprised of the changing contexts, research, practice theories and statutory procedures that govern child protection work at the local and national level and to implement these within the team.

To contribute to the development and implementation of local policies and service improvement strategies and support their implementation within the team and service.

To provide specialist social work and child protection knowledge and advice to the team, service, and other multi-agency professionals that helps them better understand the diverse experiences the children and young people have that we work with and support.

To liaise, network, influence, and coordinate with other multi-agency partners to provide the best level of multi-disciplinary support to the children and families we work with.

To represent the local authority in a professional and competent matter, especially when making representations at court, with families, or with other agencies.

To work within the Council's policies, procedures, values, and code of conduct at all times and to help ensure others within the team are aware of and follow these expectations.

To ensure that timely response and action is carried out by the team to any contacts, referrals, allocations, complaints, information requests, child protection enquiries, court directives received, and plans for children.

To ensure the practice and management oversight of all work and performance in the team is compliant with relevant laws, statutory guidance, and local procedures that govern children's safeguarding, adult safeguarding, the social work profession, health and safety, employment law, human rights, and data protection.

To maintain regular supervision and appraisal of worker performance in the team that includes case management oversight, timely decision making, the effective implementation of children's plans, reflective space, respectful challenge, recognising areas of good and weak practice, and supports the ongoing learning and development of workers.

To regularly audit and review case work and records so that case notes are contemporaneous and sufficiently detailed, case summaries and chronologies are up to date, assessments and reports are completed to a good standard and are holistic, that plans are being actioned and monitored for progress, contingency plans are in place and utilised when necessary, the voice and best interest of the child is consistently evident, and decision making takes place at key points in the planning and review process for children.

To chair strategy, review, planning, professional, and network meetings as required.

To authorise, review, and manage expenditures within the prescribed budget so that a good balance is struck between supporting what is in the best interest of the child and spending public funds in the most responsible, effective and efficient manner.

To keep the team fully staffed by supporting the recruitment and interview process for new practitioners, both within the team and across the service, and monitoring this in relation to changing circumstances (ie: workload fluctuations, worker illness or absence).

To be available after hours as necessary to support workers who may be dealing with crisis and casework responsibilities to safeguard children.

To work within the Council's policies, procedures, values, and code of conduct at all times and to ensure you and the team reflect these when carrying out professional responsibilities with members of the public.