Hello, and thank you for taking the time out to find out more about the Finance Director role at the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham.
We have recently reviewed our finance department and now have a new team under the Finance Director; Group Manager for Service Finance, Head of Investment Management, Chief Accountant and Head of Assurance. The last two posts are currently vacant. This new team now brings together key strands that will help us to embed and support a more commercial approach that the Council is taking to address its financial challenges.
Over the last two years, the Council has undertaken an ambitious Transformation Programme to completely redesign the way it works to meet the needs of its residents and over the course of 2017-18 it moved towards becoming a New Kind of Council. This has meant creating new Service Delivery Blocks, wholly owned companies and embedding new ways of working.
Since 2010, we have delivered over £116.5m of savings but further challenges lie ahead. This is a young and rapidly changing part of London. Between 2001 and 2016 the population rose from 164,000 to 206,500 and is projected to rise to 275,000 by 2037. Within this overall increase is a picture of rapid movement of people. Between 2012 and 2014 (a mere two years) approximately one quarter of the population moved into the borough and the same proportion moved out. The population is also very young - the birth rate is the highest in London and we have the highest proportion of 0-16 years in the UK.
The Borough is facing great challenges – partly from the rate of change the community is experiencing but also long standing challenges stemming from the loss of local industries and their associated employment opportunities
The Council has developed a long-term vision for Barking and Dagenham that aims to harness the energy, creativity and ambition of its residents. This led to the development of the Borough Manifesto – bringing together the Council with its key partners and the contributions from a public consultation exercise which over 3,000 residents took part in. The manifesto “Barking and Dagenham Together” was published in November 2017 and sets out a long term vision for the next twenty years.
In line with the vision, we have agreed a growth based Financial Strategy which seeks to invest in the Borough’s future while making necessary savings to set a balanced budget. It is an innovative and challenging strategy.
Working for a London-based council will always be a hugely exciting challenge. But with tremendous growth on the horizon, we feel our borough can offer something more: the chance to direct and shape our progress, so that we can achieve our vision: to be London borough of opportunity. We have a very clear political mandate to build the right team to ensure we respond most effectively to the opportunities the borough faces.
We are a forward thinking, dynamic and an innovative Council that works at a pace. We are now looking for a Finance Director with the energy to help us achieve our ambitions and we look forward to receiving your application.
Claire Symonds, Chief Operating Officer