Advice & Support Officer

Job Summary
Contract Type:
Working Pattern:
Full time
Advert Start Date:
Advert End Date:
Closed for applications on 17/09/2019 23:59
£22,462 – £24,799
Job Category:
Vacancy ID:
Employment Location:
Post Number:
Closing date:
17 Sep
Further Information

An exciting opportunity has arisen for the right candidates to join the Rent and Income Team in the post of Advice and Support Officer. We are seeking knowledgeable and resilient applicants to join our team to provide benefit and money advice to Gateshead residents, some of who are at crisis point.

Recent changes in housing benefit legislation, Welfare Reforms and the challenging economic climate has led many tenants to struggle financially. Since the introduction of Welfare Reform, it has become increasingly important to focus on tenancy support and advice rather than simply relying on enforcement action to recover arrears. This role is therefore crucial to maintaining our high collection levels, sustaining tenancies and alleviating difficulties Gateshead residents encounter in relation to Welfare Reforms. An important element of your role will be to work with our partners at Citizens Advice and Job Centre Plus.

Working within our Rent and Income team and reporting to a Team Leader you will be responsible for your own caseload which will involve assessing and supporting customers who will have a variety of needs and vulnerabilities. You will offer this guidance and support in our base at Gateshead Civic Centre, out based housing offices, over the telephone, in tenant’s homes and via co-location at Citizens Advice Gateshead and Job Centre Plus. You should have a high level of personal resilience especially when dealing with setbacks, unforeseen events, obstacles and failures and have coping strategies to manage pressures and stress.

A large proportion of your caseload will be working with customers who are subject to Universal Credit. You will assist them to navigate the often-complex claims process and journey. You will help customers to understand the process, their responsibilities as well as liaising with the DWP to overcome any difficulties in relation to the claim. This element of your role will involve you being part located within local Job Centres where you will be the ‘point of contact’ to support DWP staff and any Gateshead residents with regards to any housing related or support queries. You will work closely with job coaches to ensure people receive both employment and housing advice.

You will also support our customers with other issues including welfare benefits advice, appealing sanctions, maximising income, advice around opening bank accounts, affordable credit options, food bank support, budgeting and money advice, energy advice and fuel poverty. Again, this will partly be delivered by you from the Gateshead Citizens Advice service as well as area-based offices, over the telephone and in tenant’s homes.

You will be expected to keep up to date with relevant legislation to assist residents and to cascade information internally to colleagues.

You should have an excellent understanding of the welfare benefit system, possess first-rate customer care skills and have suitable experience in discussing complex issues with customers.

For an informal discussion about the role please email Kevin Roberts kevinroberts@gatesheadhousing.co.uk
Rent and Income Manager, or call 0191 433 8986

You should consider the job profile when applying, giving examples of how you meet the criteria.

Please note
This job is closed for applications.