Body: Acas
Appointing Department: Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Sectors: Business, Finance & Skills, Regulation
Location: London
Skills required: Business / Commercial, Change Management, Legal / Judicial, Regulation, Transformation
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: Remuneration will be calculated pro-rata with a full-time equivalent salary between £120,000 and £130,000.
Time Requirements: 2/3 days a week

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications


  • Panel Sift

    W/C 16/09/2019

  • Final Interview Date

    W/C 14/10/2019

  • Announcement



Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

The Chair of the Acas Council leads the Acas Council to develop Acas strategy and voice. Working closely with the Chief Executive the Chair ensures that the Council and executive operate effectively and with propriety. The Chair needs to be an effective advocate and ambassador for Acas; and will need to ensure that the Council works effectively in holding the executive to account for delivery against its strategic and business plans and for the efficient discharge of its statutory functions.  

The Chair of the Acas Council is responsible for:  

  • Leading the Council in setting the strategic direction for the organisation and supporting the Chief Executive to deliver Acas’ strategic and business plans and effectively discharge its statutory responsibilities, taking account of Government’s wider strategic priorities; 
  • Leading the Council in addressing key employment relations issues and promoting good practice in Britain’s workplaces; 
  • Providing visible and strong leadership and developing a positive culture for the Council and organisation as a whole; 
  • Representing Acas in discussions with Ministers and forging strong relations with Whitehall, Parliament; social partners that include the business community, unions and wider stakeholders; 
  • Ensuring that the Council operates effectively, efficiently and with due propriety; 
  • Supporting the Chief Executive to promote the efficient and effective use of staff and other resources in the context of financial constraints, and drive change, performance and improvement; and 
  • Raising the external profile of Acas (including Acas’ profile in the media). 

Person Specification

The Chair of the Acas Council is an important appointment, requiring a high calibre individual with the skills and experience to provide strong leadership to the Council. The successful applicant will also support the Chief Executive’s leadership of the organisation. The new Chair of Acas will quickly need to get to grips with the policy and political environment in which Acas operates and be able to: 

  • Articulate a clear vision of how Acas can support a fair, efficient and competitive labour market in Great Britain (GB) and work collaboratively with BEIS to maximise Acas’ impact and contribution to driving economic growth, while maintaining Acas independence as set out in the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992; 
  • Effectively chair the Acas Council and work with the Chief Executive and Council members to set the strategic direction for Acas, ensuring that Acas is able to deliver high quality services for a diverse range of customers including meeting the needs of small and micro-employersthe wider business community and  employees,  across a range of diverse communities; 
  • Ensure that Acas is in a position to identify and take advantage of new opportunities while properly and efficiently continuing to discharge its statutory duties; and 
  • Develop Acas’ key relationships with the social partners, Government, sector bodies and other major stakeholders and contribute to policy development.

Essential Skills

The Acas Chair should bring strong employment relations experience from either a private or public sector background, and be able to demonstrate the following skills and experience: 

  • Ability to develop a strong and credible relationship with Ministers and senior officials; 
  • A record of high achievement in the candidate’s field of experience; 
  • Relationship skills, communication abilityand have the authority to inspire confidence and credibility across Acas’ many and varied stakeholders; 
  • The ability to understand the impact of employment relations across employment sectors and its significance for growth and organisational success and champion employee engagement and good employment relations; 
  • Sound judgement to be able to maintain Acas’ statutory independence and impartiality while maintaining the confidence of Ministers and maximising the organisation’s impact on driving GB growth and productivity; 
  • The ability to lead and develop the Council with a diverse membership that represents often competing priorities; 
  • A commitment to providing a highquality service to stakeholders, delivering value for money for the taxpayer 
  • Ability to contribute to resolving the most intractable employment disputes; 
  • The ability to understand and interpret financial information and to provide effective challenge to the Chief Executive who is personally accountable to Parliament for the regularity and propriety of Acas’ spend and business activities; and  
  • Provide a commitment to the Nolan principles of public service (Selflessness, Integrity, Objectivity, Accountability, Openness, Honesty and Leadership); and the principles of diversity and equal opportunities.

Desirable criteria 

The Acas Chair would also be able to offer some of the following: 

  • Sound judgement – An ability to influence with confidence in controversial or difficult situations in order to reach desired outcomes, whilst maintaining the confidence of stakeholders; 
  • Strong personal commitment to best practice in good governance and securing value for money 
  • Proven track record of  leadership at senior level securing strategic change; and;
  • The ability to maintain independence and impartiality of thought and judgement in situations where strongly opposing views may be held by others. 

Additional Information

BEIS is committed to providing equal opportunities for all, irrespective of race, age, disability, gender, marital status, religion, sexual orientation, transgender and working patterns and to the principle of public appointments on merit with independent assessments, openness and transparency of process.

BEIS offers professional training courses on public sector finance and governance for those new to the public sector.

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