Deputy Director Roles in NHS Policy and Performance


Leeds, London


About the job


The Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC) is a ministerial department which sponsors and works with 15 Arm’s Length Bodies to deliver the Secretary of State’s duty to promote a comprehensive health service “designed to secure improvement in the physical and mental health of the people of England and in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of physical and mental illness”.


Job description

There are 5 roles available in the following 3 directorates:

Primary and Community Health Care

The directorate was formed in April 2020, and is responsible for policy for NHS out of hospital provision, as well as voluntary sector health provision (including hospices) that takes place outside of hospitals. The directorate oversees policy areas such as general practice, community pharmacy, community health services, dentistry, optometry, end of life care, social prescribing and various voluntary sector programmes. Between them these account for approximately £30bn expenditure, and a quarter of the NHS workforce.

The directorate has a key role in overseeing the response to COVID in primary and community health care. In addition to this, it is responsible for oversight of the primary and community health systems and the delivery of a number of manifesto commitments. It also oversees strategic reform for the sectors – such as the vision set out in the NHS Long-term plan to increase the level of health services provided in the community, in order to reduce pressure on hospitals, and bring care closer to home for patients.

Provider Efficiency and Performance

The Directorate is responsible for overseeing much of the performance of the NHS, including how it spends its money and performance against the various targets and standards, to make sure it is delivering a great service for taxpayers. Mainly concerned with what happens in hospitals, we cover A&E performance, ambulance policy (including the ambulance radio programme), the annual flu programme (the biggest in history this year), productivity and efficiency of NHS spending, cost recovery for those not entitled to free NHS care, elective care policy, and various other high profile and politically important issues.  
We are also the sponsors for NHS England and Improvement, an arm's length body of the department with a budget of c£140bn p/a.
Clearly given the importance of hospitals in dealing with COVID, we have a very active role in helping the NHS’s response – for example in having enough staff, bed capacity (including the Nightingales and independent sector hospitals) and negotiating funding from Treasury. We have also recently taken on policy responsibility for the emerging issue of long COVID.
PEP is a high performing, friendly and supportive Directorate with consistently high staff engagement levels. We are looking for Deputy Directors who will play an active role in the senior management team to ensure PEP continues to be a great place to work – particularly at a time when our staff need extra support with the challenges of COVID recovery and remote working.

NHS Quality, Safety, Investigations

The NHS Quality, Safety, Investigations Directorate leads the development of hospital policy including: general acute care and clinical conditions (including cancer), patient safety and quality, litigation, maternity care. We lead across DHSC for work on investigations and inquiries, and Covid legal challenges.

In relation to Covid, we are also responsible for the Independent sector contract for Covid, all aspects of indemnity arrangements (in both health and social care) that Covid has raised, and policy on bereavement. We have eight live investigations or inquiries where the Department is either sponsoring or responding to an inquiry or report. We cover a heavy Parliamentary workload particularly for hospital reconfigurations and clinical conditions (cancer, maternity, women’s health) as well as topical issues such as hospital car parking, hospital food and estates issues.

We have an analytical team supporting key projects and we sponsor four organisations:
Care Quality Commission,
NHS Resolution
Healthcare Safety Investigations Branch
Independent Review Panel.

We are a friendly and supportive team, and meet as a Division three times a week to ensure all staff have the big picture about Covid, non-Covid work and how we prioritise conflicting pressures during the Covid-19 pandemic.

For an overview of each of the 5 roles available, please see the candidate pack attached to the bottom of this advert.


Person Specification

The successful candidate must be able to demonstrate:

• Ability to lead diverse team in an inclusive way to deliver a quality service in a fast paced way.
• Ability to work flexibly at pace and to make sound decisions in a complex, fast-moving environment.
• Ability to rapidly understand and get up to speed with new concepts, ideas and Ministerial priorities, bringing together the right people to understand the issues, the level of ambition and set the direction
• Demonstrated ability to engage and influence stakeholders at all levels and to build effective relationships and networks across organisational boundaries;
• Experience in communicating with, engaging and influencing senior management and working collaboratively with senior management, including Ministers, senior central government officials, local councils, and other stakeholders.
• Excellent written and oral communication skills with the ability to present complex and technical issues simply and effectively;
• Ability to secure confidence and trust of stakeholders, senior leaders and peers, demonstrating confidence in the provision of advice, and challenging strategies and decisions when appropriate
• Ability to formulate, lead, communicate and implement strategies, policies; and excellent policy and analysis skills, including being able to use data to inform decisions


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Leadership
  • Delivering at Pace
  • Seeing the Big Picture
  • Changing and Improving


Whatever your role, we take your career and  development seriously, and want to enable you  to build a really successful career with the  department and wider Civil Service. It is crucial  that our employees have the right skills to  develop their careers and meet the challenges  ahead, and you’ll benefit from regular  performance and development reviews to  ensure this development is ongoing. As a Civil  Service employee, you’ll be entitled to a large  range of benefits.

This includes:

• 25 days annual leave on entry, increasing on a sliding scale to 30 days after 5 years’ service. This is in addition to 8 public holidays;
• one further day paid privilege entitlement to mark the Queen’s Birthday;
• a competitive contributory pension scheme that you can enter as soon as you join where we will make a significant contribution to the cost of your pension; where your contributions come out of your salary before any tax is taken; and where your pension will continue to provide valuable benefits for you and your family if you are too ill to continue to work or die before you retire;
• flexible working patterns including part- time or time-term working and access to Flexible Working Schemes allowing you to vary your working day as long as you work your total hours;
• generous paid maternity and paternity leave which is notably more than the statutory minimum offered by many other employers;
• interest-free loans allowing you to spread the cost of an annual travel season ticket or a new bicycle;
• the opportunity to use onsite facilities including fitness centres and staff canteens (where applicable);
• occupational sick pay.

Apply now!