Placement Officer - Kent
- Job Description
Anchor Foster Care Services is committed to safeguarding and protecting children, young people and vulnerable adults, and the promotion of equal opportunities and valuing diversity. Anchor expect all staff, stakeholders, students and volunteers to share this commitment.
Hours of Work
Fulltime (37.5 per week)
Duration of Job
Purpose of Job
To efficiently and effectively process incoming Local Authority referrals for foster placements, working with other relevant members of staff to progress matching and placement planning, with the joint aim of making well-matched fostering placements with Anchor’s foster carers.
No. of staff Managed
As Line Manager
As Counter Signatory
State what % of the job is represented by each duty
Duty & Standards – measurable in terms of time, cost, quality or quantity.
1. Duty (%) 50%
Initial screening and response to incoming referrals
- Within 20 minutes of receipt, all incoming referrals from “high priority” local authorities read and reply with appropriate response (i.e. 1) reply no vacancy locally, 2) reply possible vacancy but not locally, would you like to see profile, 3) reply good potential match locally and profile attached),
- In cases where the reply is potentially a good match locally and profile attached, this should be on basis of matching criteria already agreed with SSW and carer and clearly visible to placements officer,
- Within 8 hours of receipt of incoming referrals from “low priority” local authorities read and action 1st stage response (i.e. reply no vacancy locally, reply possible vacancy but not locally, reply good potential match locally with profile),
2. Duty (%) 25%
Progress collaborative matching, negotiation and placement arrangements
- Within 5 minutes of reply from LA that they are interested in a profile sent, send referral details to carer and available SSW/manager by agreed means,
- Follow up phone call to carer and/or SSW within 5 mins of LA positive reply to make sure they have received it the profile and agree that if interested they will get back within any specific questions within an agreed time (e.g. 20 minutes),
- Within 10 minutes of reply from LA that they are interested based on the carer profile, provide LA with access to/copy of any further documentation requested (e.g. Form F, latest annual review),
- Contact the referring LA with any questions on the referral from the carer or their SSW,
- If not heard from LA within 2 hours (or by end of the day if less than 2 hours)? of sending additional info (i.e. Form F etc), make a follow up call to make sure they have received the info and enquire if there is any progress
- When LA indicates then they wish to place, agree arrangements for further discussion on details with relevant person - placements manager, SSW/area manager
- Before the close of the day, update carers and SSW on where things stand with the matching/potential placement process for all referrals still open,
- In cases where is has been agreed that a new placement will start that afternoon/evening ensure that the carer and their SSW/manager are clear about the plans for welcoming and settling in,
3. Duty (%) 15%
Referral and Placement “paperwork”
- Within 30 minutes of a new placement being agreed in principle, start to complete initial risk assessment and matching form to best of ability and send immediately to relevant SSW/manager to finish and return,
- Within 12 hours of looked after child/ren going into the carers home, populate a placement plan using the available information and email to SSW/Area Manager with standard reminder detailing what they need to do with this,
- By the end of each week, ensure that all referrals received within the previous five working days are correctly entered onto the CHARMS database
4. Duty (%) 10%
- Arranging, in liaison with SSWs, internal placement respite placements following agency procedures for this,
- Assist with administration of placement additional support packages as required
- Attendance at placement planning meeting with SSW as agreed with line manager.
5. Duty (%)
Please specify any passport/visa and/or nationality requirement.
Right to work in the UK/leave to remain
Please indicate if any security or legal checks are required for this role.
Enhanced DBS check
B. Person Specification
Please see Anchor’s Competency Framework
Making it happen: Level 1
Taking action when necessary
Consistently meet objectives
Willingly take on new challenges
Making it happen: Level 2
Identify barriers to success and tackle them before they become an issue?
The position holder will be required to demonstrate all behaviours, on the job. These will be assessed during performance evaluations.
Working together: Level 1
Seek and use creatively what Carers of different backgrounds have to offer
Being Accountable: Level 1
Focus time on the activities that will deliver benefits
Remain determined when faced with obstacles or setbacks
Skills and Knowledge
Please see Anchor’s Skill Dictionary
Manage relationships with stakeholders:
Able to communicate consistently and effectively and respond to changing circumstances in order to enhance Anchor’s reputation
Manage relationships: Able to lead in managing relations with local authority placements teams
Assessed at application and/or interview and during performance evaluations.
Reading: Able to read referral documents quickly, spotting key information and use to inform initial matching decisions
Writing: quickly compose concise and clear email responses to progress placement matching, with needs of reader in mind
Speaking: Avoid discriminatory language, ask questions to clarify issues, listen attentively, use appropriate tone of voice and polite
IT skills: Basic knowledge of Outlook, MS Word and Excel
IT: knowledge of CHARMS database
Sectorial: Understanding of the UK looked after children system
Sector: Knowledge of the fostering sector and of placement finding.
At least 1 year working in a fostering service or similar setting,
At least 1 year working in a “customer facing” role
Experience of working with looked after children
Experience of supporting foster carers
Assessed at application and/or interview.
GCSE/O level English Language at least grade B
NVQ Level 3 Childcare qualification (willingness to undertake or equivalent)
A level English Language
Assessed at application and/or interview.