Director of People and Transformation


A summary of the key areas of focus for this role is:

  • Strategy (Organisational and People)
  • Workforce planning
  • Contributing to the senior leadership team (advice and executive development)
  • People analytics and insights
  • People risk management and compliance
  • Acting as an exemplar of best practice

Over the coming 12-18 months, our aim is for the People directorate is to build on its role as a business support function, so that we become a real strategic asset to Refuge – and our new Director of People and Transformation will be at the forefront of this journey. A key objective will be to revise and reshape our People Strategy in response to emerging themes in our new Organisational Strategy (to be overseen by our incoming Chief Executive), and you’ll also work across the organisation to develop our Equality, Diversity & Inclusion strategy.

Managing and developing a small, expert multifunctional team, you’ll ensure that the really essential people policies and processes are delivered well and consistently, and that they remain suitable in what is always a fast-changing environment. On occasion you’ll need to pick up some of this work too – whether it be recruitment, TUPE, training, employee relations or health & safety – and this opportunity to stay really close to service delivery will appeal to the right candidate.

At a strategic level, your influence across the charity (including the Board), will be extensive. We mark our fiftieth year in 2021, so – as we take stock of all we’ve achieved, and set out our high-level objectives for the coming years – it’s an incredibly exciting time to join the organisation. COVID’s short-term impact has been mixed – a desperately worrying rise in the incidence of domestic violence and abuse, yet with a consequent exponential rise in awareness that we’ve turned into solid support – but we believe that its long-term consequences may well pose structural challenges to our funders and commissioners. We have always responded creatively and imaginatively to resource constraints, and you’ll play an important part in our thinking about how services – and the skills needed to deliver them – might change and adapt in the future.

Candidates will need extensive and relevant experience – an understanding of the HR challenges of charities similar in size and structure to Refuge would be a distinct advantage. You will need a track record of not only designing, but also implementing sustainable change and improvement across an organisation, and an understanding of how the major changes driven by the pandemic have affected both people and processes. There’s a real desire to foster open, appreciative conversations about how we can always refine and improve the work we do, and you must be able to provide both the techniques – and sometimes the coaching – to support this at all levels.

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