HR Manager (MAT Cover)

Start Network is made up of more than 50 aid agencies across five continents, ranging from large international organisations to national NGOs. Together, our aim is to transform humanitarian action through innovation, fast funding, early action, and localisation.

We're tackling what we believe are the biggest systemic problems that the sector faces. Problems including slow and reactive funding, centralised decision-making, and an aversion to change mean that people affected by crises around the world do not receive the best help fast enough, and needless suffering results. Our work focuses on three areas to change the system:

·       Localisation: shifting power to those closest to the front line for more effective response.

·       New forms of financing: providing fast, early, and predictable funding to improve community resilience and preparedness. .

·       Collective innovation: sharing expertise, insights and perspectives to shape a more effective humanitarian system.

The Start Network is at a critical point in its journey. We have grown and diversified our membership over the past 10 years. We are now set to evolve into a decentralised “network of networks” by 2025. We are currently working with five national and regional networks (hubs) in Pakistan, DRC, Guatemala, India and the Pacific. They are developing locally-owned ways of anticipating and responding to humanitarian crises. We aim to support the emergence and development of further Hubs in the coming years.  Our ultimate ambition is to devolve leadership, membership, programming and decision making to the hubs, while the UK team transitions to provide services of support.

Start Network is committed to protecting people, particularly children, at-risk adults and affected populations from any harm that may be caused due to their encountering the Start Network as well as responding effectively should any harm occur.  We are also committed to safeguarding staff from any forms of bullying, harassment, sexual harassment, discrimination and abuse of power as outlined in the Dignity at Work policy. 

Start Network embraces diversity, promotes equality of opportunity and eliminates unlawful discrimination. We are an equal opportunities employer and treat every application on merit alone.  We particularly welcome applications from disabled, black, indigenous and people of colour (BIPOC), and LGBT+ and non-binary candidates.  We offer a guaranteed interview scheme for disabled applicants who meet our essential selection criteria. 

Our roles are open to discussion about flexible working.  This role is part-time as one role has been split in two for this maternity cover.  If you have the skills to do this role and the Head of People and Culture role, please get in touch.  Our office is London-based, but requirement to be in the office will be determined later in 2021.  It is likely to be 1 day a week regularly, with additional ad hoc days e.g. for all-staff meetings.


You will support management on all HR matters, working closely with the Head of People and Culture and the HR Administrator and Team Coordinator.  For this maternity cover, the role has been split to enable the Head of team to focus on strategic organisational development issues, with the HR Manager taking on day-to-day HR operations. 

You will be stepping into the role to cover an exciting period.  We have built HR foundations.  The next 12 months will be about embedding and improving our ways of working.  With a solid understanding of employment legislation, you will enjoy working at different levels, from issuing of contracts, through to reviewing total remuneration.  The function supports approximately 40 direct employees and the wider team of approximately 70 employed by host organisations working together as one team.  In this small organisation, relationship building is key.

Part-time, 21 hours

Fixed-term, 12 months maternity cover


·       Personnel and human resources

·       Communication

·       Project management

·       Performance management

·       Up-to-date knowledge of employment legislation

·       Leadership with empathy


Employee Relations

·       Advise managers on the terms and conditions of employment and knowledge share best practice, developing a package of guides and training

·       Develop and refresh HR policy and procedures that align with our strategy

·       Work closely with the HR Administrator and Team Coordinator to automate as much HR process as possible through our new HRIS (Bamboo)

·       Manage employee relations casework including dispute resolutions, disciplinaries, grievances, absence, retirement and redundancy – ad hoc

Total Remuneration

·       Provide first line advice on current and existing benefits for employees and managers, up

·       Administer payroll and payroll records (outsourced) and keep accounts and the provider updated with any changes

·       Review and update company benefits through an annual benchmarking survey

·       Complete and roll out remuneration recommendations from a benchmarking exercise being conducted in early 2021 (TBC pending Board decision)

·       Oversee the relationship with benefits providers and review the providers as needed (likely to include change in pension provider in 2021)

Recruitment, selection and induction

·       Provide advice on recruitment and selection strategies, working closely with the HR Administrator and Team Coordinator

·       Provide ad hoc support to the recruitment process, such as reviewing job descriptions and advising on interview questions

·       Provide HR induction and ongoing training and/or support to line managers

Performance and talent management

·       Manage talent and succession planning

·       Monitor and develop our performance review process

·       Support on learning and development initiatives as required by the Head of team when additional capacity is needed

Policies, processes and strategy support

·       Oversee compliance requirements, keeping updated with changes in employment legislation

·       Monitor and review HR policies and processes, annually updating for regulatory or organisational reasons

·       Participate in the implementation of specific projects, to help align the workforce with the strategic goals of the organisation

·       Act the secondary Safeguarding Focal Point (CFOO is primary)

·       Support change management processes


·        Flex communication style to convey complex information concisely to different audiences, avoiding jargon and using simple language

·       Build trust by showing commitment to your role, explaining your thought processes, checking your reactions and encouraging others to share their insights

·       Deliver results with awareness of impact on others internally and externally by considering the positions and perspectives of relevant stakeholders

·       Actively promote collaboration by spotting and breaking down barriers to siloed working, connecting colleagues, teams and initiatives

·       Coach others across the organisation through formal and informal channels, actively developing talent

·       Balance the need to follow systems and processes with the courage, identifying when systems and processes do not align with the mission, suggesting alternatives

·       Make best use of all of available resources, including people, technology and money to enable increased automation, digitisation and value for money

Start Network Culture

·       To carry out the responsibilities of the role in line with the Start Network Code of Conduct and with a commitment to safeguarding adults and children

·       A commitment to the Start Network vision, principles, values and approach

·       The Start Network team is an agile group of individuals who use their experience and skills across the network, so flexibility to work in and with different teams and functions is a part of our culture.


·       Centrally located WeWork office with onsite drinks and snacks available free of charge

·       Access to cultural talks, events, pop-up sales, and a place to meet and socialise after work

·       Discounts at local cafes and restaurants in association with WeWork

·       Flexible working with options to work from home and remotely some of the time

·       Contributory pension

·       Life assurance equivalent of three times your salary

·       Family friendly policies, particularly maternity pay (21 weeks full pay)

·       Training and development opportunities for individuals and cross-organisationally

·       25 days’ holiday, bank holidays plus 2 paid company days over the Christmas period

Any offer of employment is subject to relevant checks. Please refer to our privacy statement and candidate privacy notice regarding treatment of your data.

Role posted - 2021-04-07T11:04:48Z 12:04pm, 7th Apr 2021 BST

Start now, finish later

  • Your application will be reviewed blind, to ensure fairness
  • You'll need a CV/résumé, but it'll only be considered if you score well on blind review

Closes: 11:59pm, 18th Apr 2021 BST

We'll email you a link to your application page so you can get back to it later.

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