Based at our Cannon Place office, the successful Policy Advisor will join the CBI’s Education and Skills Policy team. The team works across business, the education system, and government to help meet the needs of an ever-changing world of work, influencing education outcomes with the overall aim of ensuring firms have the skills they need to succeed and grow.
Improving education attainment and reducing disparities in education outcomes are some of the main drivers to increasing opportunities for individuals to succeed. It is through these opportunities that businesses can create diverse workforces and flourish. The successful Policy Advisor will be working on issues critical to improving education attainment, from influencing the school curriculum and campaigning to improve business/school engagement. This is a great opportunity to work on issues which impact CBI members across sectors/the UK.
The successful policy advisor will be joining the team at a crucial time as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic is placing education and skills and the opportunities for young people in sharp focus.
Reporting to the Head of Education and Skills Policy, the successful candidate will be responsible for:
- Consulting with CBI members to develop policy positions that represent the business view on a wide range of education issues
- Working with external stakeholders, such as civil servants and other think tanks, to support the objectives of CBI members
- Engaging with CBI members to support business engagement with schools
- Co-ordinating with colleagues in the policy, press and marketing teams to ensure consistency and coherence in our messages to government and businesses
- Contributing to the delivery of a compelling offer on education and skills policy issues that encourages more businesses of all sizes and sectors to join the CBI
- Providing CBI members with political and policy insight and intelligence so that they can make more informed HR decisions
- Contributing to projects across the Education and Skills team, as well as People and Skills Directorate when appropriate.
This role is a great opportunity to join the UK’s largest business representative organisation at a time of unprecedented political and economic change.
Developing the CBI’s education and skills policy positions, both new and existing, including:
- Building a strong grasp of the policy issues affecting education and its outcomes for business, including school curriculum and schools engagement with business.
- Developing policy by consulting CBI members to produce positions with broad support from employers of all sizes and sectors
- Working on multiple discrete projects (e.g. policy briefs, reports, consultation responses), using project management skills to track progress, manage risk and measure success
- Drafting papers for the Exec-level Employment & Skills Board which meets .quarterly and informs and mandates the CBI’s work on employment, labour markets, education and skills.
Communicating the value of the CBI’s education and skills policy work to members and in the media, including:
- Publicly campaigning on the role education plays in the success of business.
- Distilling political and practical insight on education and skills policy issues into accessible and engaging content for CBI members.
- Providing CBI members with examples of good business school engagement to inform how they support young people and attract the people and skills they need
Building strong internal and external relationships, including:
- Acting as a point of contact within the CBI for members, staff, and other stakeholders on education and skills policy, including advising your line manager and director of relevant debates in the wider political and media landscape
- Working alongside colleagues in Press and Marketing to maximise the impact of the CBI’s policy work with CBI members and stakeholders in the government, the opposition, and media.
- Meeting with officials in key government departments, including the Department for Education.
- Meeting with business leaders with responsibly for people issues at CBI member companies to ensure that the education and skills team’s work meets business’ priorities.
Supporting the CBI’s commercial strategy, including:
- Acting as a representative for the education and skills work to support commercial colleagues to recruit and retain CBI members, including strategic accounts
- Contributing to a strong member proposition on education and skills policy, including working with commercial colleagues to secure partnerships that grow the CBI’s non-subscription income
Knowledge & Experience
What an individual must know or understand to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements
- Demonstrable interest in politics and public policy
- Enthusiasm for education and skills issues
- Awareness of the commercial environment facing businesses
- Knowledge of the UK’s policymaking process
- Experience working on education policy
- Familiarity with the workings of business, particularly HR
Role specific skills
The practical actions required to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements
- Strong research and analytical skills – including quickly picking up new issues and concepts, assessing new information, proposing solutions and advising colleagues
- Excellent oral and written communication – including the ability to communicate to a wide range of audiences
- Influencing skills – including the ability to persuade policy makers of the benefits of working with business to achieve joint education policy aims
- Good interpersonal skills – including the ability to maintain member satisfaction and manage external stakeholder relationships, and to collaborate with a range of internal teams to deliver the education and skills team’s work
- Organisational skills – including delivering complicated projects with multiple moving parts in a shifting external environment
- High personal efficiency, proactivity and flexibility, with the ability to work well in a team – including working independently or with others in a fast-paced and at times pressured environment.
The behaviours and characteristics required to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements
- Collaborative – Listening, seeking views and sharing information; constructively challenging when appropriate
- Taking ownership – Ensuring delivery and holding others to account; can influence, irrespective of hierarchy
- Agile – Proactive and responsive to provide a strong member service; responding positively to shifting priorities
- Commercial – Awareness of the wider business environment
- Innovative – Exploring, sharing and integrating best practice; generating new ideas and challenging a mind-set of “what we’ve always done”
- Analytical – gathering information and using logic to analyse, problem solve, evaluate risk and make decisions
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