Help us support Lewisham - Working at CAL

The CAL team is a diverse and committed group of individuals looking to make a difference in the lives of the people who live and work in the Borough of Lewisham.  If you would like to join us in making a difference take a look at our current vacancies:

We are currently recruiting for the following roles.




To apply, please follow instructions in the role description.


Location: Central Lewisham (Leemore Centre), but may be required to work anywhere within the CAL service

 

Full-time: 35 hours per week


Salary: £22,000 to £27,000 (depending on experience)

 

 

About Citizens Advice Lewisham

Citizens Advice Lewisham (CAL) is an independent local charity and also a member of the national organisation Citizens Advice. We provide free, independent, impartial and confidential advice on issues ranging from welfare benefits, debt management, housing, immigration and family matters. We are the coordinator of the Advice Lewisham Partnership, a consortium of five leading local advice agencies. Our funders include the Money Advice Service, local council and Trust for London, and we are accredited by the FCA. We are a high performing team working to quality standards. Last year we served over 22,000 clients and raised £1.9M in outcomes.  

About the role

Provide quality generalist advice on a range of issues in particular   energy, debt and benefits.

 

Context of role

Work as part of the advice team to ensure delivery to agreed targets and quality standards of CAL services. 

 

Generalist Advisor

  • Interview clients using sensitive listening and questioning skills in order to allow clients to explain their problem(s), and empower them to set their own priorities.
  • Use the Citizens Advice AdviserNet website to find, interpret and communicate the relevant information.
  • Research and explore options and implications so that clients can make informed decisions.
  • Act for the client where necessary by calculating, negotiating, drafting or writing letters and telephoning.
  • Negotiate with third parties such as statutory and non-statutory bodies as appropriate.
  • Ensure that all work conforms to the organisation’s office manual and the Advice Quality standard / Legal Aid Agency’s Quality Mark / other funding requirements, as appropriate.
  • Ensure that work reflects and supports the Citizens Advice service’s equality and diversity strategy.
  • Maintain detailed case records for the purpose of continuity of casework, information retrieval, statistical monitoring and report preparation.

 

About you

You will have:

  • Proven track record as a generalist adviser including experience of providing debt and benefits advice.
  • Ability to commit to and work within the aims, principles and policies of the Citizens Advice service.
  • Ability to interview clients using sensitive listening and questioning skills to get to the root of the issues and empower clients, whilst maintaining structure and control of meetings.
  • Ability to give and receive feedback objectively and sensitively and a willingness to challenge constructively.
  • Understanding of and experience of meeting current quality standards in generalist and debt advising.
  • A good up-to-date understanding of equality and diversity and their application to the provision of advice.
  • Understanding of the issues affecting society and their implications for clients and service provision.
  • Effective written and oral communication skills with particular emphasis on negotiating.
  • Ability to research, analyse and interpret complex information and produce and present clear reports verbally and in writing.
  • Ability to monitor and maintain own standards.
  • Ability to use IT systems and packages; and electronic resources in the provision of advice, record keeping and document production.

 

 

Closing date: 18/06/2021.

 

Completed application form and diversity monitoring form (4 and 5, below) should be sent to: [email protected]

 

1. Job Description

 

2. Notes for applicants on completing the application form

 

3. Background information

 

4. Application form

 

5. Diversity monitoring form

 

Supervision:         Reporting to the Advice Services Manager

 

Hours:                    17.5 hours per week 

 

Venue:                Leemore Hub, but may be required to work anywhere within the CAL service

 

Salary:                  £31,000 per annum (£15,500 per annum pro rata)

 

Role purpose

 

To take the main role in completing quality of advice compliance, checks and providing support and cover for supervision tasks.

 

Quality Compliance

 

Monitor the case records / telephone calls of designated staff to meet the stipulated standard and service level agreement.

 

  • Complete regular independent file reviews of advisers in accordance with Citizens Advice and Advice Lewisham quality standards
  • Undertake Quality of Advice audits of Advice Lewisham partners assessors and advisers in accordance with agreed Advice Lewisham quality standards
  • Assist with Citizens Advice QAA monthly audits.


Supervising and Support cover

  • Manage the practicalities of telephone assessment and advice helpline and drop in assessment and digital support sessions and ensure adequate staffing and resource as required.
  • Keep technical knowledge up to date and provide appropriate level of support and supervision to individual workers depending on their level of competence as required
  • Ensure remedial and developmental issues are identified and acted on to develop individuals, improve the quality of service and ensure clients do not suffer detriment due to poor or inadequate advice.
  • Keep up to date with research and campaigns issues and ensure that this is promoted and integrated in a way relevant to the role.



Staff teamwork

 

  • Maintain effective admin systems and records, work cooperatively with colleagues, encourage good team work and clear lines of communication. Attend regular internal and external meetings. 
  • Create a positive working environment in which equality and diversity are well-managed, dignity at work is upheld and staff perform optimally.
  • Participate in the recruitment & selection process as well as induction of new staff as required.

 

Learning, development and training

 

  • Identify learning and development needs of designated staff and contribute to the organisation’s learning and development plan.
  • Provide guidance tutoring support and feedback to trainee volunteer advisers as required to develop their knowledge and understanding in accordance with agreed procedures and protocols.
  • Organise internal and external learning and development activities to ensure the competence and continuing development of designated staff.
  • Contribute to assessment activities and competence of designated staff and volunteers.
  • Networking
  • Develop links with relevant statutory and non-statutory agencies relevant to the role.
  • Use skills and competences to promote the organisation and foster good relationships with external organisations.

 

Context of role

 

Work as part of the advice team to ensure delivery to agreed targets and quality standards of CAL services.

Person specification

 

Essential criteria 

 

  • Citizens Advice generalist adviser certificate and at least 2 years post-certificate experience of providing advice and managing and advice caseload
  • Experience as an Advice Session Supervisor.
  • Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing, conduct research and analyse and interpret complex information to produce and present reports clearly.
  • Demonstrable understanding of the issues involved in interviewing clients, an up-to-date understanding of equality and diversity – it’s application to providing advice and the supervision and development of staff.
  • Commit to, and work within, the aims, principles and policies of the Citizens Advice service, demonstrating the understanding of issues affecting the society and the implications of this on the client and the service.
  • Proven ability to manage / supervise others including ability to recruit, develop and motivate staff as well as ability to give and receive feedback objectively and sensitively.
  • Proven ability to monitor and maintain service delivery against agreed targets as well as monitor and analyse statistics and check accuracy of calculations.
  • Proven ability to supervise and monitor advice work and to maintain casework systems and procedures, use of IT systems and packages, electronic resources in the provision of advice and the preparations of reports and submission.
  • Understanding of Citizens Advice Quality of Advice standards

 

Desirable criteria


Experience of undertaking casework auditing to Citizens Advice quality standards.

 

 

Closing date: 25/06/2021

 

Completed application form and diversity monitoring form (4 and 5, below) should be sent to: [email protected]

 

1. Job Description

2. Notes for applicants on completing the application form

3. Background information

4. Application form

5. Diversity monitoring form

Job title: Money Advice Caseworker

 

Reports to: CAL Debt Supervisor, Line Manager

 

Contract type: Permanent

 

Working hours: Full time – 35 hours per week 

 

Salary grade: £27,000- £30,000 per annum, depending on experience 

 

Location: Leemore Lewisham – might be required to work from different locations (outreach)

 

About Citizens Advice Lewisham

Citizens Advice Lewisham (CAL) is an independent local charity and also a member of the national organisation Citizens Advice. We provide free, independent, impartial and confidential advice on issues ranging from welfare benefits, debt management, housing, immigration and family matters. We are the coordinator of the Advice Lewisham Partnership, a consortium of five leading local advice agencies. Our funders include the Money Advice Service, local council and Trust for London, and we are accredited by the FCA. We are a high performing team working to quality standards, with our caseworkers last year alone serving over 12,500 clients and securing outcomes in excess of £5.7M

About the Role

We are seeking a highly motivated Money Adviser to join our well-established Casework Team to provide debt support, money advice and financial capability as part of our contract with the Money Advice Service.  It is an exciting role helping people, often those at greatest risk of vulnerability to maximise their income and minimise their expenditure. You will be joining a friendly, supportive and hardworking team to deliver excellent and successful money advice to everyone who lives, works or studies within the borough. This involves seeing clients, assessing their needs and prioritising support. It is important that accurate records are maintained that meet agreed quality standards.  The Caseworker plays a key role in a strong team of 10 specialist advisors working alongside a further 20 generalist advisors. We have contacts with relevant local agencies to ensure appropriate referrals when required. You will need to have at least a year’s experience of providing money advice casework including dealing with multiple debt, housing issues and income maximisation, preferably within a debt advice agency, and hold a valid Money Advice Service accredited qualification in debt advice to level three, or higher or Citizens Advice Certificate in Generalist Advice Work. The role requires you to deliver holistic support to each client, providing practical  guidance on other debt related issues, managing creditors on the clients behalf, identifying referral routes to other support agencies where necessary and empowering clients with self-help guidance. As this role is currently remote, you must be comfortable adapting to new technology. We offer a range of employee benefits, including generous annual leave, an employer matched pension contribution, and training and development opportunities to continue your professional development.

Job purpose: 

 

  1. To provide over-indebted Londoners with free, face-to-face advice that is accurate, effective and tailored to individuals’ circumstances 
  2. To maintain detailed case records 
  3. Keep up to date with legislation, policies and procedures and undertake appropriate training

 

Main duties and responsibilities:

  1. To provide over-indebted Londoners with free, face-to-face advice that is accurate, effective and tailored to individuals’ circumstances including: 

∙ Interviewing those that access our service using sensitive listening and questioning skills in order to allow them to explain their problem(s) and empower them to set their own priorities 

∙ Researching and exploring options and implications so that those accessing our service can make informed decisions 

∙ Ensuring income maximisation through the appropriate take up of income, including those relating to water charges, benefits, tax and housing 

∙ Providing in-depth quality advice and on-going casework, including acting for the client where necessary using appropriate communication skills and channels 

∙ Maintaining detailed case records, ensuring that all work meets all auditing and quality standards and the requirements of the funder 

 

  1. To maintain detailed case records this includes: 

∙ Ensuring that all work meets all auditing and quality standards and the requirements of the funder 

∙ Ensuring all case records are written up in a timely manner 

 

  1. Keep up to date with legislation, policies and procedures and undertake appropriate training, this includes: 

∙ Ensuring you complete a minimum of 16 hours/equivalent of technical debt advice CPD accredited training or qualifying activity and maintaining an up-to-date record of all training sessions 

 

  1. Contribute to team

∙ Work to an agreed work-plan, meeting targets and milestones

∙ Prioritise and manage your own workload 

∙ Be an active member of the team, identifying opportunities for your own development 

∙ Compliance with CAL policies and procedures, including health and safety 

∙ Demonstrate financial efficiency and value for money throughout work 

∙ Ensure that all services comply with equal opportunities and other relevant policies and quality standards and good practice 

 

  1. Other 

∙  Undertake additional tasks as defined by the CEO and Line Manager

 

Person specification: 

 

Attributes and Behaviours
Understanding of and commitment to the aims and principles of the Citizens Advice service and its equality and diversity policies. Essential
An ordered approach to casework and an ability to follow set procedures concerning casework and file management to achieve the expected standard required of the role. Essential
Effective oral communication skills with particular emphasis on negotiating and representing. Essential
Effective writing skills with particular emphasis on negotiating, representing and preparing reviews, reports and correspondence. Essential
Numerate to the level required in the tasks. Essential
Understand the issues involved in interviewing clients. Essential
Ability to remain non-judgmental. Essential
Ability to provide outstanding customer service.  Essential
Ability to prioritise own work, meet deadlines and manage caseload. Essential
Ability to use sensitive listening and questioning skills to get to the root of the issues and empower clients, whilst maintaining structure and control of meetings  Essential 
Ability to give and receive feedback objectively and sensitively  Essential
Understanding of the debt advice model with proven casework skills and experience of dealing with complex and challenging cases  Essential
A commitment to continuous professional development, including a willingness to develop knowledge and skills in advice topics  Essential
Knowledge and Experience  
Previous experience of providing debt advice in non-for-profit organisations. At least one year, or equivalent, competencies in debt advice Essential
Hold a valid Money Advice Service accredited qualification in debt advice to level three, or higher  Essential
Citizens Advice Certificate in generalist advice work Essential
Experience of delivering high quality advice, casework and financial capability sessions to meet targets whilst ensuring collection of data to support funder’s monitoring and reporting requirements  Essential
Have essential IT and telephone skills and ability to use an online based Client Management System (CMS) to deliver advice across multiple channels and maintain case records  Essential
Hold a Certificate in Money Advice Practice (Cert MAP) from the IMA in partnership with Staffordshire University  Desirable
Closing date for applications: 16/06/2021

 

How to Apply:

Completed application form and diversity monitoring form (4 and 5, below) should be sent to: [email protected]

 

1. Job Description


2. Notes for applicants on completing the application form


3. Background information


4. Application form


5. Diversity monitoring form

Skip to content