Process: Cover letter & C.V
Deadline: Friday 22 October 2021
Based at our Cannon Place office as a hybrid working role, the successful Senior Policy Advisor will join the CBI’s Skills Policy team. Skills are a critical enabler across the economy and the team works with businesses and government to help create the environment which improves firms’ ability to access the skills they need whilst also ensuring that individuals can gain the skills they need to progress and succeed in the labour market.
The team’s work is underpinned by the belief that businesses have and should play a critical role in developing skills of the workforce and therefore must increase overall investment in skills. The CBI’s role is to help unblock the barriers to this investment and ensure that government policy supports firms to do more.
The successful Senior Policy Advisor will join the team at a time when the UK’s economy is adjusting following Brexit and Covid, bringing issues about what the future skills needs are and reskilling imperative into sharp relief.
Reporting to the Head of Skills, the successful candidate will be responsible for:
- Delivering against multiple government and business-facing projects with a high degree of autonomy
- Leading policy development by consulting with CBI members to recommend policy positions that represent the business view on a wide range of skills
- Managing stakeholder relationships with CBI members, civil servants and public agencies to leverage the value of CBI networks and intelligence
- Briefing senior colleagues to enable effective lobbying during events like public appearances or Ministerial meetings
- Ensuring CBI members are appropriated briefed with political intelligence and policy insight and so that they can make more informed HR decisions
- Communicating policy messages to public and CBI member audiences, including by working with colleagues in the Skills Policy team, Press and Marketing teams to devise and deliver effective campaigns
- Contributing to the delivery of a compelling offer on Skills Policy issues that encourages more businesses of all sizes and sectors to join the CBI
Leading the development of CBI’s skills policy positions, including:
- Being a ‘go-to’ for CBI members and senior colleagues on policy issues affecting skills policy, including relevant regulatory changes and good practices.
- Recommending how the wider political context affects the policy development, lobbying priorities and campaign messages of the Skills Policy team.
- Leading consultations with CBI members to develop policy, managing competing commercial interests and recommending positions with broad support from employers of all sizes and sectors.
- Taking ownership of multiple discrete projects (e.g., policy briefs, reports, consultation responses, good practice guidance), using project management skills to track progress, manage risk and measure success.
- Proactively using the CBI’s Exec-level Employment & Skills Board as the primary vehicle to inform and mandate the CBI’s campaigns on Skills policy.
Helping to develop a range of products and services to support business decision making and action:
- Gaining a deep knowledge of business initiatives to take advantage of the opportunities associated with the CBI’s economic vision for an inclusive economy.
- Working with the CBI Proposition Managers and the wider team to design and deliver products that support practical action by businesses. These could include ‘how-to’ guides, policy explainers or workshops.
- Representing the Skills team’s work to business leaders to support commercial colleagues to recruit and retain CBI members, including strategic accounts.
Managing relationships with internal and external stakeholders, including:
- Being a point-person for CBI members, staff, and other stakeholders on Skills policy, including advising senior colleagues of relevant debates in the wider political and media landscape.
- Enabling colleagues in Press and Marketing to maximise the impact of the CBI’s Skill policy work with CBI members and stakeholders in the government, the opposition, and media.
- Building a network of contacts in key government departments, including the Department for Education.
- Proactively engaging with business leaders with responsibility for people issues at CBI member companies to ensure that the Skills policy work meets business’ priorities.
Knowledge & Experience
What an individual must know or understand to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements
- Evidence of delivering multi-stage projects to time and with autonomy
- Evidence of outstanding written and oral communication skills
- Knowledge of the policy formation process in the UK
- Prior work experience in policy, politics or public affairs; equivalent work experience which demonstrates effective lobbying and campaigning will be considered
- Prior work experience engaging/managing relationships with businesses or supporting commercial activities
- Passion for policy issues related to skills is a must; relevant experience in employment, skills or labour market policy would be advantageous.
- The practical actions required to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements
- Proven research and analytical skills– including quickly picking up new issues and concepts, assessing new information, proposing solutions and advising colleagues
- Outstanding oral and written communication– including the ability to communicate to a wide range of audiences in written and oral formats.
- Strong lobbying and influencing skills– including the ability to persuade policymakers of the benefits of working with businesses to achieve joint skills policy aims
- Good interpersonal skills– including the ability to manage external stakeholder relationships, gain policy insight from CBI members and collaborate with a range of internal teams to deliver the skills Policy team’s work
- Planning & organisational skills– including delivering complicated projects with multiple audiences 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 deliver value to CBI members; horizon-scanning and responding positively to shifting priorities
- Commercial– Awareness of the wider business environment, and an understanding of how it impacts skills policy priorities.
- Innovative– Exploring, sharing and integrating best practices; generating new ideas and challenging a mindset of “what we’ve always done”
- Analytical– gathering information and using logic to analyse, problem-solve, evaluate risk and make decisions, sometimes with partial information.
Diversity and Inclusion
At the CBI, we are committed to attracting diverse talent that represents the society we live in.
We encourage applications from all regardless of age, sexuality, socio-economic background, disability, ethnicity, gender, religion, or beliefs. We are committed to building a culture of belonging and inclusion and this is reflected in our policies, practices, and internal employee-led networks and supported by our executive leadership team.
We are a family-friendly organisation, and we encourage flexible working as we want our employees to achieve a healthy work-life balance. Currently, our employees are working flexibly (formally and informally) and remotely due to COVID-19, but we offer the opportunity to work in our offices in line with government guidance if somebody should need to.
Our employee-led networks are: Race and Ethnicity Equality, LGBT + Network, Women’s and Working Families and we have qualified Mental Health First Aiders who support our employees in having good mental health.
To apply click here