Church Buildings Strategy Officer
We Include. You Belong.
Our Belonging and Inclusion Strategy aims for everyone in the National Church Institutions (NCIs) to feel that they belong, and are valued for who they are and what they contribute. Together, our people contribute in different ways towards our common purpose, whichever NCI they work in and whatever their background.
The Cathedral and Church Buildings Department (CCB) supports the conservation and development of the Church of England’s cathedrals and church buildings and their contents for worship, mission and community engagement. The CCB provides support for three statutory bodies (the Church Buildings Council, the Statutory Advisory Committee and the Cathedrals Fabric Commission for England), and works closely with other departments within the NCIs.
Churches are our nation's most important public buildings with a Christian presence in every community. The 16,000 church buildings and 42 cathedrals are cared for by volunteers and clergy who also provide significant community services alongside worship. Church buildings, however, face a major conservation deficit, as well as pressing Net Zero Carbon priorities. The National Church advises and supports churches in many ways but there is no regular funding from Government for church buildings, and a funding strategy is essential to help sustain our church buildings.
As Church Buildings Strategy Officer, you will support the Director for Cathedral and Church Buildings (CCB) and the CCB leadership team, as well as the Chief Executive and our senior supporters, with the development of a Buildings and Funding Strategy for Cathedral and Church Buildings.
Your role will include gathering the evidence to support a case for funding, responding quickly to funding and policy opportunities, and working with key stakeholders across the church, government and heritage sectors to support the long-term sustainability of church buildings.
This role is offered on a 1 year fixed term contract. Normal hours of work are 35 per week and we are happy to offer hybrid and agile working arrangements. Further details will be discussed at interview.
The closing date for applications is 13 December 2023 (midnight).
Interviews will be held on 21 December 2023.
The Church of England is for everyone and we want to reflect the diversity of the community the Church serves across the whole country. Therefore, while of course we welcome all applications from interested and suitably experienced people, we would particularly welcome applicants from UK Minority Ethnic Backgrounds and other under-represented groups.
We offer a unique environment with opportunities for continuous learning, generous annual leave for work life balance, season ticket loans and a range of benefits including discounted entry to attractions and what we feel is a market leading package when it comes to our pension scheme.
In relation to the Buildings and Funding Strategy for Cathedral and Church Buildings:
- Provide project management, content and coordination support to the Director for Cathedral and Church Buildings on the Buildings and Funding Strategy for Cathedral and Church Buildings:
- Activities include data collection, policy analysis, stakeholder mapping, planning and participating in wider sector engagement, reviewing and assimilating comments from key stakeholders, drafting of synod/board papers
- This will include working with external stakeholders and partners, including Government departments and parliamentarians, the wider heritage sector, diocesan colleagues, bishops and synod members
- Coordinating and providing rapid response to wider funding opportunities and policy consultations as they arise
- Provide support through research and analysis to support the development of the strategy and the wider church buildings policy agenda.
- Supporting the CCB senior leadership team on strategic and policy issues including historic fabric and use, Net Zero Carbon and sustainability considerations, the future of closed churches and other relevant issues.
- Coordinate and provide secretariat and papers for the Buildings Summit meetings with senior representatives of the Church Commissioners.
In relation to supporting the CCB Leadership Team and Church Commissioners:
- Ensure the provision of accurate and timely ad-hoc advice to the leaders of the Cathedral and Church Buildings Department and the Chief Executive of the Church Commissioners. To research and provide briefings as necessary, including drafting papers, reports and presentations.
- Keep up to date with current events, trends and concerns which might affect the work of the Department, National Church Institutions and the wider Church, in particular with regard to historic buildings funding and policy, digesting and following these up as required.
- Horizon scan for issues and opportunities that might arise for church buildings and consider our possible responses.
- Maintain points of contact with church colleagues undertaking related policy support and horizon scanning activity.
- Draw connections between operational activities in different teams, and with other NCI activities where appropriate.
- From time-to-time support the Chief Executive of the Church Commissioners in developing and delivering related projects.
- Undertake any other activities as may reasonably be required by the Director for Cathedral and Church Buildings.
The Ideal Candidate
- Naturally collaborative, enjoys working with others.
- Interest in strategic issues across the wider heritage and church building sectors.
- Ability to think strategically and creatively explore potential connections.
- Excellent interpersonal skills including the ability to establish positive working relationships with colleagues and senior stakeholders and to represent the Church Commissioners with internal and external partners.
- Good communications skills, both orally and in writing, including the ability to powerfully help shape press releases, advocacy documents and messages for multiple audiences.
- Experience of preparing professional, clear and accurate briefing material, presentations and papers to tight deadlines.
- Evidence of a high level of administrative and organisational ability including document management skills.
- Empathy with the challenges, needs and joys of church volunteers, clergy and worshipping communities.
- Project management skills and ability to oversee and manage a programme of strategic activity with a clear objective.
- Excellent IT skills including complete understanding of the full Microsoft Office suite (e.g. Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint).
- Ability to identify and adapt to changing priorities and work under pressure to achieve deadlines.
- Evidence of planning own work and that of others effectively.
- Proven problem solving and analytical skills.
- Ability to assimilate and work with new concepts quickly.
- Being comfortable with ambiguity.
- Working with colleagues to develop and implement plans and projects, including monitoring of progress to delivery.
- Experience of forming appropriate messaging / communications for strategic projects and current operational priorities.
- A broad understanding of the work of the National Church Institutions, and the Church of England, its structures, values and ethos.
- General knowledge of historic buildings policy.
- Experience of policy work including research, drafting and presentation.
- Friendly, approachable and professional.
- Self-motivated and well organised.
- Proactive and positive attitude.
- Confidence to act for the Director of Cathedral and Church Buildings when required.
- Takes pride in delivering high quality outputs (e.g. presentations, documents).
- Willing and able to personally undertake projects and work programmes without the support of a team of direct reports.
- Models the NCI values and challenges inappropriate behaviours effectively.
- Role model for effective change management and successful in encouraging others to implement change well.
- In sympathy with the aims and ethos of the Church of England.
- Educated to at least A-level standard (or equivalent).
In the National Church Institutions (NCIs), we support the mission and ministries of the Church of England. We work with parishes, dioceses, schools, chaplaincies and other ministries, and with national and international partners including mission agencies, and other denominations and faith groups.-.
Find out more about working for the National Church Institutions at Careers | The Church of England
- We strive for excellence
- We collaborate
- We act with integrity
- We show compassion
- We respect others
We believe our commitment to belonging and inclusion fuels our progress and drives us forward. The NCIs are a safe, inclusive workplace for people of all backgrounds and walks of life. We welcome applications from people of all faiths and of no faith. We want to encourage applications from a diverse group of people who share our values. Even if you have never thought about working for us before, if you have the skills and experience we’re looking for then we would like to hear from you.
If there is anything we can do to support you in your application please get in touch via email to email@example.com
As a Disability Confident Leader, we actively look to attract, recruit and retain those of you who are disabled.
- We are a member of the Armed Forces Covenant, and welcome applications from those of you who have served in our Armed Forces and their families.