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Service Manager- Public and Private Law - Chelmsford

Chelmsford, Essex, Southend and Thurrock
£52,906 - £54,845
Closing date
27 May 2024

Job Details

We are recruiting for the role of Service Manager in our Chelmsford team(s) covering Essex (North or South), Thurrock and Southend area.



We trust and empower colleagues to work in a hybrid way, providing the resources, equipment, and support, so that individually and collectively, we can be the voice of children and young people when the family court makes critical decisions about their futures.


While we are proud that Ofsted judged us to be ‘outstanding’ when they inspected us in early 2024, we haven’t come this far only to come this far. This outcome has energised us to just keep getting better at what we do for children and families.


Whilst this role is part of a team based from our office in Chelmsfordour teams work flexibly and remotely, your proximity to the office doesn’t always have to be a critical consideration.



We are a diverse, inclusive organisation that is a safe space for colleagues with shared aspects of identity and lived experience, which helps ensure we provide a service which promotes the diversity and uniqueness of children and families from all backgrounds. We especially welcome applications from people from diverse backgrounds as we strive to ensure our workforce reflects the diversity of the children and families we work with.


We provide extensive wellbeing support for colleagues, as well as excellent benefits, all of which we hope encourages you to join us.


Let us tell you a bit more about the role…


Being a Service Manager is very rewarding but as you would expect, challenging too. As well as being registered with Social Work England, you’ll be organised, resilient, empathetic, supportive and able to work independently.


In Work After First Hearing teams, Family Court Advisers - which is what we call our Social Workers - typically have a mixed Public and Private Law caseload. In Public Law this will include them telling the court about the child’s journey and experiences and explain their wishes and feelings, while also carrying out independent enquiries, scrutinising the work of the Local Authority and representing the child in court, alongside their appointed solicitor.


This is predominantly achieved through effective telephone interviews with applicants and respondents and by assessing information received from other agencies. They then collate this and succinctly and expertly communicate advice in the court through clear, evidence-based reports and representations, which will occasionally mean attending initial Court Hearings to ensure that children remain central to all decision making.



… and what we’re looking for.


We also think you for you to succeed and truly make a difference you should be someone who has;

  • Expert knowledge of children’s social work, including safeguarding, statutory and assessment frameworks
  • A track record of highly effective practice management or supervisory experience
  • Demonstrable experience of being a practice educator with the skills to continuously monitor, manage, develop and improve team and individual performance
  • Proven ability to establish strong and effective networks with other agencies.
  • Experience of leading individuals and teams through change


Next steps / timelines


If and when you are ready to apply, our application process is straightforward and quick to complete. You don’t need to complete your application in a single visit, you can start it and come back and amend your responses / update your CV, just make sure you come back before the closing date to submit.


Below we have given you an indication of a timetable we are hoping to work towards, although dates are subject to change.


Closing date:

Monday 27th May 2024

Initial Interview:

Tuesday 4th June 2024

Final Interview:

Tuesday 11th June 2024


We understand that starting a new role is a big decision, and you may require further information before applying.  You can find out more about the role in the Job Description and there is a wealth of information about Cafcass on our Cafcass Careers page.


If you wish to speak with a member of the team for more specific information you can either contact Narinder Kaur at from our HR Resourcing team if your query is HR related or to do with the recruitment process, or Clare Mayne at if your questions relate more to the role, providing your contact information and best times / methods to get hold of you.


Whilst we will always try and respond a.s.a.p. we wouldn’t want you to miss the closing date before we are able to. If this is the case, we recommend you apply and as part of your application you can ask questions, and this may allow us to contact you and provide you with the required information that will help you decide if you still wish to be considered.


Finally, in anticipation of your application being successful, you might want to read about the offer and pre-employment checks process. As part of your application you can highlight any concerns or questions about the pre-employment checks and we encourage all applicants to do so, safe in the knowledge such information will not be shared with individuals involved in the selection process.


Cafcass stands for Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service.

Cafcass represents children in family court cases in England. We put children’s needs, wishes and feelings first, making sure that children’s voices are heard at the heart of the family court setting, and that decisions are made in their best interests. Operating within the law set by Parliament (Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000) and under the rules and directions of the family courts, we are independent of the courts, social services, education and health authorities and all similar agencies.

Our duty is to safeguard and promote the welfare of children going through the family justice system. Our experienced Family Court Advisers may be asked by the court to work with families and then advise the court on what we consider to be the best interests of the children involved in three main areas:

  • divorce and separation, sometimes called ‘private law’, where parents or carers can’t agree on arrangements for their children
  • care proceedings, sometimes called ‘public law’, where social services have serious concerns about the safety or welfare of a child
  • adoption, which can be either public or private law.
Company info
Milburn Hill Road
University of Warwick Science Park

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