Our client is looking for an experienced Housing Options officer to work on a 37 hour per week contract role to start to start on the 27-11-17 until the 23-02-18 with a likely extension
Hours:9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday to Friday.
YOU MUST HOLD A CURRENT STANDARD CRB/DBS CHECK WHICH IS LESS THAN 12 MONTHS OLD
To provide a high-quality homeless prevention, advice and assistance service to households who are homeless or threatened with homelessness.
To provide an initial assessment service to homeless applicants.
- Main duties and responsibilities
- Applications: On rota or as directed be a Duty Officer to provide a public reception service, interview clients. Deal with telephone enquiries including telephone duty.
- Customer Care: Provide an excellent customer care service to all applicants whether in person, by phone or any other method of communications.
- Prevention of Homelessness: Respond effectively to threatened homelessness through the use of mediation, conciliation, advice or advocacy on legal rights or by seeking to secure access to alternative accommodation or identification of other solutions.
- Liaise proactively with Private and Social Landlords, Empty Homes Service and other sources to match customers to available housing opportunities. To provide clients with alternative options such as low cost home ownership.
- Refer customers to the Homelessness Assessment Officer where homelessness cannot be prevented and the household wishes to pursue an application under Part VII, Homelessness Act 1996 (as amended).
- Advice & Assistance: Provide a comprehensive, person-centred advice & assistance service to all applicants.
- Home visits: Visit clients at home as part of carrying out enquiries, preventing homelessness or other issues such as verification of fraud and/or outreach.
- Casework: Be responsible for own caseload of homeless prevention cases, providing a casework service to private tenants, owner occupiers and other tenures. Advising and advocating on legal rights, housing and welfare benefits and other related legislation with the aim of preventing or deferring homelessness and promoting alternative options to social housing.
- Enquiries and Part VII casework: Interview and carry out initial enquiries into homeless applications to establish what duties the Client may have under Part VII Housing Act 1996 and other legislation. Ensure cases are referred promptly and with appropriate information and documentation.
- Ensure that all applicants are fully aware of the local housing supply and conditions, the full range of housing options open to them and that they are kept informed of progress in their case. Meet all statutory, corporate and local deadlines and targets.
- Referrals: Proactively identify support needs and refer applicants to support services such as floating support, specialist agencies (e.g.: mental health, substance abuse etc). Refer clients for advice on multiple debt problems.
- Record keeping: Keep a full and accurate record of customer contacts and casework and ensure that all manual or IT records are kept for statistical, monitoring and reporting purposes.
- Social Services: Liaise with Social Services where necessary to ensure appropriate services are provided, particularly where The Client does not have a duty to provide accommodation.
- Administration: Carry out own administration function and provide all information and data as requested by Team Leaders or Service Lead. Deal with correspondence within set deadlines, including where requested drafting replies to Members, maintaining records and producing reports as necessary.
- Training: Undertake training as required, e.g. on new legislation or new technology. Keep abreast of all relevant legislation, processes and procedures by reading new case law, Council and government briefings. Participate in Personal Development Plan and appraisal meetings, and team meetings as requested.
- New employees: Assist with the induction of new workers by shadowing, buddying and other procedures.
- Project work: Undertake ongoing project work as directed, relating to the prevention of homelessness and the housing options available to those in housing need.
- Other Duties: Commensurate with the post, including administrative or clerical duties.
- Partnership working: Actively engage in multi agency meetings to represent the Client and ensure all options for the client are explored.
- A suitable qualification equivalent to the Chartered Institute of Housing level III.
A good standard of education, including a demonstrably good level of numeracy and literacy.
- Experience of prioritising competing demands in a pressurised environment, recognising service priorities, and managing a caseload within statutory deadlines.
- Experience of managing own caseload.
Experience of achieving performance targets and departmental objectives
- Knowledge of local and rural housing problems.
- Knowledge of excellent customer care.
- Knowledge of social exclusion issues.
- Knowledge of social welfare services.
- Awareness and adherence to Health & Safety requirements.
An understanding and commitment to equality and diversity and how it relates to housing.