Employment Adviser


20 – 30k GBP


North West

[Apply by]


Four Day Weeks



British Medical Association

Job title: Employment Adviser - 28 hours per week
Location: North West Centre
Job Type: All
Salary: £26.129.62 per annum
Close date: 16-09-2019
Department and directorate: Member Relations
Job family level: Grade 6
Reports to (job title and name): Employment Relations Delivery Manager
Direct reports (job title and name): None

The role: As an Employment Adviser, every day will be filled with a full and varied workload assisting and representing BMA members. Taking care of our existing members will be your primary role, you will manage your own portfolio of casework and you will also have opportunities to be involved in the recruitment of new members as we welcome innovative approaches to grow and retain our membership. The role is home based and you will need to live within the patch covered to attend meetings and hearings to support members in person. There are regular opportunities to meet and network with other homeworking colleagues.

The person: To join us you will need a sound current knowledge of employment law, significant experience of case management on employment issues gained through trade union, human resources or a legal background and extensive experience in advising/representing employees. Also, you will need to be a team player and be able to undertake work remotely from your home address within the patch. The need to demonstrate excellent IT skills is required and knowledge of the NHS structure and major NHS issues is an advantage. Access to a car and a current driving licence is essential due to the travel requirements.

Summary - purpose of the role

Describe as concisely as possible the overall purpose of the job and including the core duties/responsibilities required to be performed in the role (eg, to provide a full range of administrative support services to the department including x,y,z)

• To provide comprehensive employment law, industrial relations advice and support to members and to liaise with relevant internal and external departments, as appropriate.
• The post holder will also represent members in the workplace at hearings/meetings
• The post holder will have responsibility for the recruitment of medical students and other medical staff.
• This position is generally used as a development role, as experience of casework increases advisers can begin to take on more and more complex casework including representation work.

Advising and Recruiting Members

1. Provide advice, assistance and representation to members on employment and other work related issues. Representation includes meetings related to formal disciplinary, appeals, grievances and sickness absence return to work interviews.with EA preparing for and presenting case on behalf of member to management, cross examining witnesses and making final submissions.
2. Undertake recruitment and retention activities by representing the Association at junior doctor meetings, facilitating and participating in seminars and other core programme/recruitment activities and producing newsletters.
3. Act as the principal point of contact with medical students and officials of designated University Medical Schools. Prepare and ensure the delivery of an effective programme to maximise medical student recruitment.
4. Maintain effective relationships with key personnel in Trusts and Medical Students including student representatives.
5. Prepare and progress claims with employers by telephone , in writing and by direct representation
6. Provide expert advice on contractual documentation and Terms and Conditions of Service for employed doctors.
7. Provide support to BMA regional craft committees, attending meetings as required.
8. Develop areas of specialist interest and work within agreed team to develop and update guidance as necessary.
9. Attend Member Relations Liaison Groups, Working Parties and other groups as deemed necessary and feedback key information to colleagues

Skill (level and breadth of application)

What relevant experience is necessary to undertake this role? What specialist, technical or professional qualifications are required to be able to perform the job?

How far does the role extend out across the organisation, eg confined to own team, involves co ordination with another department or requires regular negotiation with many other parts of the organisation. Why is this necessary? Describe the range of issues that are involved in this, eg resolving people’s IT problems, collecting information on key research items or advising members on a particular issue.

• Graduate or equivalent qualification with previous experience in areas covered by the role. Ideally from within a trade union or employment related (legal practice, HR or Medical Staffing
• Up to date in-depth knowledge of employment legislation, industrial relations and human resource policy and procedures
• Computer literacy and keyboard skills.
• Good working knowledge and understanding of the NHS structure and major NHS issues, together with an understanding of the role and function of the BMA.
• Requires sound and extensive analytical skills when dealing with case work and queries
• Ability to prioritise and manage own work effectively with a high case load
• Excellent planning and organisational skills required
• Predominately works without direct supervision and has flexibility to work on own initiative dealing with telephone and other methods of making enquiries including first line industrial relations and human resource queries.
• Organises and prioritises own workload in consultation with the Industrial Relations Officer.
• Responsible for aspects of delivering Student recruitment defined in the core programme
• It is essential that a good working knowledge of employment law/terms and conditions of service is maintained, taking into account frequently occurring changes, so that advice given to Members is correct and appropriate at all times.
• Have access to a car and have a current full EC or EEA driving licence

Intellectual demands (complexity and challenge)

What sorts of problems, situations or issues are typically dealt with? Give any illustrative examples. How are the problems, situations or issues dealt with (eg undertaking original research and analysis or seeking specialist advice)?

To what extent are standard procedures and processes followed when undertaking typical tasks, and how is personal initiative used when solving problems? To what extent is creativity used in solving the problems (eg adopting different approaches, trying things that have not been done before within the organisation or improving/changing previous approaches).

Whilst the EA role is supported by a range of guidance and procedural documents he/she;

• Has freedom of action within the broad constraints of case handling under the supervision of the Employment Relations Delivery Manager (ERDM).
- Decisions taken and advice given have a high impact on Members and credibility of the Association and therefore must be correct
• Will seek guidance from the ERDM on major decisions
• Members can be emotional, demanding and difficult. The EA has to work with the member to understand the issue, manage the emotion, their expectation and guide them through the internal procedural process in order to ensure their legal rights are protected.
• Complex, extensive and detailed information often needs to be analysed in order to ensure that the adviser has an accurate understanding of the issue to be addressed.

Judgement (independence and and level impact limitations)

What are the typical decisions that are made in the job without reference to any higher authority? What informs/constrains the decisions (eg expenditure limits, have to follow clearly laid down procedures or working within broad objectives). What influence upon policy, procedures or resources is there (eg giving advice to others)?

Who (or what) is next to be affected by the decisions that are made – for example, supervisor sees them before they leave the team or the whole department sees and has to respond to the change that is made. Give typical example(s) of the consequences of the decisions (eg what impact does the decision-making have on the performance of the team/section/department/organisation)?

• Needs to be aware of budgets and to work within these when organising events and activities (e.g. student recruitment). The EA submits budget proposal for Med School to the Head of Member Employment Relations and works within agreed expenditure levels
• Required to recognise and adhere to specific critical timescales as part of the representational/case handling process arising from Employment law requirements/local employer procedures.
• Has freedom of action within the broad constraints of case handling under the supervision of the ERDM.
• Decisions taken and advice given have a high impact on Members and credibility of the Association and therefore must be correct
• Will seek guidance from the ERDM on very major decisions

Use of resources (supervision of resources and significance)

What responsibility is there for managing people, equipment, budgets, resources, customer’s welfare or confidential information? If this is a staff management role describe what is involved, eg staff reporting, staff development, appraisal, leading a department or the allocation of work.

How does the role fit within the organisation, eg support role, team member, team leader, specialist policy adviser, or leading major areas of core business?

• Manages budget for Medical School within agreed limits
• Is responsible for supporting the induction of new advisers both within team and wider Member Relations group
• Key team member
• Participates in appraisal process and is subject to review meetings with line manager (weekly telecom, monthly face to face)

Communication (level, internal and external demands and significance)

What people are typically contacted (regardless of the medium) inside the Association, eg immediate colleagues, senior managers or administrators? Committee members are the only members classed as internal communication. Normal non-committee membership and doctors are external (see below)

Who is in regularly contact with the role holder outside of the Association, eg members who are not committee members, suppliers, members of the public? Approximately what percentage of the time is spent on external communications? What is the purpose of these contacts, eg conveying information, gathering data?

• Must develop and maintain good relationships with members (committee and individual), employers, LMCs and other BMA staff.
• Majority of time spent on external communications with members. This is a key part of case work and recruitment/retention role.

Physical demands and coordination (physical effort and mental strain)

Are there any unusual physical or mental demands of the role; for example, lifting heavy objects, standing for long periods, using VDUs extensively or high levels of concentration?

• There will be normal physical demands typically associated with an office environment and there will be limited requirement to engage in lifting/carrying or other exertion. There will be a requirement to use office technology and systems as provided or recommended by the BMA.
• The role holder will be required to travel in order to carry out the role, in line with Member Relations & BMA policy. Attendance at meetings at a variety of locations (e.g. hospitals & trusts) will be required.
• There are internal health & safety policies and guidance to be followed and adhered by the role holder and their direct reports (if line management is part of the role). These policies apply both in the normal office environment and also when visiting other locations in the execution of duties.

Working conditions and emotional demands

What are the environmental conditions in which the work is conducted, the social and emotional demands faced by the role and the pressures resulting from these?

• The job is typically conducted either in a normal office (including home office) environment or external location as required to carry out the role and is not considered to be exposed to hazardous conditions or extreme anti-social behaviour (which should be reported through the appropriate internal channels). There may be times where the role holder is involved with a case that involves an emotionally charged situation. This can be raised through the appropriate internal channels to ensure support is given to the role holder as required.

Values and behaviours

The post-holder is expected to execute their role in line with our five organizational values. These are currently being translated into behavioural indicators that will form part of our new performance management process.

The following examples illustrate how we are using our values to inform how we act:

We are leaders because:
– We strive to always improve
– We take responsibility for our actions
– We collaborate with each other and work as one BMA for the good of our members
– We are proactive and prepared to guide our members and each other

We are experts because:
– We understand our members
– We draw on our collective experience and knowledge to solve problems
– We use our insights and research to make decisions
– We provide accurate, credible, relevant and engaging information
– We recognise our strengths and act upon them

We are committed because:
– We listen to our members and put them at the heart of everything we do
– We are respectful, inclusive, open and honest with our members and each other
– We approach everything we do with confidence and sensitivity

We are reliable because:
– We deliver on what we say we will do
– We are accessible and approachable
– We build trust by being consistent and supportive
– We are positive and decisive whatever the situation

We are challenging because:
– We fight, ethically and fearlessly, for the interests of all our members
– We work as a brave, assertive and effective champion for high quality health services and the advancement of the profession

To apply for this role please press the apply button below.