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Senior Accessibility and Digital Inclusion Consultant

Home Office UK

Croydon, Manchester, Sheffield,UK

This job is expired.

This key role requires an outstanding individual to ensure our approach to access needs and digital inclusion is coherent, professionally managed and of high quality.

You will be a vocal advocate for meeting all users’ needs and experienced at dealing with stakeholders at all levels to achieve it.

You’ll help teams, portfolios and programmes to meet:

Government Service Standard
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)
Equality Act 2010
The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018

You’ll help to ensure that public services and internal systems cater for the needs of all users, by being:

Holistically accessible to people with access needs
Completable by those who are digitally excluded due to skills, confidence, willingness, access or lack of resources

You’ll be very comfortable engaging with teams, strategic and operational leaders and suppliers to influence decisions based on data and user research. You’ll provide high level advice and get involved in assurance activity with delivery teams at all stages of design and development, before and after services are released.

You’ll be able to explain and demonstrate accessibility and inclusion issues and you’ll be eager to transfer your expertise appropriately across the range of digital professionals.

This role is based in the Enablers Portfolio. We predominantly provide products and services for users who work in the Home Office and our Arm’s Length Bodies (ALB’s). We also have external users who engage with our services in the course of their work. Much of our software is provided by suppliers, ranging from large multi-national corporations to small, specialist organisations. Collaborating with and influencing our suppliers is a key part of this role.

We are looking for people who are collaborative, inclusive, open to their work being critiqued and who are empathetic towards their colleagues and users. A healthy balance of determinism and pragmatism will be needed on our complex services and products.

If you want to join us in keeping the UK safe and secure and ensuring that our services for migrants and asylum seekers are easier and simpler to use, apply now.

The first duty of the government is to keep citizens safe and the country secure. The Home Office has been at the front line of this effort since 1782. As such, we play a fundamental role in maintaining the security and economic prosperity of the UK.

The Home Office leads on immigration and passports, refugee protection, counter-terrorism, policing, fire services, and crime and drugs policy.

Digital Data and Technology (DDaT) enables the Home Office to keep the UK safe and secure. We design and build the services that help people apply for visas or passports; support policing and counter-terrorism operations; and protect the UK’s borders.

This is an exciting time to be at the Home Office. You will have a chance to shape the future and support our mission to deliver exceptional public services that work for everyone.

Our work is guided by these principles:

We put user needs first
We value delivery and outcomes over process
We work in the open

Our flexible working policy ensures a healthy work-life balance. We also nurture talent and offer a broad range of learning and development opportunities that will help you flourish in your role.

We work hard to maintain a positive working culture and are committed to helping you fulfil your potential. We value diversity and provide an open, inclusive and supportive environment to help you do your best work.

You can keep up-to-date with our work on the [Home Office DDaT blog.](https://hodigital.blog.gov.uk/)
Job description

Responsibilities

Your main day to day responsibilities will be:

Maintaining and disseminating best practice based on WCAG standards that make our services and internal systems usable by all, by default
Working closely with suppliers, challenging their approach to accessibility and holding them accountable for legislative compliance and user’s experience
Assessing and reporting the risks raised by accessibility and inclusion issues with reference to policies, standards, rulings and legislation
Ensuring these risks are prioritised and actioned by internal teams and suppliers
Implementing mechanisms to ensure quality, consistency, effectiveness and efficiency of reviews and audits
Leading assurance activity such as holistic reviews, WCAG audits and assistive technology testing – providing support where needed for complex issues or situations
Providing team members with professional advice and performance feedback, supporting their learning and development goals
Supporting our ‘accessibility advocates’ network by giving direction to their work and providing them with training and upskilling
Providing consultancy to delivery teams and stakeholders on achieving channel shift goals whilst meeting diverse users’ needs with digital interfaces, offline channels and support models

Other day to day activities

You will also be expected to carry out the following day to day activities:

Creating and disseminating guidance plus insights from qualitative and quantitative research to the various DDaT professions
Maintaining our assurance approach to support the Government Service Standard with regards to accessibility and digital inclusion
Contributing to, supporting and sharing the work of the accessibility and inclusion communities across government
Supporting the compilation and publication of accessibility statements in order to meet compliance with accessibility regulations
Building capability by developing and delivering training on a range of accessibility and digital inclusion topics, including supporting the training team to deliver materials that support assistive technology users to work effectively

Person specification

Essential Skills

You will have a demonstrable passion for user-centred design, with extensive experience of:

Assessing and analysing a situation to make informed,
Using expert knowledge to understand and explain the ways people who have access needs or a digitally excluded need to use services and things that help/hinder them
Creating and executing plans for auditing and testing services for compliance with accessibility standards using manual testing, automated
Liaising with delivery teams from the start of projects, to understand their circumstances, then pragmatically advising on appropriate steps to take and any consequences of not meeting equality expectations

Our skills align with the cross gov DDaT Capability Framework

Digital, Data and Technology Profession Capability Framework - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Candidates reaching the required standard and attending the interview, will be assessed using technical and experience-based questions. Technical level definitions can be found via www.gov.uk/guidance/user-researcher.
Technical skills

We'll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

Communicating Information
Consultancy
Governance and Assurance (accessibility)
Leadership and Guidance
Technical Understanding (accessibility)
Testing
User Focus

Benefits
Alongside your salary of £57,000, Home Office contributes £15,390 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.

Alongside your salary of £57,000, Home Office contributes £15,390 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.

You will be set-up for hybrid working from day one
We provide you with an up-to-date Macbook, Office 365 licence as well as access to industry standard tools. We work a minimum of 40% of our week in an office (two-days if you are full-time, pro-rata for part-timers) and remote the rest of the week.
You can help shape how we do design and research
We support our community to become practice leads to pursue work which provides value to the wider community. We currently have practice leads in diversity and inclusion, sustainability, design ethics, and workshopping.
Lots of ways to learn and develop
In addition to our online training catalogue with O’Reilly and connections with professional training providers, we also offer peer learning, a comprehensive induction, and time to volunteer or do charity work.
Flexible working options to enable you to achieve the work life balance that right for you including part-time, job share, term time only, compressed hours and flexi time. This can be discussed at the offer stage if you are interested in this and is dependent on the role.

You will also have access to the same benefits available to all civil servants in the Home Office:

An in-year performance bonus scheme, behaviours recognition and reward scheme.
A Civil Service pension with employer contribution rates of between 26.6% and 30.3%, depending upon salary.
25 days annual leave on appointment, increasing by 1 day every year to a maximum of 30 days after five years’ service. In addition, all staff receive 8 days public holidays and 1 day for the King’s Birthday.
Flexible working options to enable you to achieve the work life balance that right for you including part-time, flexi time and job sharing.
A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity.
Season ticket loans and rental deposit loans.
Cycle to work and payroll giving.
Employee discounts - including a huge number of retailers, Microsoft Home Use programme and gym membership.
A variety of staff recognition schemes including thank you vouchers.
Health and wellbeing initiatives including monthly mindfulness sessions.
Staff support networks.
Maternity, adoption or shared parental leave of up to 26 weeks full pay followed by 13 weeks of statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid.
Maternity and adoption support leave (paternity leave) of 2 weeks full pay.
Up to five days paid leave for volunteering.
Study leave and support for studying for a qualification or other accredited development relevant to your role.

You can find more information at Benefits - Home Office Careers.
Things you need to know
Selection process details
This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Experience and Technical skills.

As part of the application process you will be asked to complete a CV and Personal Statement (Max 1000 Word Limit).

Further details around what this will entail are listed on the application form.

Please note your Personal Statement should be aligned to give evidence of how you meet the essential criteria listed on the Job Specification.

The sift will be assessed on the CV and Personal Statement.

Candidates shortlisted will be invited to an interview. At the beginning you will receive a task and have 45 minutes to prepare. You will be asked to conduct a 10-minute presentation based on your task and then asked questions that explore your technical skills and experience.

Sift and interview dates

The sift will commence from week commencing 6th November 2023.

Interviews are expected to take place from week commencing 27th November.

Interviews will be carried out via video. Candidates will be required to have access to:

A laptop (personal or work) with a working webcam
Good internet connection
Microsoft Teams

We will try to meet the dates set out in the advert. There may be occasions when these dates will change. You will be provided with sufficient notice of the confirmed dates.

Due to time constraints, we may not be able to offer alternative interview date(s). It is therefore expected that candidates who are successful at sift stage will make themselves available during the above time frame given.

Further Information

Please read the essential skills for this position carefully. We will only consider those who meet the listed requirement.

If you have previously made an unsuccessful application for a role with the same essential skills and are not able to demonstrate how you have developed these skills since your last application, please reconsider applying as your application is unlikely to be successful.

UK residency and security requirements    

For meaningful checks to be carried out, individuals need to have lived in the UK for a sufficient period of time to enable appropriate checks to be carried out and produce a result which provides the required level of assurance. You should normally have been resident in the United Kingdom for the last 3 years if the role requires CTC clearance, 5 years for SC clearance and 10 years for DV.

You need to have lived in the UK for the past 5 years. This is because this post requires the successful candidate to have Security Check (SC) clearance and individuals need to have lived in the UK for a sufficient period of time to enable appropriate checks to be carried out and produce a result which provides the required level of assurance. These checks will only take place after the job offer has been accepted.

Reserve list

A reserve list of successful candidates will be kept for 12 months. Should another role become available within that period you may be offered this position.

Visa sponsorship

We are unable to sponsor any individuals via Skilled Worker Sponsorship / Tier 2 (General) work visas as we do not hold a UK Visa & Immigration (UKVI) Skilled Worker License.

This post is eligible for a DDaT Recruitment Retention Allowance. Successful candidate with exceptional skills and experience may apply for a Recruitment and Retention Allowance up to a maximum of £6,000. This allowance is subject to an initial review within six months of taking up the post and thereafter an annual review in line with the departmental priorities and could be reduced or withdrawn at any time.

This role can be based in any of the advertised location/regions, with an occasional travel required. You will be located in a regional office and under Home Office hybrid working practices you will be required to attend a Home Office workplace on an average of 40% of your working hours. Successful candidates will be able to obtain further information from their line manager.

Job offers to this post are made on the basis of merit. We often have similar roles available at different grades. If a candidate is suitable for a similar role or a lower grade than they have applied for, we may offer the candidate that role without the need to go through a further selection process providing the role has the same behaviours and essential skills.

Working at the Home Office

Every day, Home Office civil servants do brilliant work to develop and deliver policies and services that affect the lives of people across the country and beyond. To do this effectively and fairly, the Home Office is committed to representing modern Britain in all its diversity, and creating a welcoming, inclusive workplace where all our people are able to bring their whole selves to work and perform at their best.

We are flexible, skilled, professional and diverse. We work to recruit and retain disabled staff and area Disability Confident Leader. We are proud to be one of the most ethnically diverse departments in the civil service. We are Stonewall top 100 Workplace Equality Employer and a Social Mobility Foundation top 75 employer.

New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening, subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant's details held on the IFD will be refused employment.

For further information please see the attached notes for candidates which must be read before making an application.

Existing Civil Servants should note that some of the Home Office terms and conditions of employment have changed. It is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure they are aware of the Terms and Conditions they will adopt should they be successful in application and should refer to the notes for candidates for further details.

Transfer Terms: Voluntary.

If you are invited to an interview you will be required to bring a range of documentation for the purposes of establishing identity and to aid any pre-employment checks.

Please see the attached list of Home Office acceptable ID documents.

Any move to the Home Office from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at www.childcarechoices.gov.uk

Reasonable Adjustments

If a person with disabilities is at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:

• Contact Government Recruitment Service via HOrecruitment.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs

• Complete the “Assistance Required” section in the “Additional Requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you are deaf, a language service professional

If you are experiencing accessibility problems with any attachments on this advert, please contact the email address in the ‘Contact point for applicants’ section.

Salary Range: €57000 - €67100

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