Welfare Rights Specialist – Universal Credit Help to Claim Service (full time paid position)

Welfare Rights Specialist

Welfare Rights Specialist

Job Information

Job details

Job title:      Welfare Rights Specialist – Universal Credit Help to Claim Service
Reporting to: Mark Carter (Project Manager)
Location:       Leith Bureau, 23 Dalmeny Street, Edinburgh, or any other location in Edinburgh as required by the organisations needs.
Employer:     Citizens Advice Edinburgh
Salary:          £26,650
Benefits:       25 days annual leave and 10 public holidays and a 7% employers contribution pension
Hours:           Full time, 35 hours per week. Flexible Work Pattern (Standard working hours are Mon-Fri 9-5)
Term:             Fixed Term to 31 March 2020 (likely extension beyond this date)

Job Description

A unique opportunity has arisen to join the team at Citizens Advice Edinburgh (CAE) and help us deliver our Universal Credit – Help to Claim Service.

This project is being delivered with funding from Citizens Advice Scotland in partnership with the Department of Work and Pensions (UK Government).

Applicants must a solid background in welfare rights advice, including demonstrable experience in dealing with complex welfare rights cases, including a knowledge and understanding of the Tribunal and Appeals Process. 

Applicants must also have experience in debt management and income maximisation and an ability to help clients with basic budgeting and negotiating with others to resolve debt and maximise their income.

Applicants must also have knowledge and skills in designing and delivering training and coaching, as this role will include engaging staff, volunteers, partner organisations, elected members and the public in practical training and advice workshops.

Applicants must also have knowledge and skills in supporting and developing a team of specialist volunteer advisers.

Background

Citizens Advice Edinburgh is an independent charity delivering free, confidential and impartial advice and support to people living and working in Edinburgh.  Every year, we deal with over 25,000 enquiries for advice, from over 13,000 individual clients.  Around 75% of that relates primarily to Welfare Rights and Income Maximisation.

Universal Credit is one of the most significant changes to the welfare system in the UK in recent years and Citizens Advice is where the majority of clients turn to for advice and support to help them understand, gain access to and manage their applications for Universal Credit.  In addition to helping applicats to understand and access their welfare entitlement, Citizens Advice plays a pivotal role in collating facts and evidence about the impact of Universal Credit and using that knowledge and understanding to help make improvements and changes to the welfare system where required.  Applicants must have an understanding of the social and policy context surrounding the welfare system and be an advocate in campaigning for social justice.

Key Tasks

  • Provide specialist welfare rights advice to clients of CAE, particularly in relation to Universal Credit and other welfare entitlement as required.

  • Design and deliver workshop based practical Welfare Rights training to CAE’s staff, volunteers, external stakeholders and the public, to improve their understanding and access to Universal Credit and to improve Digital Inclusion. 

  • Recruit and support a team of volunteer Universal Credit advisers and ensure timely and accurate handling of cases, in line with our policies, procedures and funding requirements.

  • Engage and work with internal and external stakeholders to promote the successful delivery of this project.

  • Ensure that CAE collates evidence of the impact of Universal Credit and work alongside the Chief Executive on how that should influence social policy.

Person Specification

Essential criteria:

Technical

  • Solid understanding of up to date Welfare Rights legislation and its application.

  • Demonstrable experience of dealing with complex welfare rights

  • A knowledge and understanding of the tribunal and appeals process and confidence to represent clients in this environment.

  • Experience of designing and delivering training/coaching including using a range of learning methods such as presentation, facilitation, coaching, peer and social learning techniques.

  • Ability to coach and develop others in providing welfare rights advice.

  • An evidenced commitment to continuous professional development.

  • Proficient in use of IT systems and Microsoft Office programs including Outlook word and Powerpoint with a willingness to learn new systems.

  • Ability to provide high quality reports against project targets and outcomes.

Values and Behaviours:

  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.

  • Persuasive and diplomatic with strong influencing skills, able to adapt personal style to different situations and individuals.

  • Approachable and friendly; able to build strong working relationships with a range of stakeholders, based on trust and respect.

  • Ability to maintain confidentiality at all time.

  • Strong stakeholder management experience

  • Demonstrable commitment to the aims and principles of CAE.

Disclosure:

  • In accordance with our Policy and Procedure for the Protection of Vulnerable Groups, offers of employment will be subject to disclosure checks.

Desirable Criteria:

  •  Educated to degree level or equivalent

  • Understanding and previous experience of the political and social policy context in UK and Scottish Governments

  • Experience and understanding of the voluntary sector

The Application Process

Application deadline:          Midnight on Sunday the 23rd of September 2019

Interview date:                      26th September 2019 – time to be confirmed

Interview location:                23 Dalmeny Street, Edinburgh, EH6 8PG

Interview format:                  50 minute panel interview.

Appointment as soon as possible, given the short term duration of funding.

Please email your completed application to benjamin.napier@caed.org.uk