Forward Arts Foundation - Office Co-ordinator

Jobs Tuesday, 3rd July 2018

Forward Arts Foundation is hiring an office co-ordinator

Role: Co-ordinate the office of the charity responsible for the Forward Prizes for Poetry & National Poetry Day

Hours: Full time, 10 am – 6 pm, 35 hours per week, Mon-Fri

Salary: £24,000

Place of work: c/o Royal Society of Literature, Somerset House, London WC2R 1LA

Closing date: midnight Thursday 12th July

This is a great opportunity to join the team responsible for promoting public knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of poetry in the UK.

The Forward Arts Foundation is among the UK's leading literary organisations: through National Poetry Day and the Forward Prizes for Poetry we celebrate excellence in poetry and widen its audience.

We do this by co-ordinating media, marketing and education initiatives with our partners, who include the BBC and leading publishers and retailers. We work closely year-round with schools, libraries, museums and major cultural institutions. In 2019, National Poetry Day - the UK's biggest celebration of poetry - will celebrate its 25th anniversary: we have ambitious plans.

We are seeking an experienced co-ordinator with excellent IT, communication and organisational skills. You will report to the Executive Director and co-ordinate internal systems and communications as well as respond to incoming queries across the organisation. This is a full-time staff job, a key role in our energetic team, ensuring the smooth running of both our office and our activities. We offer 25 days paid leave annually, 10 of which can be taken in the six-month probationary period.

Main aims of the post
To help honour and encourage good poetry at all levels, by providing administrative support for Forward Arts Foundation's programmes, including the Forward Prizes for Poetry, the Forward Book of Poetry and associated projects.
To enable key partners in the poetry, literary and literacy sectors and beyond to work together on delivery of National Poetry Day.
To enhance the organisational effectiveness of Forward Arts Foundation, by taking proactive responsibility for the efficiency of the team office.

Partnerships and Awards
To support the National Poetry Day manager in developing our networks with schools, libraries, publishers and booksellers, assisting with both our symposium programme and our regular newsletters.
To operate, and as appropriate improve, the administration of FAF's partnerships, particularly by keeping comprehensive records.
To have lead responsibility for the accuracy of FAF's database of contacts, by inputting and updating information on a daily basis, and by arranging upgrades of the database as needed.
To contribute to the growth of the partnership network, particularly by developing the publicity materials and the partnership area of FAF websites - including - or through events or special offers.
To produce a quarterly report of data on partnerships for the FAF board of directors and data for funding bids and Arts Council England reports when required.
To help with administration of FAF's literary awards, by supporting the Forward Prizes Manager in key tasks: sending calls for entries, collecting and collating submissions, sending lists and submissions to judges, notifying entrants of the results, and helping arrange prizes and prize-giving events.

Office and administration
To provide excellent service in responding to enquiries by phone, email, letter and in person.
To process and prepare invoices, working closely with FAF's accountant and Executive Director as required on preparation of budgets and reports.
To co-ordinate weekly team meetings, helping plan the agenda and review action-points, and to take the initiative in improving administrative procedures for implementation across the team.
To ensure that IT needs are met promptly, that the team’s printer, telephones and computers are in good working order and that stationery/supplies are kept up.
To arrange appointments and meetings, help with diary planning, process expense claims, and make travel arrangements.
To provide practical and administrative support for FAF communications, fundraising or governance.
To act as a line manager when required to a small number of interns and volunteers.

Educated to degree level, or having an equivalent level of expertise from professional experience.

Familiarity with IT: WordPress, Excel, Powerpoint are essential. InDesign, Xero, Submittable and Salesforce are desirable.
A good level of numeracy, familiarity with project budgets and invoice.
Awareness of how charities operate.

Substantial paid experience of carrying out a range of administrative tasks in an office, business or other professional setting.
Experience of introducing new working practices, and/or of leading improvement.
Experience of collaborating as part of a team, and ideally of supervising paid interns/volunteers.
Experience of customer service to the public by telephone, by email and face-to-face.

Skills and abilities
Highly organised and able to work from own initiative in managing a complex workload and meeting numerous deadlines.
Able to identify and solve problems using a sound combination of analytical and practical skills.
Strong interpersonal skills - able to engage a wide range of people with an appropriate balance of warmth and professionalism.
Able to collate data into statistics and to present these in well-written professional reports.

Attitudes and values
A pro-active and good-humoured attitude to meeting challenges and bringing about change.
Flexibility and willingness to learn.
A demonstrable commitment to equalities.

Please submit your CV with an accompanying letter, setting out your reasons for applying for this post and drawing attention to particularly relevant qualifications that match the profile and skills specification. Two referees' names should be included but references will only be taken up in the event of your being selected for the post.

Please say how you found out about this job.

Applications should be addressed to Susannah Herbert and submitted via our Submittable page. You should receive an email confirming receipt of your email application within 2 working days.

We will be interviewing on July 18 and 19.

We particularly welcome applications from black and minority ethnic candidates, as they are under- represented within the arts. We believe poetry is for everyone, regardless of age, disability, gender, gender reassignment, marital status, maternity and pregnancy, race, religion, class and sexual orientation. Forward Arts Foundation is an equal opportunities employer.

Applications via Submittable

For queries, please send an email for the attention of Susannah Herbert, to

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