EGS Category Officer and Senior Category Officer
Supporting a significant government programme
Great career growth and development opportunity
About Our Client
As part of Defra group Commercial "DgC" and the Government Commercial Function, the DgC Grants Team works across Defra group to support and deliver increased efficiency and effectiveness in issuing of government grants. The team plays a critical role in ensuring that government grant funding provides real value for the taxpayer.
Grants currently account for approximately 20% of Defra's entire annual expenditure. Of this, currently ~£200m of grants are delivered every year by the DgC Grants team. These grants are often competed in the same way as a standard contract and demand many of the same commercial skills as required for delivery of a contract.
Now is a very exciting time to become a member of the rapidly expanding Grants team. Spend through the team is set to increase to ~£600m a year as a result of new post-EU domestic successor fund arrangements and delivery of important new large scale programmes of spend including Official Development Assistance "ODA" (commonly known as overseas aid spend) and the widely publicised Nature for Climate Fund ("NCF). The team offers a real opportunity for growth and development in a unique area of commercial activity.
In addition, for members of the team working on the ODA & NCF programmes, there will be a call for delivery of not only grants but procurements across a spectrum of categories. All procurements will need to be delivered in line with the Public Contract Regulations.
The roles will require individuals with strong commercial acumen and ideally some experience in grant related activity. Grants will need to be delivered based on the Cabinet Office Grants Standards and, for ODA activity, the FCDO's Smart Rules. Any programme related procurements will need to be delivered in line with PCR 2015.
You will be expected to:
- Take a strategic approach to managing relevant stakeholders, both internal and external e.g. collaborate with FCDO, BEIS, Cabinet Office's Grant Management Function and other departments as necessary.
- Lead the delivery of grants (and procurements where appropriate) utilising core grant and commercial processes including:
- The use of leading practice grant tools to develop and implement grant strategies;
- Recommending novel/contentious cases for to the Cabinet Office's New Grants Advice Panel for scrutiny and advice from subject experts.
- Advising and supporting market engagement events;
- Designing Invitation to Apply documents in conjunction with customer.
- Running competitive schemes in accordance with Government Grant Standards, including all requests for information documentation and the management of evaluations;
- Preparing/approving recommendations for grant(s) award;
- Preparing/approving grant agreements in conjunction with stakeholders.
- Deliver effective results on time and budget to contribute to delivery of grant schemes and programmes businesses cases and goals.
The Successful Applicant
The successful Category Officer and Senior Category Officer for this programme of work will be able to demonstrate:-
- A Commercial track record of setting high standards and delivering results in complex environments
- Experience at influencing Commercial decisions and stakeholders at an operational level and constructively challenge when necessary.
- Experience of leading strategic contract award negotiations and resolving dispute resolutions through negotiation
- Ability to building and maintain strong and productive working relationships with stakeholders and suppliers.
- Ability to communicate confidently and concisely. Effectively communicating with a wide range of stakeholders (at all levels) both in a technical and non-technical environment.
- Delivering improvements to ways of working and embedding change.
What's on Offer
DEFRA are looking for people to join them on this commercial journey. They are looking for people from all backgrounds who can demonstrate the right commercial skills, enthusiasm and aren't afraid to challenge traditional ways of operating. Though category experience would be beneficial, it is not always a deal breaker as they are big believers in developing people. Defra have a number of sites across the UK where the roles can be based from including London, Reading, Bristol, Peterborough, York, Warrington, Newcastle to name a few.
Defra offers a generous benefits package along with flexible and remote working.
By joining Defra you will be supported by pioneering development and training. You will work with some of the most experienced and talented people in the industry and experience an inclusive culture that encourages you to fulfil your potential.
Applications for these roles closes on 16th October, 2020.