East Antrim constituency office job advertisment – Researcher/Assistant Head of Operation

Alliance Party East Antrim Constituency – Researcher/Assistant Head of Operations

Job Specification and Job Description

The key attributes for the position are enthusiasm and the ability to undertake constituency business and to be in possession of appropriate research and policy skills. To represent Stewart Dickson MLA at an appropriate level commensurate with skills and ability. Sympathy and understanding of the aims and principles of the Alliance Party are essential.

Specification: E = Essential. D = Desirable.


  • Relevant third level qualification or appropriate experience (E)

Background and Experience

  • Research and Policy experience (E)
  • Management experience (D)
  • Campaigning experience, political or otherwise (D)


  • Excellent inter-personal skills and ability to work with a wide range of people (E)
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills (E)
  • Ability to record, monitor and complete casework (E)
  • Ability to understand and act on direction (E)
  • Computer skills (E)
  • Research skills (E)
  • Policy skills (E)
  • Previous Accounts experience (D)
  • Online communication skills (D)
  • Publishing skills (D)


  • Knowledge of the NI Assembly, devolved issues and current affairs (D)
  • Knowledge of benefits, housing and similar issues (D)


  • Ability and willingness to represent the aims and objectives of the Alliance Party (E)
  • Flexibility with working hours and attendance at conferences etc (E)

Job Description

The person appointed to this position will be responsible/report to the Constituency Head of Operations. The incumbent will, depending on NI Assembly business, the MLA and/or Head of Operations requirements, work in Parliament Buildings (Monday – Tuesday/Wednesday as appropriate), and from the Constituency Office in Carrickfergus/outreach as appropriate (Wednesday/Thursday – Friday). Outreach work may be undertaken in Jordanstown, Larne and at other locations within the constituency boundaries. The post holder may be responsible for the line management of other constituency staff (part time or voluntary), and for the completion of casework and other administrative functions, including political campaigning.

The main responsibilities of the post are:

  • To provide research briefings and potential parliamentary questions as required by the MLA, including speech drafting and working as appropriate with other Assembly party staff;
  • To deputise for the Head of Operations as required;
  • To represent the MLA to constituents, local groups, businesses and statutory bodies as directed;
  • To provide an outstanding service to constituents;
  • To provide an extension of services across the wider constituency in the form of outreach services;
  • To assist the MLA and/or Head of Operations with constituency surgeries, surveys and outreach support;
  • To deal with day-to-day enquiries from members of the public; taking the appropriate initial action to document and resolve casework or escalate their concerns to the MLA and/or Head of Operations as appropriate;
  • To manage the caseload, ensuring all casework is dealt with appropriately;
  • To ensure the MLA’s diary/office diary is maintained
  • To manage office accounts;
  • To work with other elected representatives throughout the constituency as directed.

These are the main responsibilities/duties, however, when considered necessary and appropriate, other duties will need to be undertaken as reasonably required/directed.

The successful applicant will have the opportunity to develop an understanding of government structures and the political system and to attend relevant training.

Responsible and reporting to: Constituency Head of Operations.

Location: Based in the Parliament Buildings, Stormont and the East Antrim Constituency Office/s as directed.

Salary: the salary range £16,000- £19,000. Hours: 37.5 hours per week (flexibility required). Holidays: 25 plus public holidays.

Duration: for the remainder of the four years of the current NI Assembly mandate and subject to a 6-month probationary period.

To apply forward a covering letter stating why you consider yourself a suitable candidate together with a CV to: application

Stewart Dickson MLA, Alliance Party Whip, Northern Ireland Assembly, Parliament Buildings, Stormont, Belfast, BT4 3XX.

Closing date for applications is – 12:00 pm on Friday 19 Aug 2011.

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