Associate Director: Belonging and Engagement – INTERNAL ONLY

King's College London

Job id: 077314. Salary: £61,896 – £71,057 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance.

Posted: 23 October 2023. Closing date: 29 October 2023.

Business unit: International, Engagement & Service. Department: Communities & National Engagement.

Contact details:Jim Collins. [email protected]

Location: Strand Campus. Category: Professional & Support Services.

Job description

The purpose of the position is to develop and deliver a strategic plan to co-create a ‘Thriving Community’ and ‘Student Success’ at King’s, aligned to the objectives Strategy 2026 and Vision 2029.   

To lead on the formulation of a belonging and engagement strategy as a component of a One King’s community and serve as the Strategic leader of the BE@ King’s programme and a key contributor in the development of the ‘KLab’ project. Working with senior stakeholders across our community, to explore and embed co-creation and partnerships with driven and change-making organisations and individuals. 

The postholder will be responsible for demonstrating the role of belonging and engagement in supporting Student Success and a Thriving Staff Community within a whole-university approach to supporting staff and students to develop and fulfil their potential within a positive and inclusive culture. Building an operational model informed by research and best practice for future integrated approach to community health and wellbeing.   

This post requires experience of managing strategic projects within Higher Education a strong commitment to excellence in working holistically, excellent communication skills, will be a good listener who works well with people from different disciplines, and someone with a passion for bringing people together to create positive change.  

Key Responsibilities will be aligned to the strategic goals to: 

  • Build a thriving, diverse and inclusive community where all feel that they are respected and belong.  
  • Become a sector-leader in supporting student mental health and wellbeing 
  • Work with our students and staff to co-create a community that all can identify with and feel a sense of belonging to, whether on campus or online.
  • To pilot innovative approaches to belonging and engagement, for both students and staff, and explore opportunities to enable our people to reach their potential.

This post will be offered on an fixed term secondment until 31/07/2025 

This is a full-time post – 100% full time equivalent

Key responsibilities

  • To act in accordance with the guiding principles as set out in the Strategic Vision 2029: to, to be an exceptional institution and make the world a better place and contribute to the Four Key Goals of Strategy 2026. 
  • Work with our staff and students to co-create a One King’s community that  all can identify with and feel a sense of belonging to, whether on campus or online. 
  • To bring together existing areas of delivery, devising a strategic rationale, business case and establish KPIs aligned to University Community Charter and the strategic priorities and objectives of Strategy 2026.   
  • To become an exemplar university, ensuring our approach to creating a thriving community are research-led and evidence-informed. Drawing on research, education and engagement in physical and mental health to inform change not only in our own community, but in communities across the UK and at global scale. 
  • Developing broad multidisciplinary approach to Belonging and Engagement alongside KCLSU, SED, Professional Services. Amplified through our Faculty, industry and KHP, that explicitly consider the diversity across King’s, and the divergent needs of our community – who are all seeking a sense of belonging. 
  • Lead BE@King’s pilot programme to encourage collaboration of integrated solutions, with students and our community to prioritise building trust, ensuring participation, opening up knowledge, and focusing on benefit of belonging within King’s and beyond.  
  • To manage the Belonging and Engagement team and work with Faculty to encourage and enable members of the community to hold agency and provide opportunity to design and develop ideas and innovate that recognise the basic psychological needs of autonomy, competence and relatedness.  
  • Co-create a thriving, inclusive community as part of the educational gain of a distinct King’s experience. Working with faculty at IoPPN, SMaRteN network and others to prioritise social integration, mental health and healthy behaviours to fulfil potential and prepare for future success. 
  • Work to pilot and innovative approaches to community inclusion, social cohesion and belonging, implementing aligned to King’s Mental Health Strategy, and embedding the KCL ways to wellbeing model across our community experience.  
  • Responsible for stakeholder management and co-production; advocating open and active communication; anticipating and prioritising our staff and student needs in belonging and service design and delivery.  
  • Contribute to the development and implementation a whole-university approach to impact measurement, tracking progress and communicating outcomes. Validated through effective collection and representation of feedback. Drawing from expertise in the evaluation of public mental health initiatives and aligning with the national strategy around student mental health 
  • Ensure positive experience drives decision making and effective change projects, with the introduction of co-design practices, so that our community are engaged in the design phase of initiatives, projects and/or services. 
  • Working with community stakeholders a culture and environment that supports good mental health and developing proactive interventions to improve the mental health of the whole community.  
  • To work with OD and HR to find ways of fostering belonging, encouraging engagement and connectedness across our King’s Community. Working with the Staff & Culture Strategy Committee to ensure staff have access to tools, resources and information to manage and protect their own health and wellbeing. 
  • Build connection between belonging at King’s aligned to One King’s Impact Challenges to demonstrate our social impact through commitment to knowledge with purpose and improving mental health and wellbeing, with a focus on young people, starting with our students.  
  • Act as a key driver and collaborator in bringing together services from across the University in developing ‘The Cathedral KLab’ project in conjunction with the VP: Education & Student Success 
  • Act as a role model for professional behaviour and best practice, in line with King’s Principles in Action. Promoting our ethos of Support, Challenge, Connect, and Include and commitment to Sustainability.  
  • To deliver operational excellence, to be simple, nimble and effective, to align people, space, technology and culture. With a focus on the requirements of students for a seamless, digitally enabled, end-to-end user experience 

Undertake other duties not specifically stated above, commensurate with the grade of the post, which from time to time are necessary for the effective performance of the University.

Skills, knowledge, and experience

Essential criteria 

  • Prince 2 Qualification 
  • Previous strategic leadership experience in higher education, in a role with responsibility for both staff and/or student experience and wellbeing.  
  • A positive, motivated and proactive self-starter, who prides themselves on resiliency and entrepreneurial spirit. 
  • Excellent Leadership skills and significant knowledge of how to develop, lead and inspire high performance, relating to community health, wellbeing and experience. 
  • In-depth understanding of how to deliver exceptional student and staff experience to enhance both individual and community health and wellbeing at a primary (preventative) level.  
  • Previous experience of stakeholder management, internal & external with a track-record of building partnerships and influencing senior leaders at King’s.   
  • Knowledge of developing Strategy and operational excellence – informed by data, insight and best practice translated into actionable KPIs and impact 
  • Excellent inter-personal skills that build trust, respect and rapport, and creates mutually beneficial relationships with a wide variety of people to influence perceptions, opinions and outcomes.  
  • Exceptional communication skills, both written and verbal, e.g., board reporting and presentation level, to convey complex information to a diverse range of audiences and stakeholders using a variety of techniques 
  • Ability to analyse, evaluate and assess information to lead projects through their entire lifecycle including measuring impacts and strategic impact.
  • Desirable criteria

  • Expertise in developing and supporting Organisational wide programmes with a focus on facilitating cultural change and enabling professional development
  • Previous experience of working in a multi-site environment, prioritizing complex and often conflicting demands. 
  • Further Information

    King’s College London recognises that equality of opportunity and the recognition and promotion of diversity are integral to its academic and economic strengths. The following principles apply in respect of the university’s commitment to equality and diversity:

    • To provide and promote equality of opportunity in all areas of its work and activity;
    • To recognise and develop the diversity of skills and talent within its current and potential community;
    • To ensure that all university members and prospective members are treated solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential without receiving any unjustified discrimination or unfavourable treatment on grounds such as age, disability, marital status, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, trans status, socio-economic status or any other irrelevant distinction;
    • To provide and promote a positive working, learning, and social environment which is free from prejudice, discrimination and any forms of harassment, bullying or victimisation;
    • To foster good relations between individuals from different groups and tackle prejudice and promote understanding.

    King’s has been a member of the Athena SWAN Charter since 2007 and gained its Bronze institutional award in 2008. Our award was successfully renewed in September 2013 for a further three years. The Athena SWAN agenda forms part of a wider suite of diversity and inclusion work streams. Working with the Charter is helping King’s to identify best practice for the working environment of all staff working in science disciplines

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