Job title: Early Years Community Engagement Manager
Contract: Full time (35 hours per week)
Salary: £28,500 – £34,000 (Grade 5)
Closing date: Wednesday 15 September at midday.
Interview date: Tuesday 28 September
The Early Years (EY) Community Engagement Manager leads on the strategic development of our EY community engagement work; liaising with Local Authority Steering Groups, Health Service professionals and other community groups to support families who need extra help to access the benefits of our Bookbug programme. The role also contributes to the overall aim of promoting early book sharing, stories, songs and rhymes to help all children in Scotland lead happier, healthier and safer lives.
The EY Community Engagement Manager advocates for the charity by building and maintaining strong community based networks with key stakeholders and partners, as well as taking a lead role in quality assurance, and the project management of targeted project funding.
The post holder works closely with the Head of Early Years, and other Managers within the EY team to ensure community engagement is a cohesive part of the EY programme.
The post-holder heads up the EY Community Engagement team of 3 people.
- Promote Bookbug community engagement work across all our audiences, providing advocacy for the programme to established local and national steering groups and networks.
- Contribute to the strategic development of the Early Years programme and provide assistance to the Head of Early Years as required.
- Develop and maintain strong working relationships with relevant stakeholders across Scotland (e.g. health, social work, education and library services, and third sector organisations).
- Identify and support the establishment of new working relationships with stakeholders who wish to provide support for our community engagement programmes.
- Develop and implement a national strategy for engaging harder to reach, more vulnerable families through the growing network of Bookbug for the Home practitioners (3000+ practitioners).
- Chair regular local authority steering group meetings, implementing agreed actions and developments.
- Manage Quality Assurance processes and procedures for local Bookbug Trainers and Session Leaders (including a new improvement and mentoring scheme).
- Project management of targeted support initiatives.
- Collaborate with fundraising team to support the preparation of funding applications, where appropriate.
- Develop guidance, resources or new initiatives in response to the emerging needs of families and/or practitioners, in collaboration with the Training and Development Team.
- Apply data and shared local authority knowledge to develop tailored engagement plans for each local authority area, and work closely with the Training & Development Manager to identify and meet specific training needs.
- Leading the planning and delivery of Shared Practice events for local stakeholders and trainees.
- To line manage the Early Years Community Engagement team to ensure effective delivery of the programme and also support their professional development.
- Working with SBT’s research and evaluation team, lead on formal evaluation of Bookbug community engagement work and identify further research needs.
- Maintain an up-to-date knowledge and understanding of national Early Years policies and research, in order to inform the strategic development of community engagement priorities.
- Manage and monitor the EY community engagement budget and specific project budgets.
- Prepare internal and external reports on programme achievements.
- Attend conferences, network meetings and events as an ambassador for Scottish Book Trust.
Skills and Experience
- A degree in Child Development, or similar qualification, with significant practical experience in the Early Years field.
- Knowledge of current early years policy in Scotland and current research in the fields of early years and child development.
- Significant experience of managing complex, large-scale (preferably national) projects.
- A secure knowledge and understanding of the Early Years landscape, policies and practice.
- Skilled network builder with experience of managing key external relationships.
- Ability to work collaboratively across the EY Team to deliver the programme aims.
- Highly motivated, organised and efficient; able to manage, prioritise and delegate a large and varied workload.
- Excellent communication, influencing and negotiation skills; ability to inspire and persuade key stakeholders and partners.
- Excellent presentation skills; confident addressing groups of key stakeholders.
- Knowledge and experience of monitoring performance, providing quality assurance and supporting continuous improvement.
- Knowledge and understanding of evaluation methods and data analysis.
- Experienced problem-solver, adept at finding creative solutions, persevering to achieve goals and resilient in the face of challenges and changing work priorities.
- Excellent budget management skills.
- Excellent people skills and line management experience; experienced at leading, motivating and supporting staff performance and development.
- Excellent IT skills, including Microsoft Office programmes.
The post is based at Scottish Book Trust offices in Edinburgh – the role will be working remotely during current restrictions. A phased return to office working is planned with potential for future hybrid working.
The post-holder must be prepared to undertake travel across Scotland, from time to time travel elsewhere in the UK, and infrequently abroad to conferences and similar, including occasional overnight stays.