Director - IPS Grow

Social Finance

  • Team: IPS Grow
  • Salary: £85,000 per annum (plus 10% in lieu of benefits)
  • Location: London SE11
  • Closing: 12:59pm, 10th Aug 2022 BST

Job Description

The opportunity

We are looking for a Director to lead IPS Grow, a large-scale programme that is helping to dramatically scale up high-quality employment services for people with severe and enduring mental ill health,  people accessing drug and alcohol treatment services as well as building on the health led trials which will result in more services in primary care.  The programme is currently undergoing a significant expansion to allow us to support the growth in IPS services around England. This will take the team from 12 to 21 people with the budget rising from around £1 million to £2 million per year. You will oversee a multi-functional team, including technical experts in the field, operational, product, data, and marketing specialists.

 We are looking for an experienced leader with outstanding, team building, strategic management, collaboration and stakeholder management and operational delivery skills. You will be passionate about changing people’s lives for the better but with a strong business sense and operational focus.

 We believe this role has huge potential to support the scale-up of the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) model across the UK and enable many more people with severe and enduring mental ill health and people accessing drug and alcohol treatment services to enter paid employment and change their lives for the better.


About IPS Grow

IPS Grow has been commissioned by NHS England & Improvement to support the rapid expansion of Individual Placement and Support (IPS) services across England. The team also works very closely with officials in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID).

 The aim of the programme is to support IPS services to mobilise quickly, deliver high quality IPS, and achieve high levels of employment outcomes for their clients. The programme launched in 2019 and was expanded in 2021 to cover IPS services in drug & alcohol teams as well as those in NHS mental health services, and to scale up the delivery of quality assurance fidelity reviews and on-site technical support to drive continuous improvement and paid outcomes for clients.

 IPS Grow has three key strands:

·       Hands-on operational support for services, including the delivery of quality assurance fidelity reviews and provision of technical support

·       Workforce development, including supporting services with attraction, recruitment, training, and development

·       Tools to improve collection and reporting of outcomes, including management of a web-based reporting tool

 In addition, IPS Grow plays an important leadership role in the IPS landscape in the UK and internationally.



The Director of IPS Grow will be part of the Senior Leadership group within Social Finance. They will report to the Team Head for Health and Work and will have full responsibility for the IPS Grow team, the effective delivery of the IPS Grow programme, and the achievement of our wider impact goals around the IPS model. The Director will also lead on our reporting to, and relationship with, the Health and Employment Partnerships advisory board.

 Contract and stakeholder management

·       Taking overall responsibility for delivering against the IPS Grow contract requirements and Key Performance Indicators. Works with the Operations Manager and Business Manager to ensure contract reporting is high quality and meets deadlines

·       Providing oversight for the c. £2 million annual IPS Grow budget, with technical support from the Operations Manager and Business Manager

·       Building strong relationships with contract managers and other senior stakeholders in NHS England and Improvement, DWP, and the Office of Health Improvement and Disparities

·       Identifying opportunities to build on the IPS Grow core programme to deliver further impact for the IPS community, for example through additional workforce development efforts or through other initiatives


IPS leadership

 ·       Acting as ambassador for Social Finance and the IPS model in national and international forums and with policymakers, clinical leaders, and other key actors with support from the Director of HEP Operations

·       Supporting delivery of the NHS Long Term Plan targets for access to IPS for people with severe mental illness and OHID’s ambitions for increasing access to IPS for people in drug and alcohol treatment services– for example, by playing a leading role in the NHS Long Term Plan Working Group for IPS

·       Playing an active and leading role in the UK and Ireland IPS Expert Forum

·       Providing thought leadership for the development of the IPS model, for example to ensure that it achieves parity of access and outcomes for people from ethnic minority backgrounds

·       Applying the principles of co-production to all elements of the programme


Team management and development

 ·       Leading a multi-functional team of around 20 professionals with technical, operational, product, data, project management, and marketing expertise

·       Line managing at least three team members directly (two Regional Managers and a Regional Manager / Operations Manager)

·       Using best endeavours to grow talent from ethnic minority backgrounds within Social Finance and wider IPS ecosystem

·       Ensuring the team is aligned around a common set of goals, objectives, strategies, and targets

·       Ensuring consistency and quality of practice across the team

·       Ensuring the team receive coaching, supervision, field mentoring, training and wider support to enable them to develop – with a particular focus on the high-quality delivery of technical support and fidelity reviews, working with and through the Director of HEP Operations and the Regional Managers

·       Creating a culture of team learning, reflection and continuous improvement, with an emphasis on evidence-based practice and the use of data to inform practice

·       Building a positive team culture, responsive to individual and collective needs


Wider contribution to the Health and Work team and Social Finance

 ·       Connecting across teams within Social Finance to bring the best of our capabilities to support the IPS Grow programme and to enable other teams to learn from IPS Grow’s experience

·       Contributing to the wider development of the Health and Work team, for example by contributing to development work around our wider strategy for IPS in the UK and internationally

·       Managing Health and Work team responsibilities around budget, resourcing, legal, data protection, race equity, team wellbeing and other core elements

·       Ensuring that we live our values both in the way we work and externally


About you

You might come from a private, public, or social sector background - ideally, you have spent time in more than one sector.

 You’re not expected to arrive with a complete skillset. Most importantly, you will be excited about the opportunity to lead and learn.

 We will look to see:

·       Shared values. Though sector-specific experience is not required, we have a passionate belief that helping people to achieve appropriate employment can transform their lives. We hope you will share this ethos. In addition, we expect you to show commitment to equity for people from ethnic minority backgrounds, disabled people and other groups that have historically been discriminated against

·       Ability to deliver tangible results across a large and complex operational programme. You should have experience of working through others to deliver outstanding operational outcomes in challenging settings. Ideally you have delivered impact through indirect influence and support as well as direct operational control

·       Management and leadership. You will have experience managing large projects to successful delivery. You will be able to effectively oversee a large expansion of a team and programme while maintaining a strong team culture and effective programme delivery. You will ideally have managed multi-disciplinary, mixed-tenure and virtual teams. You will also be able to drive new initiatives and  deliver positive change in a difficult environment. You value the culture of listening and learning and creating a working environment where people can thrive.

·       Ability to build relationships. This project will only succeed through the strength of relationships with a wide range of public, private, and social sector bodies, not least the partners that Social Finance would work with in delivering this contract. You will need to show that you have built outstanding collaborative relationships with a range of different individuals (both internal and external) and organisations, including at the most senior levels, and that these have led to social impact and/or operational success. You will also need to demonstrate your ability to work with and manage partner organisations with appropriate sensitivity and skill

·       Strategic leadership. You will be able to develop creative but feasible strategies for both the delivery of IPS Grow’s objectives and to support the wider development of IPS in the UK and internationally. You will be able to shift rapidly from strategy development to implementation, working with policymakers and senior stakeholders from across the sector to take high-impact actions that lead to increased access to IPS and improved employment outcomes for clients

·       Communications. You will be an excellent communicator both verbally and in writing. You will be able to persuade and influence individuals through 1-1 or small group conversations; present effectively to large groups (virtually and in person), for example in national webinars or at conferences; and write clear, compelling Word documents and PowerPoint presentations. You will be able to show empathy but also hold people to account and hold a firm line where needed.

·       Financial, technical, and contract management skills. You will manage a ~£2m budget, work with technical providers (such as an external IT consultancy) and manage sub-contracts effectively. You will be able to draw on Social Finance expertise to establish and maintain rigorous processes around data protection, contracting, safeguarding, and other legal and regulatory requirements. We expect you to be competent with standard Microsoft software (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint) and analytically minded

·       Ability to think creatively. You will be the key person responsible for the success of IPS Grow. You will need to demonstrate a strong grasp of operational and strategic challenges, develop creative and innovative solutions with the team, and implement them with speed and skill. You will take a structured approach to solving problems and will have a high tolerance for ambiguity

·       Understanding of the IPS agenda and commitment to driving evidence-based practice and quality improvements

You will have support around you within Social Finance and be committed to developing or deepening your expertise through your work in the practice and evidence around IPS, and how it can be applied in new settings effectively, such that you will quickly be regarded as a key leader in the IPS landscape.

To view the full job description, please visit the careers page of our website:

Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Applications closed Wed 10th Aug 2022


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Applications closed Wed 10th Aug 2022