REMINDER: This sound like you? Then maybe you could be IHBC’s new ‘Professional Development (PD) Officer –

  • PASSIONATE about conservation
  • LOVE travel and seeing new and old places
  • ENJOY working with people
  • ZEST for learning and education
  • BORED with regular commutes
  • PREFER flexible working
  • INHERENTLY self-motivated
  • UNDERSTAND leadership
  • NATURAL communicator, online and in person
  • STRIVE for new skills and networks
  • APPRECIATE fulfilling but hard work 

With commuting costing some 10% of the average UK conservation salary, and flexibility, satisfaction and ownership often critical concerns for the modern practitioner, the IHBC’s home- (or own-office) based Professional Development (PD) Officer role(s) may well be where your future lies, provided you can demonstrate that you will excel in leading and shaping the IHBC’s suite of support for professional learning and development in built and historic environment conservation.

NB: This role is funded by the IHBC, and the final structure of any post or posts will be informed  by the proposals and preferences of any successful applicants.  As these may range from shared or part time posts to consultancies or a single, full time post (less likely but if so, initially fixed term), the precise nature of the role or service will be determined as part of the appointments process and negotiations. 

Job description
The Professional Development Officer post-holder(s) will lead and co-ordinate the IHBC’s programme of Continuing Professional Development (CPD)-related learning, education and training support, including especially:

  • Advancing our highly respected Membership Application Training Events (MATE) sessions in the short term
  • In the longer term, extending the wider TeamStarter training strategy within which the MATE programme has evolved
  • Co-ordinating and advising on our CPD and related support for members and the wider sector, including Annual Schools , in line with the IHBC’s evolving corporate plans and charitable aims.

This is a unique opportunity for a person – or persons – in tune with the IHBC’s ethos, ambitions and aspirations, to lead on the IHBC’s evolving support for membership accreditation, career advancement and continuing professional development for members, volunteers, non-members and across sector partners.

Role overview
The Institute of Historic Building Conservation (IHBC) is a limited company and a registered charity that serves as the UK’s professional body for built and historic environment conservation specialists.  Full details of our operations, the services and benefits we offer, and our structures, are posted on our website.

The role of the post-holder(s) may be delivered flexibly, most likely as part time, job-share or as a contractual arrangement, depending on the strengths, needs and circumstances of the successful applicant(s).

The role requires post-holder(s) to operate across all our UK-based Branches, volunteers and, where appropriate, partner networks.

Any post-holder will be a confident speaker with excellent communication skills, as well as a modern ‘networker’, promoting the IHBC to a range of audiences, initially mainly through the Membership Application Training Event (MATE) sessions and related promotional activities, including social media.  Typically MATE sessions are held within IHBC Branches, private companies, national charities and agencies etc., and other groups considering applying for IHBC membership or CPD support.

This role demands flexible but regular distance working, and so would suit highly organised and self-motivated individuals able to operate remotely whilst liaising closely with the wider IHBC team of staff, trustees and officers, themselves based across the UK.

You will be line managed by the IHBC Director, though you will work closely with all the Institute’s staff and elected officers.

Regular travel across the UK will be required.

The role is funded wholly by the IHBC, mainly member subscriptions and events income.

Outline details on the Post(s), subject to final negotiations:

  • Term: 3-year appointment initially with a presumption to extend.
  • Probation: 6 months from start.
  • Salary/fee: Up to £27,500 per annum for a Full Time appointment (or pro rata, dependant on proposals).
  • Pension: Arrangements, subject to role, to be confirmed following the probationary period.

Employment standards & needs
The IHBC is an equal opportunity employer.  Extensive travel will be required and candidates should be personally and physically able to travel extensively, including to remote sites (though generally to their own timetabling), and be prepared to stay away from home/office environments for short but planned periods.

Special notes:

  • Candidates should note that the role requires a flexible approach to the travel that will be required at particular times, even at irregular hours (including occasionally on weekends) and to less accessible parts of the UK, including staying overnight. You should be able and prepared to attend meetings outside of the standard working day, including in evenings and over weekends.
  • The IHBC is a professional body but it is also a small charity that relies on a substantial body of voluntary support. Staff are expected to recognise this distinctive character of the IHBC in their personal work patterns and approaches to their roles.

Work base
Home or agreed own office-based location, with potentially substantial work-related travel.

Expectations for performance:

  1. Plan, co-ordinate, manage and deliver Membership Application Training Event (MATE) sessions, typically held within Branches and with private companies and with other groups representing those interested in IHBC Membership and CPD support.
  2. Advance the IHBC’s evolving TeamStarter support programme for skills and career development, initially with consolidation of the MATE programme.
  3. Engage with and offer energetic support for linked IHBC activities including:
    • Internal IHBC Branch and related volunteer and national activities, including Annual Schools and across the full suite of the IHBC’s CPD support and promotional activities, g. the IHBC’s ToolBoxSelfStarter, and linked resources
    • Committee meetings (including taking minutes)
    • Agreed activities with partner bodies and similar.
  1. Raise cross-sector (including heritage, environmental, construction and development) awareness of IHBC events and activities:
    • Availing of IHBC technical support, to plan, build and refine social, digital and practice networks that can help optimise value, benefits and outcomes from the role (e.g. via Social Media, data analysis, surveys and NewsBlogs)
  1. Encourage, in line with the IHBC’s criteria and standards and under our guidance and as appropriate:
    • New members to join IHBC
    • Existing members to develop skills
    • Non-members to be aware of our members’ educational activities, support, potential and opportunities.

Additional expectations, subject to negotiation and personal strengths and capacity:

  • Supporting partner/promotional events
  • Supporting partner/promotion initiatives (g. articles etc.)
  • Monitoring of initiatives and linked data-gathering.

Your personal specifications:

  • A genuine and personal enthusiasm for built and historic environment conservation
  • A pro-active networker and traveller who enjoys joining in all aspects of event development, management and, especially, delivery of training and support, and who must be prepared to stay away overnight
  • Dynamic, independent and innovative, in particular in your forward planning and use of time and resources
  • Independent and self-motivated while keeping all apprised of your progress and initiatives
  • Enthusiastic learner and educator, willing and able to develop skills, enhance knowledge and guide experience
  • Personable with sense of humour
  • Effective communicator of both concepts and practices
  • Hard working and adaptable by nature
  • Comfortable with both new and old technologies in conservation and communication

Qualities you will need to demonstrate (essential)

  • Appreciative of conservation practice and values
  • Understanding of and a willingness to learn more about conservation-related practice, standards and careers (ideally as a Full Member of the IHBC)
  • Energetic, self-motivated and capable of operating independently and with limited supervision
  • Able to deliver and demonstrate effective outcomes, and analyse accordingly
  • Enthusiastic about both traditional and innovative practices in conservation volunteering, education and capacity building
  • Experience of volunteering, volunteer support or processes, in any context
  • Capacity to work and network closely and collaboratively with volunteers and others
  • Strong communication skills (including digital) combined with sympathetic inter-personal skills
  • Ability to develop and maintain excellent and effective relationships
  • Understanding of the fundamentals of events management

Qualities that will help in the post (recommended)

  • The IHBC has access to substantial technical IT skills and resources, so this role does not demand these skills. However a basic level of proficiency in MS Office Suite is expected, and the aptitude for potential further engagement with various other pieces of software e.g. Mailchimp, SurveyMonkey
  • Awareness & understanding of social and digital media
  • Driving licence

Please email attaching your application letter before the closing date, accompanied by a detailed CV or equivalent, stating why you think you should be appointed in the role of IHBC’s PD Officer.

Please include in your letter a statement on how you might propose, prefer, or be prepared to carry out the role described – or specific elements of it – and whether as a full-time staff member of the IHBC, part-time, in a job-share, or in any other preferred capacity, including a shared consultancy role.

If you have any queries about the position please contact Sean O’Reilly, IHBC director, by email only, at

Closing Date: Monday 8 July 2019

Interview & assessment
Interviews will be held in the week of 15 July, and online interview options also may be available subject to circumstances.  Interviews will take the form of a 30 minute ‘question and answer’ session, opening with about 5 minutes of ‘role-play’ OR a presentation as preferred, as per below:

Option 1: Role-play
A five-minute monologue of ‘role-play’ on how you might help out as CPD Officer in an imaginary local volunteer group of conservation volunteers who are organising an event.

Option 2: Presentation
A five-minute presentation on what you think you can offer the IHBC in that role, over a 1 and 5 year programme. A Powerpoint presentation facility will be available for physical interviews, with other options available on request. 

These above details constitute the formal information relevant to any interviews and appointments.

For more details on the IHBC see

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