Head of Secretariat


17th January 2019

Department: Governance and Legal Services

Grade/ Salary: 8

Contract Type: Permanent

Hours: 35 per week (Full/ Part time)

Location: New Cross, London

Closing date for applications: 17 January 2019

Interviews: Week commencing 28 January 2019


Goldsmiths, University of London is a world-leading centre of educational excellence where ground-breaking research meets innovative teaching and thinking. We’re looking for inspiring and talented people to help build on our global reputation while also growing personally in a true learning organisation.

We are happy to supply information in alternative formats for disabled applicants. Please contact hr@gold.ac.uk to make your request.


Department of Governance and Legal Services

The Governance and Legal Services team is responsible for maintaining the systems which need to be in place to ensure that the College is effectively governed and operates in compliance with the regulatory systems and statutory duties by which it is bound. The team, supports Council, its associated committees and the Senior Management Team to ensure effective decision-making, and incorporates the following functions:

  • Corporate and academic governance
  • Council relations and management
  • Secretariat support services
  • Risk Management
  • Business Continuity and Emergency Planning
  • Statutory, regulatory and policy compliance
  • Information Governance, including Data Protection.
  • Provision of immigration advice to students and staff
  • Legal services
  • Academic appeals, student complaints and disciplinary processes.


Job description

Reporting to: Head of Governance and Legal Services



The Secretariat is a critical department of Goldsmiths’ central administration, contributing to the breadth of the College’s activities, providing assurance to key stakeholders and fulfilling its statutory and regulatory responsibilities.


The Secretariat is responsible for:

  • Supporting and advising Council (the College’s governing body) in the discharge of its statutory, regulatory and constitutional duties and the pursuit of its charitable objectives
  • Providing advice and support to the College on all matters pertaining to governance
  • Servicing Council and its committees and maintaining and enhancing the governance infrastructure of the College
  • Maintaining and enhancing the College’s constitutional documents
  • Safeguarding the College’s seal
  • Maintaining and advancing the College’s Risk Management Framework
  • Assisting to enhance internal control measures
  • Maintaining and advancing the College’s Compliance Framework
  • Business continuity and emergency planning
  • Insurance procurement.


Main duties:

  • Manage and lead a team of Governance Services support staff, including a Governance Manager to deliver a professional Secretariat service to the College and its stakeholders. The role holder will provide advice and guidance where necessary, ensuring deadlines are met and ensuring that work is accurate. The role holder will drive improved committee processes and documentation, providing more and better information about committees’ work.
  • Provide advice and guidance to both external stakeholders and members of the College on all governance related matters.
  • Develop and implement a refreshed Risk Management Framework for the College and work to cascade risk management through the organisation so that it is embedded in the business as usual activities of Goldsmiths.
  • Lead the College’s Business Continuity Planning and Emergency Planning activities, including helping departments develop and maintain their business impact assessment and running emergency planning exercises.
  • Support the procurement of insurance for the College and manage Goldsmiths’ relationship with underwriters and brokers.
  • Develop and implement a refreshed Compliance Framework, working with colleagues throughout the organisation to ensure that such policies as are required to meet statutory and regulatory responsibility are in place. It is envisaged that the Framework will result in the role holder obtaining assurance as to compliance on an annual basis in relation to matters such as data protection, UKVI, health and safety, bribery and corruption and Prevent.
  • You will be required to undertake any other duties as may reasonably be required.
  • Ensure that you are aware of and aligned with Goldsmiths’ Regulations, Strategy, and Objectives to work together to proactively advance Equality and Diversity.
  • At all times to help maintain a safe working environment by participating in training as necessary and following the Goldsmiths’ Health and Safety Codes of Practice and Policy.


Person Specification

Detailed below are the types of qualifications, experience, skills and knowledge which are required of the post holder. Selection will be made upon evidence of best-fit with this criteria.

The Essential criteria sections show the minimum essential requirements for the post, therefore if you cannot demonstrate in your application you meet the essential criteria categorised below, you will not be invited to interview.

The Desirable criteria sections show additional attributes which would enable the applicant to perform the role more effectively with little or no training.

The Category column indicates the method of assessment:

A = Application form C = Certificate

I = Interview R = Reference

T = Test / P = Presentation


Essential Criteria 1 – Qualifications

A bachelor’s degree or equivalent (A and C)


Desirable Criteria 1 – Qualifications

Recognised risk management and business continuity planning qualifications (A and C)


Essential Criteria 2 – Experience

Designing and implementing internal control frameworks (A, I and P)

Holding responsibility for risk management activities (A and I)

Of business continuity planning (A and I)

Providing administrative support and advice in relation to corporate governance arrangements (A and I)


Desirable Criteria 2 – Experience

Regulatory compliance environment (A and I)

Working with organizational constitutional documents (A and I)

Insurance cover procurement (A and I)

Managing relationship with internal auditors (A and I)


Essential Criteria 3 – Knowledge

Risk Management and Compliance Frameworks (A and I)

Implementing Business Continuity Framework and conducting Business Interruption Assessments

Key issues and risks faced by UK HEIs (A, I and P)

UK regulatory environment for HEIs (A and I)


Desirable Criteria 3 – Knowledge

Familiarity with key statutory duties of HEIs (A, I and P)

Familiarity with key Codes and Guides for governance of HEIs

Familiarity with primary corporate and charitable governance instruments for HEIs (I)


Essential Criteria 4 – Skills

Proficient with basic IT solutions (Excel and Word) (A)

Ability to impart technical and complex information to range of audiences (I, P)

To inform and persuade colleagues and networks (I)


Desirable Criteria 4 – Skills

Ability to form professional relationships with wide range of stakeholders (I)

Diplomacy and tact (A and I)

Please also note that where qualifications are required, employment is conditional on the verification of them. Qualifications (must be original documents) will be checked on the first day of appointment.

For more information about the role, please contact matthew.brooks@gold.ac.uk tel 020 77173313.


Summary of Benefits

If you choose to work with us, you’ll become part of a learning organisation that is committed to professional and personal development, with a comprehensive and innovative staff development programme.

You’ll also have access to frequent lunchtime and evening talks, seminars and performances, and annual performance and development reviews.

Our other benefits include:

  • Competitive salary
  • Working in Zone 2, with fantastic transport links and interest free travel to work loans
  • Excellent annual leave entitlement plus additional closure days at Christmas and Easter
  • Membership of USS or LPFA pension scheme, dependent upon grade
  • Access to exclusive discounts, including high street retailers
  • Maternity, paternity and adoption leave and pay and tax efficient childcare voucher scheme
  • Contractual sick pay provision
  • Free eye tests
  • Wellbeing initiatives including the Chaplaincy and Staff Choir * On-site dining facilities and gym * Access to University of London facilities such as Senate House Library


Further information

For more information about Goldsmiths, please visit: www.gold.ac.uk/about.

We can supply information in alternative formats for people with a visual impairment or dyslexia. For this please contact hr@gold.ac.uk,or visit www.gold.ac.uk/hr.

Thank you for your interest in working with us, we wish you all the best with your application.