Liberal Democrats

Chief Executive - Liberal Democrats

Full Job Description

Job Title:               Chief Executive - Liberal Democrats 

Salary:                   A competitive package will be negotiated with the chosen candidate.

Tenure:                  Permanent

Hours:                   Full time including evenings and weekends where required

Location:               Lib Dems HQ, Westminster, London SW1P

Closing Date:        Thursday 12 September 2019, Midday

The Liberal Democrats are a resurgent Party. Over the last few years it has grown in membership from 80,000 to over 110,000, increased its MEPs to 16 in the May European Elections, and former Labour and Conservative MPs Chuka Umanna and Sarah Wollaston have recently joined. In August the party won back Brecon and Radnorshire, with Jane Dodds, the Leader in Wales, joining the Westminster parliamentary party, and successfully defended Shetland in the Scottish Parliament. This has been underpinned with a steady growth of councillors in both by-elections and local elections. In the last two years alone the party has gained over 700 new council seats and since May now control 25 councils in England.

Politics is a volatile business. The last few years have been challenging following five years in coalition, when the party in the 2015 election was reduced to eight male MPs.

The 2016 referendum was a catalyst for significant change on the political landscape. Party membership surged to 80,000 and the party had the opportunity to harness the energy and enthusiasm of new, principally young (under-35) members. The last two years have seen a substantial growth in confidence, increasing volunteer activist numbers and a new vision for the party, as the strongest Remain party, resulting in polling numbers increasing over the last four months consistently to around 20% (from 7% in 2017).

Jo Swinson, the Party Leader, has a clear ambition and a vision for the future of the party, through growth of members, growth of finance and above all elected representatives. Her commitment to equality and diversity is widely recognised.

Role of the Chief Executive

The Chief Executive is responsible for delivering the strategy of the party, underpinned by the Leader’s vision, and approved by the Federal Board and the Party Conference. The Chief Executive is ultimately responsible to the Federal Board who monitors the strategy and actions delivered by HQ staff and by the Federal and State committees of the party.

The Chief Executive leads the party administration and directs the human, financial and administrative resources of the Party - both its senior professional team and its membership and supporter base. S/he will bring energy and outstanding leadership to this crucial job, whilst recognising that the relationship with the Leader (for political leadership) and the President (line manager of the Chief Executive and the representative of all members of the party) have a key role in the direction of the party.

The Chief Executive is directly responsible for the HQ Directors Team and other directly managed Senior Managers, and through them, all staff of the Federal Party and Parliamentary Office of the Liberal Democrats. S/he is also responsible for ensuring that HQ and staff teams work closely with their Federal and State member representatives, who will monitor and deliver services to members and the outside world.

It is recommended that you read the full job description and organisation chart before applying for this role.

Please apply by email attaching:

  • A current detailed CV;
  • A letter of application no more than 2 sides of A4 with (a) a statement of suitability (drawing from the competencies listed in the job description) and (b) a vision for the role (drawing from the key objectives set out in the job description); 
  • Details for two referees, one of whom should be your current or most recent employer; 
  • A completed diversity monitoring form.
  • Please ensure we have the means to contact you by phone and email.

Closing Date

Applications should be sent to Natalia Villazan at natalia.villazan@libdems.org.uk or 07384 525218 by no later than midday on Thursday 12 September 2019 

Potential candidates wanting further information should contact Anne Sullivan, Aide to the President, on Anne.Sullivan@libdems.org.uk or 07469 035 545 who will arrange for a telephone conversation with Baroness Brinton (the President) or another senior officer of the party.

We will notify all applicants when the process is complete.

Interview/Start Dates

Interviews will take place in the w/c on 16 September 2019.

Applicants are encouraged to inform us if any reasonable adjustments are needed to be made during any part of the recruitment process.

Please note:  We will not be able to employ you if you are not eligible to work in the UK. We will not be able to obtain a work permit on your behalf.

The Liberal Democrats are equal opportunity employers and particularly welcome applications from groups who are currently under-represented in our staff.


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