Student Loans Company, Non-Executive Director

Body: Student Loans Company
Appointing Department: Department for Education
Sectors: Business, Finance & Skills, Education, Regulation, Science & Technology, Transport
Location: National
Skills required: Business / Commercial, Change Management, IT / Digital, Major Projects, Regulation, Transformation
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: £12,000 per annum, rising to a maximum of £17,000 depending on participation in board sub-committees or other additional duties as agreed with SLC Chair. There is an expectation that all Board members will join one or more sub-committees.
Time Requirements: Approximately 2 days per month which includes Board and Committee commitments. The board meets formally 8 times a year but may also convene outside the scheduled cycle of meetings. Meetings will be held virtually and in person in keeping with SLC’s approach to blended working. In person meetings will be held in Glasgow, Darlington and Llandudno. Non-executive directors will be expected to travel to these locations as necessary.

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    19/04/2022 at 10:00

  • Panel Sift

    10th May 2022

  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement


The closing date for applications has been extended to 19th April 2022, at 10.00a (24.06.22) Due to unexpected circumstances interviews will not take place on 5th July as originally published. We will update the timeline as soon as alternative dates are secured. 30/06/22 New interview date of 12 July confirmed. Update 18.11.22 Deliberations regarding this appointment are ongoing.


Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description


SLC is a UK public sector organisation established to provide student funding (in the form of loans and grants) to over two million new and returning students and learners annually, in colleges and universities across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. We are a non-profit making limited company which is Government-owned. In total, we have 8.5 million customers and manage a nationally significant loan book worth £177.9bn (as at 31 March 2021).

The scale of SLC is akin to that of a mid-tier UK financial services institution. It is incorporated as a company limited by shares under the Companies Act and is wholly in public ownership – with the UK Government being the majority shareholder and the remaining shares held by the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The SLC provides different functions for each of the devolved administrations.

As a non-executive director, you will play an active role on the board of the SLC, supporting the SLC Executive Team and SLC Chair to deliver the company’s portfolio of priorities, overcome challenges and exploit opportunities, including the continued delivery of SLC’s transformation programme.


In 2020 SLC commenced a major transformation programme (Evolve) that is part of the Government Major Projects Portfolio (GMPP). The Evolve programme is radically updating SLC’s technology and working practices – allowing it to better engage with a modern, digitally fluent user base and provide a consistently higher standard of customer service and experience. It will also stabilise SLC’s existing technology base and IT infrastructure, improve data and reform its people structures. As SLC’s key programme, Evolve will need guidance and oversight, as well as support from the board to ensure it achieves the necessary outcomes.

Supporting the executive team to modernise SLC over the next few years will be a key responsibility, a significant element of the role will be to work with the board to ensure that the resources and skills available to the Company are commensurate with and focussed on its delivery obligations.

Role of an SLC Non-Executive Director

Candidates will support the Chair and CEO by bringing their unique skills and experience to the board, in ensuring effective oversight and assurance of the operations of the SLC, as well as steering the organisation through the development and delivery of any organisational change. Specific responsibilities will include:

  • constructively challenging and contributing to the development of strategy and business planning, including the setting and development of key objectives and targets.
  • scrutinising the performance of the organisation in meeting agreed goals and objectives, overseeing performance against customer service standards, reviewing regular financial information concerning the management of SLC, and ensuring that effective arrangements are in place within SLC to ensure compliance with statutory or administrative requirements on the use of public funds.
  • ensuring that effective arrangements are in place within SLC to provide assurance on risk management, governance, and internal control.
  • taking forward the strategic aims and objectives of SLC and ensuring these are consistent with its overall strategic direction and within the policy and resources framework determined by the Secretary of State; and
  • ensuring that SLC’s responsibilities towards its employees, such as pay, pension and development of staff, are satisfactorily discharged.


Person Specification

We are looking for applicants with experience of leading large, complex organisations to achieve success and the ability to operate and influence at Board level. The successful candidate will need to evidence significant experience for each of the essential areas listed below. Please note if applicant numbers are excessive a preliminary sift will be undertaken using only the first essential criteria.


  • the ability to think strategically, and effectively shape organisational strategy and transformation
  • delivering major technology dependent transformational and operational change in an organisation of scale
  • experience of multi-vendor technology delivery in a large-scale financial transaction processing environment
  • experience of undertaking legacy IT transformations within a complex organisation
  • possess excellent communication skills, including the ability to engage and influence senior stakeholders.

Additionally, at interview candidates may also be assessed on the following desirable criteria:


  • experience of enterprise scale software delivery lifecycle within transformation and BAU states, including an understanding of Agile delivery techniques
  • experience of retail financial or other customer services in the private sector and/or experience of large-scale customer services in the public sector
  • experience of working with or in UK Government/Devolved Governments and the demands of public accountability
  • experience of working across Governments and devolution awareness
  • experience of working in an advisory capacity in IT – in industry, client service delivery or consulting.
  • experience of Government Digital Service (GDS) / Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) or equivalent standards and services.


Click on the link to watch a short message from Peter Lauener the chair of the SLC.


Additional Information

The Department is focused on equality of opportunity and is committed to ensuring that public appointments better represent the views of the communities which they serve. We particularly encourage applicants from underrepresented groups, those based outside London and the South-East and applicants who have achieved success through non-traditional educational routes.

We ask that all applicants complete an anonymised diversity monitoring form used for data gathering information in order to ensure departments are recruiting from the widest possible pool.


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