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Department for Education Sector Head

Valuation Office Agency (VOA)
Various with hybrid and flexible working as standard
National: £67,238 | London: £72,098 plus industry leading pension
Closing date
4 Mar 2024

Job Details


Aberdeen, Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff, Carmarthen, Colchester, Croydon, Durham, Eastbourne, Edinburgh, Exeter, Folkestone, Glasgow, Hull, Inverness, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Norwich, Nottingham, Oxford, Plymouth, Preston, Sheffield, Southampton, St Austell, Stoke-on-Trent, Swansea, Wrexham

About the job

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) are the public sector’s property valuation experts and advisers. We are one of the largest employers of surveyors in the country offering access to a whole host of learning and development opportunities to support your career development.

We’re looking for talented people who are eager to contribute to vital public services and assist us to deliver taxation and benefits support to the government and local authorities. Your skills and experience will enable us to provide an efficient, effective service right at the heart of the public interest.

At the heart of the agency, we are committed to providing our people with a work environment which is accommodating and accessible to all and which values diversity and inclusion in everything we do.  We encourage our people to bring their whole selves to work by providing a culture that values different perspectives to help tackle complex problems, promote innovation and deliver stronger decision making in a safe and supportive environment. We therefore welcome applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds to join our organisation and enable us to be representative of the communities we serve.

Our people have the freedom to manage their own diaries and are empowered to deliver under their own autonomy. We trust our people and look forward to welcoming your skills into the VOA community.

Job description

Department For Education Sector Head – Role Overview

District Valuer Service (DVS) provide professional property advice across the public sector, including private and third sector clients involved in delivering public services and functions of a public nature. Our clients include the Central, Regional, Local and Devolved Government, Health, Transport & Infrastructure and the Environment.

As a Sector Head, initially for the Department for Education (DfE) Project and thereafter for wider sectors across DVS the role holder will co-ordinate and lead across DVS and play an active role in both the DVS senior leadership team and the senior leadership community across the VOA.

DVS is the business stream tasked with providing a range of statutory and non-statutory functions, these are:

  • Provision of advice on valuations and apportionments for national taxation purposes.
  • Provision of valuations and property advice for Other Public Bodies (OPBs) to support their implementation of a wide range of regulatory and legislative functions.
  • The delivery of government policies and estate strategies in situations where there is a property requirement related to the exercising of a public function and / or public money is involved.
  • This majority of the work is untied and undertaken on a contractual ‘earned funding’ full cost recovery charging basis, some is fix funded.

Department For Education Sector Head – Key responsibilities

  • Oversee high profile, complex, and contentious work ensuring considerations VOA reputation, while implementing appropriate assurance steps. Apply advanced analytical skills to effectively resolve these most complex and sensitive issues.
  • Provide programme management, delivering large scale asset valuations with large portfolio values, produced on time and within budget.
  • Responsible for the overall management of Net Capacity Assessment Programme for DFE.
  • Providing strong leadership on operational delivery, ensuring successful delivery of Key Performance Indicators to ensure value for money is delivered.
  • To co-ordinate with other Sector Heads in DVS, ensuring work is delivered to agreed budgets with full cost recovery.
  • Ensure quality of outputs and compliance with Valuation Integrity requirements.
  • To offer advice on Agency policy implementation, including escalating key issues as part of the DVS Senior Management Team.
  • Planning for resource deployment within client budgets together with pipeline planning for work alongside Unit Heads to ensure delivery of annual income target, DVS income and cost contribution.
  • To develop and maintain client liaison, delivery strategy and effective processes with clients agreeing the terms of the Service Level Agreements (SLA's) including timeliness, budgetary and quality standards.
  • Build and maintain strong collaborative working relationships, whilst demonstrating adaptability within SLA’s.
  • Oversee line management responsibilities ensuring effective performance management, team skills development and ensuring effective succession/knowledge planning, whilst also providing regular coaching and development discussions with direct reports, putting in place and actively managing their development plans.
  • Act as a mentor/sponsor, making sure leaders and specialists use their experience, skills, and expertise to develop their teams.
  • Effectively maintain own caseload dealing with complex cases, provide strategic and high-level technical advice and assist others with peer reviews to ensure appropriate quality standards are met.
  • Be a visible and active member of the DVS Senior Management Team, Chief Valuer Group (CVG) and wider Corporate Leadership Community contributing to the strategic objectives of the team, including embedding VOA vision and values.

Person specification

Our Department of Education Sector Head will be a strong leader with extensive knowledge of, and practical experience in operational delivery experience and people management. They will work proactively to address risks and issues including escalation and litigation cases by understanding underlying causes before providing solutions. They will have the ability to inspire and motivate the team to deliver its objectives and continuously improve individual and business performance. They will maintain strong stakeholder management, effectively resolving potentially competing requirements. The ideal candidate will maintain a deep understanding and awareness of the external market activity and the political environment when thinking through the impact of decisions and outcomes and keeping up to date with relevant legislation.

 Essential Criteria

  • Full RICS Surveying Qualification.
  • Strong leadership ability developed through extensive operational delivery experience and people management able to develop and motivate the team to meet objectives.
  • The ability to deliver against operational delivery targets.
  • Strong stakeholder management and influencing skills, including high levels of negotiating, consulting, and interpersonal skills to achieve co-operation over mutually acceptable solutions.
  • Experience of overseeing quality assurance processes, design, and delivery of training.
  • Proven track record of managing large scale programmes for public sector contracts.
  • An extensive valuation knowledge and legislative knowledge which you proactively keep up-to-date and use to provide advice and guidance to your team.
  • Wide political and legislative awareness and the aptitude to grasp how this impacts valuation.
  • Hold a full UK driving licence.


Full UK driving licence.


Full RICS Surveying Qualification.


Full RICS membership.


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Leadership
  • Seeing the Big Picture
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Making Effective Decisions


Alongside your salary of £67,238, Valuation Office Agency contributes £18,154 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.

The VOA operates a Flexible Working policy, allowing you to balance your work and personal commitments.

The VOA also operates Hybrid Working – your role will be a combination of office and home working. 

We offer a generous leave allowance that starts at 25 days and goes up to 30 days after 5 years’ service.

  • Pay – In the last few years, we have increased both the minimum and maximum pay points for everyone in the VOA.
  • Pension - We make contributions to our colleagues’ Alpha pension equal to approximately 27% of their salary. Please click on this link for further information Civil Service Pension.
  • Family friendly policies – Our maternity, adoption or shared parental leave encompasses 26 weeks with full pay followed by 13 weeks statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid at your discretion. We also offer paternity leave of 4 weeks at full pay.
  • Personal support – We offer extensive special leave to help balance your life and work commitments, a variety of non-financial rewards (including a Cycle to Work scheme of up to £4000) and we work with professional providers to provide occupational health and full mental and physical wellbeing services.
  • Coaching and development – We are committed to continuous professional and personal development. You will be supported by colleagues with a wealth of knowledge and experience to continually grow in your role.
  • Essential Equipment - VOA will support everyone to get additional essential kit and equipment, to make sure they have a suitable and safe home working environment.

Download the Employee Value Proposition for full details of the benefits of being a VOA employee at:


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