44676 - Prison Group Director - HMPPS in Wales

12 Months
Grade 6
Band 12
Full Time, Part Time, Part Time/Job Share, Flexible Working, Other
Senior Leadership

We welcome and encourage applications from everyone, including groups currently underrepresented in our workforce and pride ourselves as being an employer of choice. To find out more about how we champion diversity and inclusion in the workplace, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/about/equality-and-diversity

Rydym yn croesawu ac yn annog ceisiadau gan bawb, yn cynnwys grwpiau sydd wedi’u tangynrychioli yn ein gweithlu ar hyn o bryd, ac rydym yn ymfalchïo mewn bod yn gyflogwr o safon uchel sy’n denu llawer o ymgeiswyr. Ewch i https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/about/equality-and-diversity gael rhagor o wybodaeth am sut rydym yn hyrwyddo amrywiaeth a chynhwysiant yn y gweithle.

This is an exciting and challenging opportunity to become a senior leader within Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service and across the wider justice system in Wales.

You will be providing strategic leadership for the whole of the prison system within Wales and work as part of the HMPPS in Wales Executive Team alongside the Executive Director, Probation Director and Director for Strategic Support, Administration and Assurance, contributing to the overall strategy for HMPPS in Wales and the delivery of agency priorities.

 You will promote a culture of collaboration and common purpose, seeking common solutions to shared problems and challenging behaviours that create barriers. You will work in partnership with colleagues across HMPPS, the wider Ministry of Justice, UK and Welsh Government and other strategic partners such Police and Crime Commissioners, Local Criminal Justice Boards and commissioners of health services.

You will have a proven track record of senior leadership and an ability to build strong and effective partnerships with complex stakeholder groups.

Overview of the job

These Group Director roles are new, senior roles critical to stability and delivery across HMPPS in England and Wales.

Group Directors will be responsible for the delivery and strategic development of the Area  in their command.

This is an exciting and challenging opportunity to ensure the successful and safe delivery of objectives across HM Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS).

HMPPS is responsible for running prisons and probation services across England and Wales with over 42,000 directly employed staff and contractors and a wide range of private and third sector partners.

Like all organisations we are constantly seeking to be more effective and efficient, improving performance and ‘working smarter’.  This is a fantastic opportunity for the right people to drive innovation and change that can really make a positive difference for our society.

Outstanding leaders with a strong track record of delivery in a challenging environment, setting strategic direction and leading large and dispersed teams across several business units, and manage a large delegated budget.

A dynamic, challenging and rewarding role where your contribution will make a real difference.

Reporting to an Executive Director.


The post holders will work collegiately as part of their Executive Director’s senior team. They will work together to manage competing pressures and risks in order to maintain delivery of service and Ministerial confidence, as well as contributing to the overall strategy within HMPPS.

Post holders will drive the performance improvement of key organisational objectives, through supporting, coaching and developing senior management teams.  They will promote a leadership culture which is rehabilitative to deliver objectives that realise the Secretary of State’s vision for prison safety and reform.

There is a strong partnership working element to this role, in working across the HMPPS, the wider Ministry of Justice, and with other services, agencies and third sector providers, to build and maintain effective ‘joined-up’ services for the public.  This includes integrated services across custody and community and effective working between public and private sectors.

Post holders will have strong leadership and people management skills with the ability to influence, drive change and improve results whilst engaging and empowering our people. They will also have strong analytical and financial skills.

Post holders will need to contribute to effective relationships within HMPPS and with other senior colleagues across the Department, with a need to demonstrate political awareness at all times.

This is a senior management post with line management responsibilities.

Responsibilities, Activities and Duties

The job holder will be required to carry out the following responsibilities, activities and duties:

·         Accountability for performance and use of resources across the organisation for which they are responsible, ensuring that their area of work is effectively delivering and driving improvement to meet the expected outcomes, and holding Senior Leaders to account.

·         Providing strong and effective change leadership, ensuring in particular the effective implementation of programmes which support a rehabilitative culture and lead to improved organisational performance.

·         Ensuring that areas for which they are responsible are meeting delivery requirements, complying with national policy and progressing strategic priorities.  

·         Supporting and coaching senior leaders to ensure that they have the skills and knowledge to run safe, decent, secure and rehabilitative prisons and to manage their staff effectively; and improve staff engagement and demonstrate commitment to equality and inclusion through their leadership.

·         Working effectively in collaboration within their Group Directorate/Group, and as part of the wider HMPPS structures, to effectively deploy resources; share best practice to ensure stability across the system and improve progression; create a learning culture; and deliver the Group Directorate’s objectives.

·         Developing strategic relationships with key partners and stakeholders across MoJ, Government and other agencies and services, particularly relevant community partners, to ensure our business and strategic objectives are achieved.

·         Maintaining a broad and thorough understanding of the HMPPS’s business, including Ministerial priorities, with particular focus on ensuring that policy and reform are effectively delivered at local levels.

·         Ensuring effective financial management to operate within the allocated budget and with financial propriety. Seeking appropriate sources of funding to support joint interest work with our strategic partners. 

·         Promoting continuous professional development and professional skills across HMPPS, MOJ and the wider Civil Service. 

·         Champion engagement, equality and inclusion through leadership of their Group Directorate/Group.

The duties/responsibilities listed above describe the post as it is at present and is not intended to be exhaustive. The job holder is expected to accept reasonable alterations and additional tasks of a similar level that may be necessary. Significant adjustments may require re-examination under the Job Evaluation Scheme and shall be discussed in the first instance with the job holder.


·         Leadership

·         Seeing the Big Picture

·         Changing and Improving

·         Communicating and Influencing

·         Working Together

Essential Experience

·         A proven track record of experience in a challenging environment/system, working effectively in this complex and high-pressured environment.

·         A proven record of leadership, inspiring staff, successfully engaging senior leaders, leading change and performance improvement and building capability to deliver business objectives.

·         Evidence of strategic thinking and effective problem solving, developing innovative delivery options that meet strategic objectives whilst being rooted in an understanding of financial and implementation practicalities. 

·         Evidence of building strong and effective partnerships, across Government and with other parts of the public sector, operational partners and external stakeholders to advance business objectives.

Technical Requirements


·         Analytical Skills

·         Verbal and Written Communication Skills

The job holder must be able to fulfil all spoken aspects of the role with confidence in English or (when specified in Wales) Welsh.
Excess Fares & Relocation / PIT Terms

If you are successful at sift, ahead of your interview you will sent a link to access a case study that tests your ability and experience. The case study will be sent with a candidate guide and will pose a problem that is neutral, not disadvantaging those who may not come from a prison setting.

You will also be asked to deliver a short presentation on:

What do you think the 3 main challenges of the role in the next year will be and how will you apply your experience to meet them?

Working Arrangements & Further Information

Some of MoJ’s, including HMPPS, terms and conditions of service are changing as part of Civil Service reform. The changes will apply to staff joining MoJ who are new to the Civil Service. Staff joining MoJ from other civil service employers will transfer onto the new MoJ terms if they are already on 'modernised' terms in their current post or onto 'unmodernised' MoJ terms if they are on 'unmodernised' terms at their current post. Details will be available if an offer is made.

Standard working hours for this post are 37 hours per week excluding breaks which are unpaid.

If you are a current NPS employee, this vacancy may be available on a Loan basis for up to 2 years. Applications are invited from suitable qualified staff.

The Loan/Secondment is subject to the approval of the selected candidate's Business Unit, which should be obtained before confirmation of appointment.


Annual Leave

-The holiday year runs from 1 March. If you work a non standard work pattern your leave entitlement may be expressed in either hours or days as appropriate. Leave entitlement is calculated on a pro-rata basis and you will be advised of your actual entitlement on appointment. If you were appointed internally and your leave was previously calculated in days, this will continue to be the case.

Bank, Public and Privilege Holidays

You are entitled to 9 days (66 hours 36 minutes) in recognition of bank, public and privilege holidays. These hours are added to your annual leave allowance. There is a requirement to work some public and bank holidays subject to your shift pattern and the operational needs of the establishment


-The Civil Service offers a choice of two pension schemes, giving you the flexibility to choose the pension that suits you best.

Work Life Balance

-HM Prison & Probation Service (HMPPS) is keen to encourage alternative working arrangements. Work life balance provides greater opportunities for staff to work more flexibly wherever managers and establishments can accommodate requests to do so. HMPPS offers flexible working subject to completion of a satisfactory probationary period and NVQ

Season Ticket Advance

-After two months’ service, you’ll be eligible to apply for a season ticket advance to purchase a quarterly or longer-period season ticket for travel between home and your place of work

Childcare Vouchers

For any moves across the Civil Service may have implications on your ability to carry on claiming childcare vouchers


-HMPPS is committed to staff development and offers a range of training and development opportunities, including areas such as Equality and Diversity, Dealing with Challenging Behaviour, Suicide Prevention and Anti Bullying Programmes

-There are opportunities to access promotion programmes and HMPPS provide a variety of training appropriate to individual posts

-All staff receive security and diversity training and an individual induction programme into their new roles


-All candidates are subject to security and identity checks prior to taking up post

-All external candidates are subject to 6 months probation. Internal candidates are subject to probation if they have not already served a probationary period within HMPPS

-All staff are required to declare whether they are a member of a group or organisation which HMPPS considers to be racist

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity.

There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Interview dates TBC but are likely to be held week commencing 4th and 11th July 2021

21/06/2021, 23:55 hours.

If you require any assistance please call 0845 241 5358 (Monday to Friday 8am - 6pm) or e mail Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com. Please quote the job reference.

Alternatively please contact the Head of HR, Laura Cooke on 07886937982.

Success Profiles will enable a fairer and more inclusive method of recruitment by enabling us to assess the range of experiences, abilities, strengths, behaviours and technical/professional skills required for different roles. This flexible approach to recruitment focuses more on finding the right candidate for the specific role. To find out more about Success Profiles to support your application please click here for further guidance.

if you feel that your application has not been treated in line with the Civil Service Recruitment Principles, please contact SSCL (Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com) in the first instance

We have provided detail of the assessment stages and areas being assessed to help you prepare for completing your application form, and to advise of what will be assessed following this, if you successfully pass the application stage.

Application form stage assessments

Statement of Suitability - 1250 word limit

Interview stage assessments

There is 1 interview stage for this vacancy.
Changing and Improving
Communicating and Influencing
Working Together
Strengths may also be assessed at interview but these are not shared in advance.
Additional Assessment(s)
Written Exercise

This Vacancy is closed to applications.