Assistant Director – Revenues, Benefits and Payroll

Bradford Council want to reflect the communities we serve and diverse at all levels. We therefore positively encourage applications from a diverse range of candidates. To read more about our commitment please visit this statement.

About the Role

Salary: £75,906 to £87,582 (pay review pending)

Bradford is pretty unique, with a special dynamic.  We’re big, diverse, captivating and caring. We have the best of the Dales alongside a vibrant city. Across the District we have great communities, different but connected by our passion for our place.  In Bradford we all belong in different ways and we care.

We’re also one of the biggest local authorities in the country and a thriving District, with an urban city centre sitting alongside historic towns.  This brings all the strengths and dynamism you’d expect alongside some well identified challenges.  Managing our finances to ensure we can do what needs to be done and deliver our strategic goals, whilst embodying our compassion and support to our communities, is key to this role.

Our Assistant Director Revenues, Benefits and Payroll oversees the collection of our council tax and business rates revenue, the administration of housing benefits, the collection of historic debts and a range of other associated services including payroll. But this is more than an operational role. This AD sits at the nexus of our many poverty alleviation and business support strategies, combining the hard edge needed to collect essential resources with a person-centred approach.  Occasionally this means payments can take a bit longer to come in, but our long-term collection rates are good.  Our approach is helping to keep families in homes, children fed, and homes heated, a real-world impact of our deeply held values.  We want someone who can deliver excellent customer focused services that efficiently collect critical revenue and pay essential benefits, whilst helping to shape and inform our ongoing strategies to support local businesses, communities and people and tackling poverty and all that it brings.

Our AD Revenues, Benefits and Payroll will bring deep experience of revenues and benefits, combined with excellent strategic understanding of how these link to corporate agendas, anti-poverty and financial inclusion strategies.  They’ll have overseen similar and relevant services for a similar and comparable organisation. They’ll bring a focus on customer service, build a positive performance culture that balances effective delivery and wider corporate goals and use digital technology to innovate and modernise. If not already IRRV qualified, we’ll support them to get this professional qualification as a key requirement. They’ll bring an excellent understanding of the policy and legal framework underpinning these services alongside a deep understanding of the dynamics and pressures on similar local authorities.  They will need excellent experience of working positively with and influencing a wide network of relationships and partnerships within and beyond an organisation, whilst working closely with senior politicians to deliver corporate priorities. They’ll demonstrate the capacity and judgement to lead this vital service in one of the most diverse, most exciting and often challenging Districts in the UK.  The right person will make an impact across the District, maintaining and developing improved services whilst helping to create a better, safer, healthier and more inclusive Bradford.

About the Service

The service has circa 350 FTEs with team numbers as follows: Council Tax 104, Business Rates and Accounts collection 42, Payroll & Support 77 and Welfare 105.

Some recent focuses and successes have been:

  • A real focus on paying housing benefits promptly during the pandemic, consistently paying new claims within 12 days of receipt and correcting benefit, where we found it was wrong within 5 days of finding out about a change.
  • We supported our local businesses extensively through the pandemic with the various business grants schemes, paying over £225m to around 17,000 businesses in the District.
  • We continue to collect significant sums of money to support the Council to provide key services. Last year we collected around £700m off our residents and business, in Council Tax, Business Rates and other charges due to the Council. Many of our residents are in low-income households and balancing the need to support these families with the need to maintain income levels has always been a key priority.
  • We have had a real drive to make our service available digitally, whilst ensuring those without access are not excluded. Already 50,000 of our council taxpayers receive an ebill and our self-service portal and automated change of address facilities, mean our resources can be used more effectively, serving those that need extra support.