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Internal opportunities

Application pack - Portfolio and Programme Coordinator

Job description

Date: 11 March 2019

Department: City and Organisational Strategy 

Post number: 1850

Section: Portfolio Management 

Job title: Portfolio and Programme Coordinator 

Grade: PO 6

Main purpose of job

The post-holder will report to the Portfolio Manager and will be responsible for:

  • Managing the coordination and delivery of an agreed portfolio of programmes and projects that contribute to the achievement of the Council’s strategic priorities; 
  • Assisting with the provision of quality support and assurance to political and senior officer leadership on the delivery of the portfolio of programmes and projects; 
  • Working across council and with city partners to support the effective delivery of the portfolio of programmes/projects and associated desired outcomes;
  • Supporting the implementation and sharing of good practice in relation to programme and project management procedures, tools and techniques.

The post holder will deputise for the Portfolio Manager, as may be required, on matters within the post’s sphere of responsibility.

Summary of responsibilities and personal duties

  1. Ensure the effective delivery of an agreed portfolio of programmes/projects that contribute to the achievement of the Council’s strategic priorities and associated outcomes and benefits. 
  2. Support the establishment and management of appropriate governance and delivery structures for the portfolios of programmes or projects as they emerge including all technical standards, systems and processes that may need to be implemented.
  3. Build and maintain programme and project plan(s) and provide effective leadership and management to deliver stated objectives. Identify and set appropriate programme and project controls. 
  4. Drive programme and project tasks to completion in accordance with the agreed programme schedule. 
  5. Monitor and report against programme and project milestones and provide assurance on delivery to senior management, elected members and/or other stakeholders as may be appropriate.
  6. Assist in the production timely committee, briefings, performance management and financial reports and to attend appropriate committees, corporate management teams, programme boards as and when required.
  7. Ensure effective programme and project change management processes are in place to agreed standards.
  8. Identify synergies and interdependencies between programmes and projects and highlight and report opportunities to maximise delivery and value for money. 
  9. Review and quality assure programme and project risk management arrangements, monitoring and reporting on risks and issues, developing mitigating actions and escalating as appropriate. 
  10. Ensure that delivery requirements are met consistently and effectively throughout the programme and project lifecycles and that all financial, legal, procurement, design and other technical inputs for each programme are fit for purpose and in line with appropriate regulations, council policies and agreed standards.
  11. Develop and maintain effective working relationships and communication with stakeholders, both internally and externally, to ensure effective delivery of allocated strategic and corporate programmes and projects.
  12. Develop and implement effective communication strategies in collaboration with Marketing and Communications to ensure that all necessary information is cascaded.
  13. Understand programme and project management standards and client requirements and help support the development of a consistent approach to building programme and project management capacity within council.
  14. Keep under review new developments and best practice in the fields relating to programme management and make appropriate recommendations for change and share knowledge where possible.
  15. Supervise any assigned staff as and when required. Show commitment to personal development and promote effective individual and team performance.
  16. Participate in all induction and in-service training provided by Belfast City Council and in the induction and support of all newly appointed staff and other human resource management policies and procedures as appropriate.
  17. Participate, as directed, in the council’s selection interview procedure.
  18. To act in accordance with the council and departmental policies and procedures including customer care; equal opportunities; health and safety; safeguarding and any pertinent legislation.
  19. Undertake the duties of the post in such a way as to enhance and protect the reputation and public profile of Belfast City Council.
  20. Undertake other such relevant duties that may from time to time be required.

This job description has been written at a time of significant organisational change, it will be subject to review, and amendment as the demands of the role and the organisation evolve.  Therefore, the post-holder will be required to be flexible, adaptable and aware that s/he may be asked to perform tasks, duties and responsibilities which are not specifically detailed in the job description but which are commensurate with the role.   

Employee specification

Date: 5 January 2021

Department: City and Organisational Strategy 

Post number: 1850

Section: Portfolio Management 

Job title: Portfolio and Programme Coordinator 

Grade: PO6 

Essential criteria

Applicants must, as at the closing date for receipt of applications and throughout the selection process, be current Belfast City Council employees or current Belfast City Council agency assignees. 

Qualifications and experience

Applicants must, as at the closing date for receipt of application forms: 

  • have a third level qualification in a relevant subject or an equivalent qualification; or have an industry recognised qualification such as MSP or PRINCE2 Practitioner level or an equivalent qualification and be able to demonstrate, by providing personal and specific examples on the application form, at least two years’ relevant experience in each of the areas below:


  • be able to demonstrate, by providing personal and specific examples on the application form, at least three years’ relevant experience in each of the areas below:

a) effective leadership, management and delivery of complex, multidisciplinary projects as an overall programme that have contributed directly to the achievement of corporate priorities within a large and complex organisation; 

b) applying recognised programme and project management approaches, tools and methodologies to support the effective delivery of complex programmes to tight deadlines including presenting recommendations and gaining consensus across a wide range of stakeholders; and

c) building and maintaining effective collaborative relationships with a range of internal and external stakeholders, analysing and resolving complex issues affecting programme delivery while displaying effective judgment.

Short-listing criterion

In addition to the above qualifications and, or experience, Belfast City Council reserves the right to short-list only those applicants who, as at the closing date for receipt of application forms, can demonstrate relevant experience of:

d) effectively monitoring and reporting on the quality of programme outputs to ensure strategic objectives are met.

Special skills and attributes

Applicants must be able to demonstrate, evidence of the following skills and attributes which may be tested at interview:

Team working and leadership skills:  the ability to lead and foster a motivating, engaging and supportive environment to maximise both contribution and potential of their team members to achieve objectives.

Communication and influencing skills:  the ability to display effective written and oral communications skills in both formal and informal settings with the ability to influence and persuade others on complex issues using plain, concise language. The ability to build rapport and maintain the engagement and commitment of others to secure their support in the delivery of projects.

Project management and work planning skills:  the ability to determine organisational priorities and resource requirements for complex programmes and projects and manage allocated workload on the basis of available resources and to work to tight deadlines to ensure effective delivery.

Partnership working skills:  the ability to form, maintain and enhance partnership working with internal and external stakeholders, networks and communities to build consensus around key projects.

Analytical and decision making skills:  the ability to analyse and interpret complex issues and exercise critical judgement in arriving at practical solutions and communicate findings clearly.

Performance management skills:  the ability to performance manage projects including the setting of objectives and targets, monitoring criteria and evaluation performance measures.

Political sensitivity skills:  the ability to show awareness and sensitivity in managing successfully within a political environment including working effectively with elected members, partner organisations and other agencies.

Terms and conditions of employment

Portfolio and Programme Coordinator (PO6)
‘Temporary cover’ post until 30 June 2021, subject to review
Portfolio Unit
City and Organisational Strategy Department

Job applicant privacy notice 

Belfast City Council is the Data Controller under the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) for the personal data it processes relating to job applicants.  Processing data from job applicants allows the council to manage the recruitment process, assess and confirm an applicant’s suitability for employment and decide to whom to offer a job.  It may also need to process data from job applicants to respond to and defend against legal claims.

If you apply for this job, you will be providing your personal data to the council whose lawful basis for processing it is for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority.  In some cases, the council will also need to process your data to ensure it is complying with its legal obligations.  For example, to monitor applicants’ sensitive data for equal opportunities purposes and to check applicants’ eligibility to work in the UK before employment starts.  The council will collect a range of information about you, including:

  • your name, address and contact details, including email address and telephone number;
  • details of your qualifications, skills, experience and employment history;
  • information about your current level of remuneration, which may include benefit entitlements;
  • whether or not you have a disability, or if your first language is not English, so that it can make reasonable adjustments, as required, during the recruitment process; and
  • information about your entitlement to work in the UK etc.

The council will collect this information in a variety of ways for example, by application forms, through forms of assessment, from interview or from your identity documents.  It may also collect personal data about you from third parties, such as references, but it will only seek this data if you have been recommended for appointment to the post and it will inform you that it is doing this.  Your personal data will be shared internally within the council with staff who are involved in the recruitment process and, where necessary, between internal departments for the purpose of ensuring a fair, systematic and objective recruitment and selection process is in place.  It will also be shared with external consultants for the purposes of candidate attraction and selection, where appropriate.  Your personal data will not be shared or disclosed to any other organisation without your consent, unless the law permits or places an obligation on the council to do so. Your data will be stored in a range of different places including the recruitment file, the HR information management system and other IT systems such as email.  It will be held and stored by the council in a safe and secure manner in compliance with Data Protection legislation and in line with the council’s Records Retention and Disposal Schedule.

As a data subject, you have a number of rights.  These include your right to:

  • access and obtain a copy of your personal data on request;
  • require the council to change incorrect or incomplete personal job applicant data; and
  • require the council to delete or restrict processing your data. 

If you have any queries regarding the processing of your personal data, please contact our Job Line on 028 9027 0640.  If you wish to contact the council’s Data Protection Officer, please write to Belfast City Council, City Hall Belfast, BT1 5GS or send an email to

Please see further details of the terms and conditions relating to this post set out below:


The appointment will be made by the selection panel, but will be subject to ratification by the director of the relevant department.

If you are currently placed on furlough, you will be required to return from furlough to commence in this post.

There may be a reserve list of applicants drawn up for this post which would last for a maximum of 12 months. Should a similar post become vacant within this time, it may be offered to those on the reserve list, in order of merit, without further interview.  For generic-type posts, this may include posts in another department. 

If a similar post does become vacant within this time, it will be offered to candidates on the reserve list in the following way:

  1. Candidates will be initially contacted by telephone and must respond within three working days to accept or decline the post.
  2. Candidates who cannot be contacted by telephone will be contacted by letter and must respond by telephone or by return of acceptance form within five working days of the date of the letter.

If candidates do not respond within the above time frames, the post will be offered, in order of merit, to the next person on the reserve list. The names of those candidates who have not responded within the above timeframes will be retained on the reserve list, in order of merit, to be considered for future vacant posts.

However, if candidates have been contacted on three separate occasions, and they have not responded within the above timeframes on these three occasions, the council will assume that they are no longer interested in the post and their names will be removed from the reserve list.

Should your contact telephone numbers or your address change since you submitted your application form, it is your responsibility to notify the HR Employee Resourcing Unit on 028 9027 0640 or by emailing with your new contact details.

This is a ‘temporary cover’ post until 30 June 2021, subject to review.  An existing permanent employee of Belfast City Council will, if successful, be appointed on the basis of undertaking a ‘temporary project’ post with the right to return to his or her substantive post at the conclusion of the ‘temporary project’ post.  An existing temporary or fixed term contract employee will, if successful, be appointed on the basis of a further temporary or fixed term contract into a ‘temporary project’ post but with no automatic right to revert back to his or her original temporary or fixed term contract post.  Similarly, an existing agency assignee will, if successful, be appointed on the basis of a ‘temporary project’ post but with no automatic right to revert back to his or her original agency assignment. Temporary and fixed term contract employees and agency assignees should give consideration to this prior to applying or accepting this post.

For internally trawled permanent or temporary project/cover/review posts, candidates must remain current employees or agency assignees throughout the selection process in order to be recommended for appointment. Candidates who are no longer current employees or agency assignees as at the short-listing, testing/assessment or interview stage will not be eligible to progress through the process; even if they were an employee or agency assignee at the closing date for receipt of applications.  Similarly, if placed on the reserve list, candidates must still be current employees or agency assignees as at the point in time that a vacancy arises. Candidates who are no longer Belfast City Council employees or agency assignees will not be offered any future vacant posts from a reserve list, even if the timing of the reserve list is still valid.

Job details

Job description: please refer to the job description for details of the duties of the post. 

Employee specification: please refer to the attached employee specification for details of any qualifications, experience, etc. which are required for the post. Should an applicant be recommended for appointment to this post, he or she will be required to produce official original proof of any qualifications, etc. he or she relied upon to support their application.  Please also be advised that an applicant must provide evidence to demonstrate that he or she was in possession of such qualifications, etc. at the closing date for applications. 


The salary will be determined by the council in line with that determined by the National Joint Council for Local Government Services, currently Salary Scale PO6, SCP 40 to 43, £43,857 - £46,845 per annum (in normal circumstances, the starting salary is the minimum point), paid monthly by direct payment by the Bankers Automated Clearing System (BACS) to a bank or building society account of your choice.


The person appointed will be based initially in the City Hall, Belfast but will be required to work in and/or visit other locations.

Please note, given the uncertainty of the ongoing situation with Covid 19 (Coronavirus) and the closure of council buildings the person appointed may be asked, in the first instance, to report to a different location, work from home and/or be reassigned or redeployed to another area of work within the council.

Pre-employment checks

Prior to taking up duty the person recommended for appointment must:

  1. Enter into an agreement which sets out the main terms and conditions of employment.
  2. Provide evidence of the right to work and reside in the UK via an original full UK birth certificate and original proof of national insurance number (for example, via national insurance card, P45 or payslip etc). No temporary national insurance numbers can be accepted. Individuals who do not have a UK birth certificate will be asked to bring their passport and other documentation as required.
  3. Produce official evidence of his or her qualifications as required.  Please be advised that candidates must provide evidence to demonstrate that they were in possession of them at the closing date for applications.
  4. Provide details of the bank or building society account to which his or her salary or wage will be lodged.
  5. Provide two satisfactory work references. If suitably satisfactory references are not received, he or she will not be offered the appointment.
  6. Pass satisfactorily a medical assessment by the council’s Occupational Health Service provider.
  7. Complete the relevant Northern Ireland Local Government Officers’ Superannuation Committee (NILGOSC) membership or opt out forms.
  8. Complete a disclosure of family relationships form.
  9. Complete a disclosure of criminal convictions form, under the Rehabilitation of Offenders (NI) Order 1978.  All applicants who are recommended for appointment to a post within Belfast City Council must provide details in respect of any criminal convictions which are not regarded as ‘spent’ convictions.  Any disclosed convictions will be taken into account only when the conviction is considered relevant to the post and will be seen in the context of the job, the nature of the offence and the responsibility for the care of existing client/customer and employees.

If the person appointed acquires a conviction throughout the course of his/her employment with Belfast City Council, he/she must bring this to the attention of his/her line manager/departmental HR representative. Failure to comply with this request can result in a breach of the terms and conditions of employment and may result in sanction or dismissal.  Any information will be dealt with confidentially and help is available.

Please note that if an applicant is recommended for appointment he or she must complete the pre-employment checks, outlined above, within 10 working days or consideration will be given to withdrawing the recommendation for appointment and no formal offer of appointment will be made.   After pre-employment checks are complete, an applicant must formally accept and commence employment in this post within four weeks. 

Council policies

The person appointed will be required to comply with all current and future council policies, procedures, guidelines, agreed working practices and any relevant collective agreements incorporated into the contract of employment.


The general conditions of service as prescribed from time to time by the National Joint Council for Local Government Services and by the council for its officers shall apply to the appointment and the Single Status Implementation Agreement dated 2007 as renegotiated from time to time is hereby incorporated into the contract of employment.

A copy of the council’s Disciplinary Procedure and Grievance Procedure will be issued to all new employees at the council’s Induction Course.

Please note if you are an applicant with previous local authority service in England, Scotland, Wales etc., you are advised to clarify your particular situation with regard to the continuity of this service, prior to accepting an offer of appointment from Belfast City Council.

Service and hours of duty

The hours of duty are 37 per week, working five days per week, Monday to Friday. Flexible working hours are in operation between 7.30am and 6.30pm, with set core times that the person appointed must be in work. However, the person appointed will be required to start and finish work at specific times that suit the operational needs of the service and she/he will, when advised, be required to work outside of these hours for operational reasons including on extra statutory, bank and/or public holidays.

In accordance with the National Joint Council for Local Government Services National Agreement on Pay and Conditions of Service variations to the established working week or patterns of work will be reasonable and subject to adequate notice. 

Annual leave

Annual leave and extra statutory, bank or public holiday entitlement is calculated in hours/minutes. 

A person appointed on the standard full time hours of 37 per week will be entitled to 170.2 hours (23 days) annual leave, plus 88.8 hours (12 days) bank or other holidays.

Annual leave entitlement will be increased by 37 hours (5 days) in the case of officers who have not less than 5 years’ continuous service and by a further 22.2 hours (3 days) in the case of officers who have not less than 10 years’ continuous service.

Figures in brackets represent the number of days based upon a standard day of 7.4 hrs.

For individuals who do not work the standard full-time hours, annual leave and extra statutory, bank or public holiday entitlement will be calculated on pro-rata basis to their contracted hours, based on the standard full time hours of 37 per week and a standard day of 7.4 hours (i.e. 7 hrs 24 minutes).

Employees are entitled to a holiday with a normal day’s pay for each of the statutory, general and public holidays as they occur.  Where the balance of the employee’s public / bank and statutory holiday entitlement has been exhausted, additional leave taken for public / bank and statutory holidays will be deducted from the employee’s annual leave entitlement.

All employees required to work on extra statutory, bank or public holidays will be remunerated in accordance with Part 3, paragraph 2 of the National Joint Council for Local Government Services National Agreement on Pay and Conditions of Service.

The leave year commences on 1 April. If an employee starts part way through the annual leave year, the employee will receive annual leave entitlement on a pro rata basis, calculated on the number of days remaining in the current leave year from the first day of employment.

Sick leave

This scheme is intended to supplement Statutory Sick Pay and Incapacity Benefit so as to maintain normal pay during defined periods of absence on account of sickness, disease, accident or assault.  Absence in respect of normal sickness is entirely separate from absence through industrial disease, accident or assault arising out of or in the course of employment with a local authority.  Periods of absence in respect of one shall not be set off against the other for the purpose of calculating entitlements under the scheme.  Employees are entitled to receive sick pay for the following periods:

Duration of service Sick pay entitlement
During first year of service one month’s full pay and (after completing four months service) two months half pay
During second year of service two months’ full pay, and two months’ half pay
During third year of service four months’ full pay, and four months’ half pay
During fourth and fifth years of service five months’ full pay, and five months’ half pay
After five years’ service six months’ full pay, and six months’ half pay


The person appointed will automatically become a member of the Local Government Pension Scheme (Northern Ireland) LGPS (NI) in line with scheme regulations.  He or she may opt out of the scheme. However, the council is required to comply with automatic enrolment provisions and will automatically enrol the person appointed at certain times. The LGPS (NI) is administered by Northern Ireland Local Government Officers’ Superannuation Committee (NILGOSC) (


Canvassing in any form, oral or written, direct or indirect, will disqualify an applicant for appointment. Candidates can, however, contact the relevant department for further information about the post.  The person from the relevant department who provides further information should not be a member of the selection panel.


The minimum period of notice to be given by an employee shall normally be the ordinary period from one payment of salary or wages to the next.

Belfast City Council may terminate an employee's employment with the council by giving the following period of notice:

Continuous service Period of notice
One month or more but less than two years Not less than one week
Two years or more but less than twelve years Not less than one week for each year of continuous service
12 years or more Not less than 12 weeks

It is usual to give one week’s notice to terminate this ‘temporary cover’ post arrangement.  Your statutory notice periods which relate to your substantive post with the council remain unchanged.

Probationary period

The person appointed may be required to complete a six month probationary period, if this is a requirement of the relevant department, and during this time one week’s notice will be given by the council to terminate employment.

Interview expenses

Reimbursement of interview expenses is not available.

Receipt of applications

Completed applications must be emailed to by 4pm on Thursday 11 February 2021.

Please note, as part of our COVID HR Service Recovery Plan, we are unable to issue or receive any hard copy application forms, either by post or hand-delivered, at this time.

Please note that it is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure that his or her application form is submitted and received in the Human Resources Section via by this closing date and time. Application forms returned electronically must be submitted as an email attachment.  Due to the council’s Computer Use Policy and security protocols, storage services such as SkyDrive are not accessible.  Applications submitted as a link to a storage service will not be accepted.  No late application forms will be considered.  No application forms, or supporting information in respect of an already submitted application form, will be considered after this date and time. Applications will not be accepted by fax.

Short-listing and interview date

It is envisaged that short-listing for this post will take place on Monday 15 February 2021.  Whilst no specific testing or assessment arrangements are anticipated for this post, depending on the volume of applicants, the council reserves the right to include these mechanisms as part of the selection process. It is also envisaged that interviews will be held on Monday, 22 February 2021 (and possibly Wednesday, 24 February 2021 if a second date is needed) and will be held via MS Teams.

The council will make all reasonable efforts to accommodate applicants who are unavailable on the specified interview date but it is under no obligation to do so.

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