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Dorset Service Manager - Advocacy
south west advocacy network
  • Salary £31,602 - £34,533 per year
  • Location Dorchester, Dorset,Poole, Dorset (Hybrid)
  • Job Type Permanent, Full-time
  • Category Management , Advocacy
  • Sectors Social Welfare
  • Job Reference :

Job Description

South West Advocacy Network supports and empowers people to have a voice, by ensuring access to quality, independent advocacy. We believe that everyone has the right to be heard & respected, the right to choice in decisions about themselves and the right to be safe.

To help us with our shortlisting, please send a supporting statement/cover letter with your application telling us why you are right for this role.  The successful applicant will work from our Poole or Dorchester office

Service Managers are responsible for their services meeting targets and delivering on contract requirements, including providing the data required for contract and organisational monitoring.

The Service Manager role assumes responsibility for all aspects of SWAN’s Dorset statutory advocacy services. This includes a wide range of advocacy including IMCA, Care Act, IMHA, CHC, Carers and Generic advocacy, and advocacy for parents during child protection proceedings.  Our Service Manager is also responsible for the mobilisation and delivery of SWAN’s social value projects in Dorset.

The role requires a positive approach and a high degree of personal responsibility.  The Service Manager is responsible for the Dorset team’s performance.  Service Managers are experienced and inspirational leaders. They have, or are willing to work towards, a level 5 management qualification.

The post is subject to 2 references including previous employer, evidence of right to work in the UK and an enhanced DBS check.

Direct reports:

Team Supervisors & Supervising Advocates

Duties and responsibilities: General

  • To work collaboratively with other mangers and assist, when necessary, with providing cover during periods of absence and play an active part in SWAN’s Leadership Team
  • Act as the safeguarding lead for the service
  • Stay up to date with relevant legislation, changes to practice and wider activities relating to advocacy; to input to policies / procedures (COVID-19, LPS etc).
  • Act as a role model for exemplary behaviour, attitude and mindset, embedding a culture of trust and accountability and challenging non-congruency and negativity
  • To undertake all training as necessary and stay up to date with Continuing Professional Development
  • Support SWAN to ensure that Advocacy Quality Performance Mark practices are business as usual
  • Take responsibility for embedding good Health and Safety Practices and adhering to the Health and Safety Policy

Supervision and Development of Direct Reports

  • Responsible for the recruitment of their service team
  • Responsible for the effective induction of new staff members and support through their induction period
  • Undertake regular supervisions and Personal Development Reviews in line with the Company requirements for all direct reports
  • Organise and lead regular team meetings, to provide minutes, actions and documentation for each meeting. Team meetings will include professional development and guest speakers
  • Deliver training workshops to the team, including lone working, safeguarding refreshers and the Purpose and Principles of Independent Advocacy (Unit 301) in line with Company requirements and maintain records of attendance
  • Ensure all team members’ training is up to date and work with the Training Manager to create new opportunities to upskill the workforce
  • Undertake all other people management responsibilities for the team in relation to absence and performance management
  • Manage disciplinary and grievance issues if and when they arise

Management of Services

  • Lead and manage the service in the delivery of outcome focused, issue based, person directed advocacy, in line with the relevant legislation for the advocacy discipline, regulations, codes of practice and internal policy and procedures
  • Mobilise and manage local social value projects
  • Responsible for the effective triaging of referrals and allocations of casework after considering prioritisation of cases, current caseloads and team members’ skill set
  • Provide temporary cover for own team’s case work during periods of absence
  • Complete accurate recording and reporting of all service data
  • Ensure the timely completion of high quality commissioning report narratives and case studies
  • Work proactively with the statutory services to promote the service, problem solve and uphold the agreed engagement protocols
  • Communicate and negotiate effectively with a wide range of people, including commissioners, health and social care professionals and voluntary sector staff
  • Identify risks in delivering the service and ensure compliance with risk management procedures
  • Ensure the effective management of de-escalating client issues and handling of complaints
  • Attend stakeholder meetings, forums and networks
  • Ensure that good relationships are developed and maintained with other service providers
  • Raise the profile of SWAN in the local area by any means identified as necessary

Qualifications Required:

  • Diploma in Independent Advocacy Qualification (City & Guilds level 3 or 4) or willing to work towards.
  • Level 5 Management qualification, or willing to work towards

Experience and Knowledge Needed

Experience and knowledge crucial for the role:

  • A record of delivering advocacy or health and social care services
  • Experience of managing people and resources;
  • Knowledge of contracted services in the voluntary sector
  • Understanding of the principles and role of advocacy


The post is subject to 2 references including one previous employer, evidence of right to work in the UK and an enhanced DBS check.

If you would like to join us, SWAN will offer you;

  • A supportive working environment
  • Flexible working to fit around your personal circumstances
  • Regular person-centred Supervision
  • Training and development opportunities
  • Minimum 25 days annual leave plus bank holidays
  • 6% Employer pension and 2% employee contribution
  • Employee Assistance Scheme, offering a free and confidential helpline for you
  • A Wellbeing Day – a paid day from work to allow you time to focus on your own wellbeing
  • A day off on your Birthday
  • In-house Mental Health First Aider
  • Access to an Employee Reward Scheme offering online and instore discounts at a wide range of high street retailers, 

Equality, diversity, and inclusion are core to our values. In the selection of our staff, we are committed to equality with regards to protected characteristics: age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex. and sexual orientation. We welcome applications from disabled people. The Employee must ensure a positive commitment towards equality by treating others fairly and not committing any form of direct or indirect discrimination, victimisation, or harassment of any description and to promote positive working relations amongst employees, suppliers and customers.

The client requests no contact from agencies or media sales.