Main purpose of job:
The British High Commission to South Africa oversees the UK Government’s operations in South Africa across the following locations:
- The British High Commission Pretoria (BHC)
- The UK Visas & Immigration Office in Pretoria
- The UK Department for International Trade in Johannesburg (DIT)
- The British Consulate General Cape Town
Its Corporate Services Team, based largely in Pretoria with some staff in the locations above, is responsible for delivering corporate services to support the work of the Mission.
The Estates Officer will work under the supervision of the Estates Manager and will help manage the British High Commission Offices and the properties where British Diplomats reside. The position acts as a facilities manager for a number of these properties, helping to ensure the effective management of the Estate whilst also demonstrating professionalism and delivering high quality customer service.
The jobholder will need to be willing to work flexibly to help others, take on different tasks where work pressures are heavy, cover leave absences and deal with emergencies. This can involve calls and work dealing with customers and contractors in the evenings and weekends, for which a mobile phone is provided and a financial allowance is paid on top of the salary.
Whilst the role is based in Pretoria, the jobholder can be expected to undertake periodic visits to the other Offices in South Africa, as listed above.
The Estates Officer plays a crucial role in:
- Preparing our residential properties for occupation by our staff, which requires forward-planning, attention to detail and strong organisational and time-management skills
- Dealing with on-going maintenance issues from the whole estate, requiring skills in administration, IT and multi-tasking numerous concurrent activities
- Providing a professional service to our office staff and residents, for which a thorough understanding of customer service and good communication skills are essential
- Managing the work of an in-house maintenance team and liaising with external suppliers of services
The role is ideally suited to an individual who:
- Enjoys staff management duties and wants to develop management experience
- Has strong administrative skills, and wants to develop experience in finance, requisitioning and running projects
- Is a good communicator and people-person, who takes pride in providing a good service, and enjoys working in a busy team
- Experience of facilities management / property management is a bonus.
Roles and responsibilities / what will the jobholder be expected to achieve:
The below roles and responsibilities are general guidelines. They are not limited to the detail below and are subject to change from time to time with prior consultation if circumstances, structures, work pressures or priorities alter, or if absences need covering.
- Organising the tasks required in managing a portfolio of residential accommodation; includes site visits, managing contractors, tracking progress and record keeping.
- Organising the workload of (2) maintenance staff, for facilities management activites on the estate. Includes weekly planning / scheduling of work and ensuring staff have the correct information / tools for the works required.
- Raising requisitions orders and receipting funds in Prism, dealing with finanical issues and budgeting requirements
- Conducting ‘March In’ (assignment of accommodation) and ‘March Out’ (taking back possession of a property), ensuring all steps are completed to FCO standards, complying with Health & Safety requirements, and maintaining good customer service with our occupiers
- Monitoring maintenance requests on a daily basis, ensuring that issues are addressed in line with Corporate Service Charter deadlines, and communicating with occupants and maintenance staff.
- Estates administration duties, including internal record-keeping on properties, suppliers, contractors, budget issues and asset registers. Management of property information such float lists, information sheets, inventories and property photos
- Regular property visits, using experience / knowledge to observe and highlight any estate concerns as well as accompanying suppliers / contractors, for inspections and maintenance such as generator issues, electrical, plumbing or structural issues. Additionally, to observe and highlight any property concerns to the Estate Manager.
- Assist the Health & Safety Compliance Officer to ensure properties fulfil FCO Guidelines for safe occupation.
- Provide cover for the Maintenance and Stores Officers, during periods of annual leave.
- Other ad hoc tasks as directed by managers
Resources managed (staff and expenditure):
Line Management of 2 Maintenance officers
- Strong computer literacy
- Multi-tasking, communication and time-management skills
- Valid Driver’s licence
- Administration experience
- Experience in property management / facilities management
- Line management experience
The FCO aims to provide all staff with equality of opportunity in all aspects of their work and draw on the talent of all of staff from diverse backgrounds in the UK and overseas. We place a strong emphasis on learning and development. You will be encouraged to undertake developmental training and get involved in corporate activities. This role provides an excellent opportunity to build up programme knowledge and expertise and gain exposure to working across government. You will have access to existing and new Project & Programme Management L&D as well as wider job-relevant L&D and support for your own personal development.
The British High Commission pays in full for the Key Care Plus option on Discovery Health for staff including spouses/partners and dependants
- Once you have successfully completed your probation the British High Commission will contribute 9% of your monthly salary to a Provident Fund
- Annual leave entitlement of 25 days
- Working hours per week of 36.5
- Employees recruited locally by the British High Commission in Pretoria are subject to the Terms and Conditions of Service according to local employment law in South Africa
- All applicants must be legally able to work in the country of application with the correct visa/status or work permit
- Employees who are not eligible to pay local income tax: e.g. certain third-country nationals and spouses/partners of UK diplomats will have their salaries abated by an equivalent amount
- Reference and security clearances checks will be conducted
- If you don’t already hold a valid SA Police Clearance Certificate, we recommend that you apply for the certificate at the time of your application
- Any questions you may have about this position will be answered during the interview, should you be invited
- Information about the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Competency Framework can be found on this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/civil-service-competency-framework
- Complete the application form in full as the information provided will be used for screening purposes
- Check your application before you submit, as you will not be able to make any changes once submitted
- The British High Commission will never ask you to pay a fee or money to apply for a position