Senior Programme Manager (NCS) - Maternity Cover

The Challenge
Based in Preston and covering Blackburn, Burnley, Blackpool and West Lancashire.
Salary is £36,000 p/a + benefits
24 Nov 2017
01 Dec 2017
Contract Type
Full Time

About the role
The Senior Programme Manager (SPM) manages the set-up, logistics and operational delivery of our National Citizen Service (NCS) programmes for young people. You will manage and develop a large team, providing leadership and coaching as appropriate. You will be expected to ensure high quality and safe programme delivery, with the ability to respond quickly and effectively to critical incidents and emergencies. The Lancashire zone covers Preston, Blackburn, Burnley, Blackpool and West Lancashire.


  • Provide effective leadership for the setup, delivery and quality of NCS programmes in the zone.
  • Support, develop and directly manage other managers, ensuring that they have clear personal develop plans and objectives.
  • Recruit and manage a multi-skilled team of staff including managing and supporting their personal development and performance.
  • Provide support to Programme Managers and Programme Associate Managers and advise on behavioural, safeguarding and staff management decisions.
  • Manage and oversee the set up of a high quality, youth focussed and locally grounded NCS programme.
  • Develop high quality community partnerships with a range of local charities and social enterprises.
  • Oversee the management of logistics and planning including liaising with transport, venues and residential accommodation providers.
  • Act as the Designated Safeguarding Officer for the zone and ensure compliance with health and safety regulations.
  • Provide out-of-hours on-call cover as part of a rota through delivery periods.
  • Lead on a specific cross-departmental responsibility dependent on strengths and experience.
  • Work in partnership with other internal department leads to provide effective leadership of the zone.

Skills and experience

Youth-work Experience

  • Extensive experience of working with groups of young people (14-19) in residential, educational or outdoor settings.
  • Experience of setting up and leading youth programmes .
  • Track record of dealing effectively with serious incidents and managing safeguarding including making critical decisions under pressure.

Project Management and Logistics

  • Experience in successfully managing and delivering large scale and complex projects on time including managing large budgets and experience of applying health and safety in practice.

People Management

  • Proven track record leading and motivating large teams of people in challenging environments (e.g. residential youth programmes or outdoor education).
  • Experience of coaching and developing effective teams in a fast paced and demanding environment.
  • Experiencing of managing performance and coaching people; values diversity and difference in others.

Community Engagement & Relationship Management

  • Proven track record of successfully working with diverse community groups.
  • Experience working in community engagement and advocating change in society.
  • Establishing and maintaining effective relationships with internal and external stakeholders.

Qualifications and Experience

  • A strong academic record or equivalent relevant experience.


  • Strikingly positive attitude, integrity and resilience.
  • Self-motivated and drive to deliver results; demonstrates self-awareness and desire to develop; seeks to continuously improve self and others.
  • Flexible and responsive approach to work to meet emerging needs of the organisation.

Safeguarding Statement
The Challenge is committed to safeguarding and protecting the young people that we work with. As such, all posts are subject to a safer recruitment process, including the disclosure of criminal records and vetting checks. We ensure that we have a range of policies and procedures in place which promote safeguarding and safer working practice across our programmes. We expect all staff and post holders to share this commitment to safeguarding by ensuring compliance with our policies and practices.

The Challenge is a fulfilling but demanding place to work.  Two-day weekend working will be required on a number of occasions during the year. Early mornings and late evenings will be required at different times throughout the year and you will be expected to take a majority of your leave outside of delivery periods.

Please send a CV and cover letter (max 1 page) to Rachel Slade, Head of Programme Operations,

Note this is a maternity cover post initially fixed term until September 2018.